Maternity Skirt Tutorial
I never could find cute comfortable skirts to wear when I was pregnant, at least not that I could afford. So I decided to make my own and sell some on Etsy for other mommy’s wanting to be stylish and comfy while pregnant. For those mommy’s handy with a needle and thread, here is a mini-tutorial for you to make your own.
1. First you need to start with a pattern or make your own. Look for a simple a-line skirt. A great book is “Sew What: Skirts”. This will tell you everything you need to draft your own pattern. Since we’re making an elastic waist maternity skirt, it’s even easier. You basically need three measurements: your waist (where you want the skirt to ride), the widest part of your hips, and the length you want the skirt to be.
2. Your waist measurement will be your knit fabric and elastic measurement. Don’t add a seam allowance to it. You can also just take the knit fabric and wrap it around as tight as you’d like and use that as your measurement. Don’t forget to leave room for baby and add an inch for seam allowance. All seam allowances are ½”.
3. You will need:
a. 1 ½ – 2 yards cotton fabric (quilters cotton, lighter weight Home Dec, any woven that drapes well)
b. 1 ½ -2 yards cotton muslin for lining
c. ½ yard cotton/lycra knit fabric
d. About a yard of 3” elastic
4. If you have a pattern: There should be two pattern pieces (if there’s more, you’re on your ownJ). Take one of them, it doesn’t matter which. You will be cutting several inches off of the top of the pattern. Mark the part of the pattern that is equal to your widest hip measurement plus at least 1 1/2 inches. You need the extra room for ease and seam allowance. I’m really not a pattern drafting master, so if can consult a book, so much the better. Cut ½ inch above that line. Do the same with your other pattern piece.
5. If you are drafting your own: I would really recommend getting the Sew What: Skirts book. It goes into more detail than I can right now. Basically, you want to make sure that the narrowest part of the woven material will be able to comfortable fit over your hips. The knit will stretch to accommodate your growing belly. The woven…not so much. J
6. After you’ve prewashed and ironed your fabric, cut one back panel and one front panel from your outer fabric and your cotton muslin lining. I usually cut it so that the front gently curves to be longer in the center front than the back. That way, when your belly grows and pulls the front of your skirt up, it won’t end up a lot shorter in front. I’d guess it ends up about an inch longer.
7. Cut a rectangle of knit fabric 7” by the length of your waist. If it stretches one direction more than the other, make sure you cut it with the stretchiest way going lengthwise, so it can stretch around your waist. Cut a piece of elastic equal to your waist measurement.
8. Sew elastic into circle, securing it by sewing several times. Sew the loose edge down too, so it doesn’t rub.
9. Sew the right sides of the short ends of the knit fabric together. You’ll have a circle.
10. Take the knit circle, wrong sides together. Wrap it around the elastic, so that the elastic is inside and the right sides of the knit are facing out. Sew the two edges of the knit together, trying to avoid catching the elastic in the seam. Use a zigzag stitch or whatever stretch stitch you like to use.
11. Sew the side seams of the front and back skirt pieces together, right sides together. Repeat with the lining fabric.
12. Press all seam allowances.
13. Take the outer skirt and mark the middle and back. I use pins. Then mark halfway in between these measurements. The sides are already marked for you, by the side seams. Do the same with the lining and also the waistband.
14. Take the outer skirt, right side out. Take the waistband and place it upside down around the top of the outer skirt. Line up the back seam with the middle back of the skirt. You should have the top edge of the skirt and the unfinished edge of the waistband lined up. Match up the sides, front and all the in-between markings you made. Pin in place. The waistband is smaller around than the skirt, so don’t be surprised bu that.
15. Take the lining, wrong side out. Match up the markings on the lining with the skirt and waistband.
16. Sew all four layers together, using a zigzag. Gently stretch the waistband to fit the skirt as you sew.
17. Make sure the hem is hanging straight and is the length you want. If you made the front longer than the back, keep this in mind when hemming. That way, you won’t be looking at it and wondering what happened!
18. Press the bottom hem ¼”. Press again ½”. Double check to make sure it looks good and is the length you want. Sew just next to the edge of the part you pressed. I use an edge-foot to get a nice straight line. You could also do a blind-hem, if that’s what you prefer. Repeat with the lining.
19. Iron and admire your handiwork. You now have a lovely skirt that will hopefully get you through many months of pregnancy. Please let me know if there is anything I can do to improve this tutorial.