Simple Skirt Rig

For those do-it-yourselfers...

Simple Skirt Rig

Postby Grok » Wed Oct 03, 2018 3:50 pm

I have been experimenting to devise a simple skirt that you can create with meager sewing skills and little money.

A beginner's project.
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Re: Simple Skirt Rig

Postby Grok » Wed Oct 03, 2018 4:43 pm

So what holds the skirt up? Providing means for that would seem to add complexity. I decided to off load the complexity onto suspenders (braces). The kind with clamps. The rig would hang from the shoulders-rather like a suspender skirt, which has built in straps.
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Re: Simple Skirt Rig

Postby crfriend » Wed Oct 03, 2018 5:46 pm

Tunnels for elastics are trivial to put into the upper boundary of a skirt. It's done by folding the top portion of the skirt over and stitching it down on what'll be the inside. Before the final length is done, thread an elastic that's been cut to the proper length through the tunnel and sew the ends together, then close off the tunnel.
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Re: Simple Skirt Rig

Postby Jim » Wed Oct 03, 2018 8:57 pm

crfriend wrote:Tunnels for elastics are trivial to put into the upper boundary of a skirt. It's done by folding the top portion of the skirt over and stitching it down on what'll be the inside. Before the final length is done, thread an elastic that's been cut to the proper length through the tunnel and sew the ends together, then close off the tunnel.

A drawstring also can go through such a tunnel. Boot laces make fine drawstrings.
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Choosing a Style

Postby Grok » Thu Oct 04, 2018 4:27 pm

The simplest option would be a sarong. I was thinking of the next step up, in effect. Hand sewn, with a minimum of sewing.

Early on I focused on circle skirts. A circle skirt is basically a disk of cloth, with a hole in the middle for your waist. There are DIY tutorials online. As fabric is sold in rectangular sections, you would essentially take a large-ish square of fabric and draw two circles on it, inner and outer. The inner, smaller circle would be for waist. You would cut the larger circle to get your disk of cloth, and cut the smaller circle out to accommodate your waist.

BTW, for a large, rectangular piece of cloth you can purchase used flat sheets at thrift stores. A flat sheet has a large, continuous surface area. Actually, I came across a web site which showed a woman making a skirt out of an old flat sheet.

Then I came across a DIY tutorial that included two different options: 1. Circle skirt. 2. Hankerchief skirt.

With a handkerchief skirt you can skip a step-drawing the larger circle. A hankerchief skirt is basically a square of cloth with a hole in the middle.
Last edited by Grok on Thu Oct 04, 2018 4:56 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Choosing a Style

Postby beachlion » Thu Oct 04, 2018 4:40 pm

Grok wrote:The simplest option would be a sarong. I was thinking of the next step up, in effect.

Early on I focused on circle skirts. A circle skirt is basically a disk of cloth, with a hole in the middle for your waist. There are DIY tutorials online. As fabric is sold in rectangular sections, you would essentially take a large-ish square of fabric and draw two circles on it, inner and outer. The inner, smaller circle would be for waist. You would cut the larger circle to get your disk of cloth, and cut the smaller circle out to accommodate your waist.

BTW, for a large, rectangular piece of cloth you can purchase used flat sheets at thrift stores. A flat sheet has a large, continuous surface area. Actually, I came across a web site which showed a woman making a skirt out of an old flat sheet.


If you can find the right size, you can use a round table cloth. Cut a hole in the middle and you are done. This idea I saw somewhere on the Internet.

The easiest are still the skirts with an elastic waist band. And for circle skirts you don't have to get the full circle. It eats too much fabric. Go for a cone like shape. Most of my A-line skirts are made in this shape. I make them with 4, 6 or 8 panels. The hardest part is getting a zipper in. The rest is plain sailing or sewing. I even made a long compass to draw the circle parts of the panels.
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Re: Hankerchief Skirt

Postby Grok » Thu Oct 04, 2018 4:50 pm

Before I go into details I will give a quick overview of what I have tried.

!. My first attempt was a handkerchief skirt made from a red flat sheet. When I stepped into it I noticed that it was too long-it was dragging on the floor.

2. Tried my second attempt yesterday, from a pale blue flat sheet. When I stepped into it I heard a tearing sound. From the waist, it was not quite wide enough. Also, the result was too short for my tastes.

BTW, as there aren't really any rules for MIS you can use bright colors.
Last edited by Grok on Fri Oct 05, 2018 3:34 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Choosing a Style

Postby Grok » Thu Oct 04, 2018 5:00 pm

beachlion wrote:If you can find the right size, you can use a round table cloth. Cut a hole in the middle and you are done. This idea I saw somewhere on the Internet.
I will keep that in mind.

