pretty simple skirt pattern

pretty simple skirt pattern
The Pretty Simple Skirt Pattern is perfect for a beginner sewer. The skirt is made
from two rectangles of fabric, sewn together and gathered by an elastic waist.
It provides step-by-step instructions and defines basic sewing terms. This quick
sewing project that can be accomplished in less than one hour.
• Read the entire pattern; then start sewing.
• Follow each task, one at a time.
• Work slowly and correctly.
Skills Set Needed:
• Thread a sewing machine.
• Machine sew a straight stitch.
Terms and Techniques
explained in this pattern
• Casing
• Cotton
• Grainline
• Hem
• Seam Allowance
• Seam Finishes
• Selvage
• Topstitch
gathering materials
• 1 Yard Cotton Fabric
• 1 Package of ¾" Elastic
• All-Purpose, 100%
Polyester Thread to Match
• Scissors
• Straight Pins
• 1 Large Safety Pin
• Tape Measure
• Seam Gauge
• Standard 9/10 Sewing
• Iron
Cotton Fabric—one
of the largest
categories of
fabric—is a fine,
plain weave fabric
made from the seedpod fibers of the
cotton plant.
Cotton fibers are woven
on a large loom and can
be blended with other
fibers such as the manmade fiber polyester.
Cotton fabric can be
woven lightweight such
as the thinnest batiste
or heavyweight such as
How to Shop:
For the skirt fabric, look
for apparel cotton or
quilting cotton. What’s
the difference?— the
polyester blend. The
higher the percentage
of polyester, the less you
need to iron. Quilting
cotton is usually 100%
cotton while apparel
cotton is often - but
not always - blended
with polyester. Read the
labels on the ends of the
Right Side (RS)
Fabric Panel
Wrong Side (WS)
• fabric Finished Edges:
• fabric Raw Edges:
preparing the fabric
Wash and iron fabric.
Working with
Cotton Fabrics: Light-
to-medium weight
cottons are very
easy to sew with, but
always wash and iron
cotton fabric before
sewing because it
tends to shrink
about 10%.
Grain Alignment
straighten the fabric ends to check for
grain alignment. Instead of using scissors and a ruler
to create a straight end, try ripping the fabric. Lightto-medium weight cotton fabrics rip easily and in a
straight line.
the direction that
the woven threads
run. The grainline
can make or break
the way an outfit
lays or drapes. The
lengthwise grain
usually runs vertically,
from shoulder to the
hem. The crosswise
grain usually runs
horizontally and has
more give. Always
check the grain
alignment because
the fabric may
have been pulled
off-grain during
Selvage: During the
weaving process, a
firmly woven strip
called the selvage is
formed along each
lengthwise edge of
the finished fabric.
With your scissors, snip one selvage; grasp the
fabric firmly; and rip to the opposite selvage.
Measure length
from waist to
about the knee.
Simple Skirt Formula
Desired Length +2.5"
Natural Waist + 1"
Desired Length +2.5"
Natural Waist + 1"
Natural Waist − 1"
½" Seam allowance
cutting the fabric
Cut the front and back of the skirt—using the measurement
formula from Step 3.
Tip: Instead of cutting the fabric, measure, snip and rip like
you did in Step 2.
finish the raw edges
Seam Finishes: A
seam finish is any
technique used to
make a seam edge
look neater/or keep
it from fraying. This
step can be done to
the raw edges of the
fabric either before
you sew the seam or
Zigzag technique:
Zigzag stitch on the
edge of the seam
allowance without
exceeding it and then
trim the excess fabric to
the edge of the seam
Finish the RAW EDGES with a zigzag stitch or
use a serger.
Serger Machine
As fabric is fed through
the serger, it sews and
cuts the fabric so that
the edges are inside the
sewing the sides
RS together, place the front and back pieces on
top of each other. Pin each side.
Pinning a Seam
Take the time to pin
a seam before you
sew. Pinning a seam
takes care of holding
the fabric together,
leaving you free
to concentrate on
controlling the
sewing machine.
Seam Allowance:
The area between
the fabric edge and
the stitching line on
two (or more) pieces
of material being
stitched together.
Sew each side with a ½ inch seam allowance,
carefully taking out each pin before you get to it.
Why press open the
Well-pressed seams
help a project
look polished and
professional when
finished. It helps
“set the stitches” or
loosen the fibers
around the stitches.
Press open the seams.
create the elastic
To create the casing for the elastic waistband,
measure on the WS one inch from the
top and mark with tailor’s chalk. Do this all
around the top of the skirt
Turn down the RS down one inch onto
the WS to meet the chalk mark and Press.
Casing: a fabric tunnel
which holds elastic or
sew the first row of topstitching as close to the
edge as possible.
Sew the second row one inch from the first. Stop
and backstitch approximately one inch before
your starting point. You will need this gap to insert
your elastic.
You are here.
Two rows of topstitching create the casing.
Topstitch: A stitch
sewn on the right
side of the garment
1/8-1/4” from the
finished edge. Using
a slightly longer
stitch can add a
look and emphasize
a seam.
Attach a safety pin to one end of
the elastic. Find the gap left in the
second row of topstitching.
To join the elastic ends, overlap
them one inch and pin. Make two
rows of zigzag stitches. Pull joined
ends inside casing.
With a straight pin, pin the other
end of the elastic to the skirt so it
will not be pulled out of the casing
as the pin is worked around the
waistline. thread the elastic
through with the safety pin. Take
care not to twist the elastic.
Sew up the opening in the second
row of topstitching.
sewing the hem
Hem: The edge of a
fabric that has been
sewn to prevent
There are many
techniques for
creating a hem.
Double-Turn Hem,
Finish the bottom of the skirt with a
double-turn hem. On the WS, measure
one inch from the bottom of the skirt and
mark with tailor’s chalk. Do this all the
way around the skirt.
as shown below, is
one of the simpliest
ways to finish an
edge. You can make
this hem as wide
or as narrow as you
WS of Fabric
RS of Fabric
Turn Up the RS one inch onto the WS to meet
the chalk mark and Press.
Turn Up the bottom of the skirt one
more inch, use the first fold as your
guide. Press.
Now the raw edges of the fabric are
enclosed in the hem.
Topstitch in place. Stitch as close
to the fold as possible.