12/9/19

DIY Christmas Skirt


I've always wanted to make a Christmas skirt and I'm not talking about the one around the bottom of the tree, although very similar in design. So when my mom gave me boxes of my late Grandma's sewing patterns I found this Simplicity 2654 circle skirt and couldn't wait to sew it. I loved that she had it cut out and pinned to a striped taffeta fabric my mom said she was "suppose to make her for a Christmas skirt..."(I'm going to finish that one next). When I think of a Christmas look I think jewel toned colors in fabrics like taffeta, velvet, or satin. I went with this lovely Ruby Taffeta from Stylish Fabric. I also wanted to add embroidery using Coats and Clark Metallic Embroidery Thread. I initially had plans to embroider around the bottom hem but silly me forgot how large a circle skirt circumference.  I've made Free Standing Lace (FSL) many times but never in a metallic thread so I thought why not for a sash to wrap around the waist. This metallic thread went through my machine like a dream. If you sew with metallic thread you know it can be tricky at times. I love these FSL accessories from Mo's Art Design Studio. Get the details below for tips and tutorials on how to sew your own Christmas Skirt.


Supplies:

DIY




A circle skirt is well just that, a circle with another center circle for your waist. You typically have to cut a front and back or front and 2 back pieces because the dimension are to large for you standard width of fabric. This vintage Simplicity pattern I used had 2 back pieces and the zipper was inserted on the side seam. 



Cut out your pattern and follow the pattern instructions to construct the skirt. Mine was as simple as sewing the side and back seams together to create the skirt. I used French seams for the taffeta. I found serging the edges wrinkled them so the French seam worked well for the taffeta fabric and skirt.

Sew the zipper:

Now this is how I prefer to set the zipper. 
  • Baste the seam like you typically would for a zipper and press flat.  The top of the zipper should be a 1/4" or so away from the top of the skirt for seam allowance of the waistband. 
  • Place the right side of the zipper against the wrong side of the skirt. I follow the zipper teeth just along the seam as perfectly as you can. Pin every inch or so to keep from shifting. I use tape occasionally as well. Test what works best for you.
  • Use your zipper foot and start just a tad below the zipper pull. Sew just along the teeth but not too close so you can open and close the zipper. 
  • Once you get to the bottom, stop, pivot so your needle aligns just a stitch length away from the bottom stop. Stitch the bottom a couple stitches and pivot again sewing back up the zipper to the just below the zipper pull. 
  • Flip right side over and you should have a nice even rectangle. 
  • Use a seam ripper and glide it through the baste stitch on the right side opening up the seam to reveal the zipper.
  • Last topstitch the rest of the zipper we left open on the top parts. 
  • Press

Sewing the circle skirt hem:
  •  When sewing a curved hem I begin by topstitching 1/4 in. from the raw edge. This helps sewing the curve and gives you an even 1/4in. line to fold over when pressing the hem.
  • Press so the top stitches are just barely over the fold on the wrong side. Then fold over again another 1/4" to encase the raw edge and sew. I stitch on the wrong side of the fabric just along the edge. 
  • Last, press again so you have a nice curved hem.

Sew the sash:

Cut your sash out on the bias for extra stretch. Mine was 6" x 45" This isn't necessary but is ideal if you plan to wrap it tight around your waist. 


Fold the strip in half and sew right sides together leaving a 2" gap in the center open. Make sure to sew a diagonal edge on each corner. My pointy end was toward the fold. 


Clip corners and flip right side out through the opening. Press and topstitch opening closed. 

Embroidery:

For the Free Standing Lace I'm using this pattern from OESD
Hoop the water-soluble stabilizer (I used 2 layers) and embroider the FSL with my Brother PE800. The Coat's and Clark Metallic Thread went through like a dream...


Cut around the design and then remove the additional stabilizer with water.


Place on the center of the sash and pin (I did overlap the leaves). Topstitch with the metallic thread (my bobbin had the red thread) through the vine and around some of the stitches to secure the FSL. 


I love how this turned out. The thread made it look like a metal embellishment. It would make a great headband too!


Now onto "rockin around the Christmas Tree!" 





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