I found several table cloth-to-skirt tutorials when I googled "DIY, skirt, table cloth".
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Re: Choosing a Style

Postby crfriend » Thu Oct 04, 2018 5:00 pm

beachlion wrote:If you can find the right size, you can use a round table cloth. Cut a hole in the middle and you are done. This idea I saw somewhere on the Internet.

I have a book that makes use of that tactic, and I have a pair of round tablecloths that I intend to turn into one skirt -- an ivory underlay and a white lace overlay. I just need to buy a sewing-machine first.

Gored skirts can be made so as to save on fabric wastage, but one needs to be careful if the fabric one is using has a nap to it. The 8-gore skirt is easiest to position a zipper into as it can either got directly astern or on one side; 6-gore skirts tend to favour side-placement, and 4-gore skirts (e.g. the Mouse Works type) are hardest unless one wants an offset zipper (ditto pockets).
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Re: Simple Skirt Rig

Postby Grok » Thu Oct 04, 2018 5:21 pm

For a beginner's project I planned on something that is hand sewn. If you try this and decide not to go with DIY projects, you won't have invested in a sewing machine. On the other hand, if you like the result, you might decide to upgrade your skills and buy a sewing machine.

Some members have more advanced skills, and have had interesting results.

I described a simple method for hand sewing in the robe thread. I believe that there are online tutorials for this as well.

BTW, I was thinking in terms of a skirt that would be loose enough, if your bladder was full, that you could simply lift up the skirt.
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Re: Simple Skirt Rig

Postby beachlion » Thu Oct 04, 2018 9:38 pm

I started to sew by hand but it took me too much of my time. And also patience is in short supply when you know a sewing machine will fly through it in no time. So I bought a sewing machine and it made all the difference in the world.

Most of my skirts are based on the concept of a circle skirt. I found a calculator program that does the hard work.
http://www.poppyrecords.co.uk/dressmaki ... tCalcs.php

You decide the amount of panels, the waist, the length and the hem length. With added seam allowance, you can make a template and make the amount of panels on a piece of fabric. Most fabrics are woven and don't have a nap. Then you can nest the panels to save material. If the fabric is not wide enough, you can stagger the panels.

Skirt pattern calculatorq.jpg


My hem seam is mostly 20 mm (3/4"), side seams 15 mm (1/2") and the seam where the zipper comes is 30 mm (1 1/4"). I start with zig-zagging the edges. Then I sew the seam where the zipper goes. Then the rest of the side seams. Then I prepare the waist band and sew it to the top of the skirt. The last handling is the hem.

The hem should be long enough to walk in the skirt. You can try it with a piece of string notted in a circle with the initial length and kept at the level of the hem. If you can walk with it then you are good to go. It also depends on the length of the skirt: the shorter, the shorter also the hem. Knee length skirts have a hem of about 140 cm (55") with me.

The number of panels is a personal choice but sometimes more panels means less waste of fabric. With 4 panels you can have a zipper in the front of back and pockets in the sides. With 6 panels it is nicer to have a full panel in front so you can put the zipper at the sides. With 8 panels the possibilities of a four panel skirt apply.
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Re: waist size

Postby Grok » Fri Oct 05, 2018 2:48 am

DIY tutorial online-"How to draft a circle skirt (with handkerchief variation".

http://www.clothingpatterns101.com/circle-skirt.html

There are several other online tutorials for these styles.
Last edited by Grok on Fri Oct 05, 2018 3:24 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Simple Skirt Rig

Postby beachlion » Sat Oct 06, 2018 3:40 am

I found a very informative set of tutorials about sewing on YouTube.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1gbLsjjmVeI
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Re: waist size

Postby Jim » Sat Oct 06, 2018 12:31 pm

Grok wrote:DIY tutorial online-"How to draft a circle skirt (with handkerchief variation".

http://www.clothingpatterns101.com/circle-skirt.html

There are several other online tutorials for these styles.

Looks interesting. I may try it. I got the fabric yesterday. (https://www.skirtcafe.org/forums/viewtopic.php?f=69&t=17983&start=30#p189585)
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Re: more advanced circle skirts

Postby Grok » Sat Oct 06, 2018 4:55 pm

My computer isn't displaying enough information to make a link, but here is a YouTube video which more sophisticated variations-"How to Make a Circle Skirt-For Any Age + Any Size".

Includes what is in effect a double circle skirt. And a variation in elastic waists, with an elastic strip sewed to the exterior.
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