Sunday 1 April 2012

From Top to Skirt...

A woman's close fitting top is very easy to refashion into a skirt for a little girl. If the top is big enough to fit over the hips of an adult, you know it will be large enough to be a pull up skirt (with no zip or buttons), for a girl. Here's the top I began with. The fabric is stretch and the buttons are purely decorative.

You will need to take two measurements (of the person who will be wearing the new skirt), before you begin.
  • waist
  • waist to calf (or desired length of the skirt)

    Casing for the elastic:
    This top had an obvious panel which would be perfect for the elastic casing for the waist. If your top doesn't have a panel, choose the narrowest part of the top to become the new waist. Allow about 1.25 to 1.5 inches for the casing and cut what will be the top of the skirt. You will need your casing to be wide enough to easily feed the elastic through.
    • Turn 1/4" and stitch
    • Turn again, about 1/4" to 1/2" larger than the elastic you will use. I used 3/4" elastic, so my casing is 1", or you could go to 1.25". You could also use 1" elastic and your casing would need to be about 1.25" to 1.5" (1 and 1/4" to 1 and 1/2").
    • Baste (hand sew) to hold in place.
    Why haven't I been specific with the casing widths? If you are new to sewing, you may like to choose the larger of the two figures. This will make it easier to feed the elastic through the casing. If the casing is a little wide it won't matter, but if it is too narrow, you won't be able to feed the elastic through. If you choose the narrower figure, you will need to be very accurate with your measuring and your sewing.
    • Stitch around the top of the skirt as close as you can to the edge.
    • Stitch as close as you can to the hem of the casing, leaving a 2" opening to feed the elastic into.

    Inserting the elastic:
    For a young girl, I cut the elastic about 1 and 1/2" to 2" shorter than the waist measurement.
    • Attach a safety pin to the end of the elastic.
    • Feed the elastic into the casing through the opening, making sure you leave the end sticking out of the opening.
    • Remove the safety pin and stitch the elastic ends together.
    • Push the ends back into the casing.
    • Spread out the elastic so it is even all the way around.
    • Sew through the casing and elastic at the side seams. This will prevent the elastic from twisting in the casing.

    Determining the length:
    • Decide how wide the finished contrast band will be.
    • Cut the skirt to the desired length.
    • Contrast band + skirt = length from waist to calf
    • Cut extra for seam allowances.
    Contrast band:
    Width = twice the width of the skirt, plus seam allowances
    Length = twice the finished length of the band, plus seam allowances
    • Sew the short ends of the contrast band to form a circle
    • Fold in half lengthwise, wrong sides together.
    • Place raw edges of band with bottom of skirt.
    • Sew seam.
    • Neaten seams.
    • Press seam towards the contrast band.

    Topstitching the contrast band:
    I press the seam towards the contrast band because it is woven fabric and therefore will not stretch when you topstitch.
    • Topstitch about 1/8" from the edge.

    Fabric Bow:
    • Cut a stip of the contrasting fabric about 20" x 3".
    • Fold in the ends and press.
    • Fold in half lengthwise and press
    • Open, fold each side to the middle and press.
    • Fold in half and press.
    • Stitch close to both edges.
    • Fold your bow and attach to the skirt. I hand stitched to the skirt.

    • Make a bow the same as the one on the skirt. 
    • Cut a piece of stretch fabric for the band. I used an off cut from the bottom of the top.
    • Sew the ends together and attach the bow.

    A woman's top turned into a cute, little skirt and a headband.

    ... Pam

    Have you seen our ongoing  Skirts for Girls Link Party?


    1. Very clever! And the skirt is very cute too - does your daughter like it?

    2. This is so lovely - and such a good idea. My girls aren't little enough to try this any more, more's the pity! Lovely way of recycling though (which, as you know, I am quite keen on!)

    3. Another beautiful upcycle Pam. I love that you don't even need to sew a button or a buttonhole. They are all done for you :)

    4. Very cute! Love that polka dot fabric!

    5. Great recycle Pam as always! Pity I only have boys in the family.

    6. Oh, I love how you added the polka dots! So cute!

    7. Just so very Cute! Thanks for visiting and your nice comments!

    8. What a gorgeous little skirt - great upcycle and another wonderful tutorial Pam!

      Thanks for linking to a Round Tuit!
      Hope you have a fabulous week!
      Jill @ Creating my way to Success

    9. That is such a cute skirt and I love the polka dot fabric! I might have to try making a skirt like this for my little sister.

    10. Really cute skirt! I love repurposing clothes.

    11. Super cute! Love the polka dots! Great job! :)

    12. So cute! I love the button front and the polka dots are so fun! Polka dots are my favorite.:)

    13. What a great transformation! The polka dots fabric makes it so cute!

    14. Wow, this is incredible!! I love this refashion. I'm always amazed at what you come up with! Thanks for sharing at oopsey daisy!

    15. So cute! I don't think that would work for me-my daughter and I are starting to share clothes:)

    16. Perfect tutorial and the result is truly gorgeous!

    17. What a great idea, how cute! Thanks for sharing!

    18. It is adorable! Great job! Stopping by from tater tots. Come say hi sometime.

    19. Your cleverness at fefashions amazes me Pam!

    20. So cute and very cleaver! Thanks for linking up to the Creative Genius Link Party at the Creative Paige!

    21. great upcycle! I've used women's skirts as dresses for costumes, but this is of course much more finished than my version! thanks so much for the inspiration and for sharing on Craft Schooling Sunday!

    22. I often use women's ex-large garments to refashion into dresses or skirts for my 6 yr olds. I don't know what I'm going to do when my girls get too big, lol.

      1. By the time they're too big, they'll probably have ideas of their own... LOL!!!

    23. Oh my goodness, you do some cute refashions! Following your blog :)

    24. you do some really good tuts, great photos, clear concise instructions. I've pinned 3 or 4 of them tonight. Well Done!


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