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Sunday, July 22, 2012

High-Low Skirt Tutorial // DIY

I'm heading into my final week of work. How this summer has flown by! The good news is that I get to see my family in less than a week and I am so excited. I haven't seen my parents in a month and I haven't seen my brother in three months. This long distance thing is tough!

I have gotten a lot of crafting done this summer, which is nice. I'm trying to line up a lot of blog posts for the coming school year since it is difficult to sew or do any crafty things in a tiny dorm room. I am considering bringing my sewing machine to school this year, though. Maybe I'll have some room to store it under my bed...

Ready for this week's tutorial?

I gotta admit it, high-low skirts have come into fashion. 

I'm not exactly sure how, and at first I was hesitant, but now all I want to do is make high-low skirts. I absolutely hate high-low dresses (I lovingly refer to them as mullet dresses), but for some reason I love high-low skirts. Call me crazy.

My mom got this beautiful patterned sheer fabric at a yard sale for cheap cheap cheap (thanks, mom!) and as soon as I saw it, I knew it would make the perfect flowy high-low skirt.

I've seen tutorials that show you how to make a high-low skirt from an already even-hemmed skirt (I'm thinking of making one of those sometime in the future so stay tuned), but with this particular fabric, I had to be aware of the bottom of the fabric since it was bordered. 

Want to learn how I did it? Read on!

Here's what you'll need:
-fabric of your choice
-white cotton fabric for the lining
-thick elastic for the waistband
-sewing machine, pins, etc.

Here's what you do:

1. Lay out the fabric on the floor so that it is higher in the front and lower in the back. Because this fabric had a bordered bottom, I couldn't just hem it high-low, I had to do this instead. Remember to bunch the fabric if you want it to be bunched when you sew the skirt.

2. Once the fabric is laid out the way you want, cut straight across the top at the length that will make the skirt hit you at the length you want (a). Put pins at the each fourth of the skirt so you can keep the front and back aligned properly when sewing (b). Then, using a French seam (tutorial for how to do that here) sew up the edge (c).






3. Measure your waist and cut a piece of elastic to fit. Sew the elastic so that it makes a circle waistband. Mark the elastic in fourths. To do this, I folded in half then folded in half again.

4. Now time for the lining. If your fabric is thicker, you may not need this. For my lining, I used plain white cotton fabric. I didn't measure too much, I just made it a decent amount larger than my waist and hips because I gathered this fabric as well. Sew up the seams and press them open.

Like my ring? I made it! The tutorial is coming soon!

5. Once you have the lining sewed (basically it's a large tube of white fabric), mark the fourths. Pin the fourth marks to the fourth marks on the elastic. Sew around the top, stretching the elastic as you go so that it gathers the lining fabric. This is one of my favorite (and one of the easiest!) techniques for gathering fabric with elastic.

6. Using the pin markings you've put at the fourth points in the fabric for the outside of the skirt, align with the fourth marks on the elastic waistband and pin in place. Pin at the eighth points and more if necessary. For mine, I had so much fabric that I had to gather it and pin a lot, but if you don't have it very gathered, you can just stretch the elastic while sewing (same as with the lining above), creating a gathered look just the same. 

Normally, the right side of the lining faces the inside of the skirt, but for this particular project since my fabric was so sheer, I put the right side of the lining facing out so that if you saw through, you would see nice clean edges.

Sew all around the top edge. I sewed two rounds about an inch apart (the same as with the lining, which you can see more clearly in the picture above). Once done, I sewed a little piece of ribbon on the inside of the waistband at the back of the skirt so I could easily tell where the back center was (pardon the frayed edges).

7. Final step! Hem the inside lining. To do this, try on the skirt and mark where the hem should be with tailors chalk, then iron up the edge twice and sew.

I didn't hem the bottom edge of the sheer patterned fabric because it was the selvage edge (but you can't tell because it just looks finished) and it won't fray.

And you're done!

As always, let me know if this inspired you! See my Contact page for more information.

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"When I am afraid, I will put my trust in You. In God, whose word I praise, In God I have put my trust; I shall not be afraid. What can mere man do to me?
-Psalm 56:3-4

In light of the recent theater shooting, I strongly encourage you to read this great blog post from a woman who was in the theater that night.
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  1. Make for me! Pretty please! Or help me make for me, whatever floats your boat. I'll cover material cost 'n whatnot :-)

  2. cute outfit! i wish i could sew or know how to sew!

  3. I'm going to give this a try ASAP! Thanks for sharing...super cute. :)

  4. I'm not a big fan of the high-low style going on but that skirt is so cute! I love the pattern and just how it flows perfectly!


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