Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Pleated Skirt Tutorial

What girl doesn't want a fun pleated skirt?!?  This would also make a great skirt for a cheerleader costume for Halloween!

This is a pretty simple tutorial...if you can sew a straight line and use an iron, you should be able to handle this. 

I cut my strips 3" wide and 10" long.  Why 3"???  Because that's the width of my ruler! LOL! My daughters waist is about 20", and I used 9 strips of each fabric to make the skirt about 24".

From Pleated Skirt
Start with one of each strip.  Put the right sides together and sew a seam down one side--my seams were 3/8". 
Press the seam open.
Fold the strips (wrong sides together) and press the strips together so the seam is right along the edge.

Take the strips back to your sewing machine and sew another seam (same width as you made your previous seam) along the edge you just pressed.

From Pleated Skirt
Take another strip of fabric (alternating the fabric pieces as you go) and repeat the same steps. 
I found it worked best to do each of the above steps to each piece as I went, rather than sewing the all the pieces and then ironing/sewing the second seam on each piece.

To finish, sew each of the end pieces together (they should not be the same fabric) as you did above.
It should look something like this:
Whatever fabric you plan to have on the inside of the pleat, put that in the center.  Take the seam that is on each side and bring that to the middle. 
From Pleated Skirt
You can either pin each pleat around the skirt and then sew each pleat...or I had better luck folding each pleat and putting a few stitches in to hold it in place as I went. 

You can do the waistband however you would like.
I took a 2.5" strip and folded it in half.
From Pleated Skirt
Pin the strip to the outside of the skirt.
Sew the waistband to the skirt--make sure you adjust your seam allowance to cover the stitches you sewed to keep the pleats closed.  Also make sure the inside pleat feeds through without getting bunched up.
I used the serger to finish the seam--you can also zig-zag along the edge.
From Pleated Skirt
I used the serger on the hem so I didn't have to do a double fold. However you choose to finish your hem, make sure the outside seam on each pleat is facing whatever direction it needs to--I tend to forget about that part and have to take out my hem as the seam on the pleat gets folded the other direction and sewn down (hope that makes sense!).
From Pleated Skirt

I also made a denim skirt. I upcycled a pair of my husband's jeans that didn't fit him anymore. They were a nice, dark, lightweight denim. I salvaged the original waistband from the jeans to make a waistband for this skirt. I also made adjustable elastic (I sewed a few button holes in a piece of elastic) and sewed a button on each side so the skirt can grow with Jilli Bean.

From Pleated Skirt

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Sunday, October 10, 2010

Potty Seat Tote Bag

My Jilli Bean is pretty much potty trained, but she's only 18 months old so I need to keep a portable (folding) toilet seat cover with us when we are out since she's too little to use a big potty without her hanging on for dear life.  When a little one has to go...there's no time to waste.

I made this little tote bag to keep all the potty necessities--so I can grab and go without digging through my bag, and it's cute enough to carry in the bathroom.  I have the seat (in a ziploc bag), wipes (in a plastic baggie so they don't dry out as fast), a plastic bag in case of an accident, an extra pair of panties and I need to pick up a little bottle of hand sanitizer.

I measured the seat and got my dimensions from that (my finished bag is about 7"x9")--I squared off the corners too.  I also lined the bag with plastic--I took off the stretched out elastic from a shower hat and used the plastic.

Jilli Bean loved carrying the bag into the bathroom in at church today...on one of her many "I gotta potty" trips.
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Saturday, October 2, 2010

Hankerchief Skirt

I had picked up two hankerchief's at Walmart for $1 each.  They've been laying around waiting for me to figure out what I wanted to do with them.

I saw the Hankerchief Skirt Tutorial by Creating by Cami and then knew exactly what I needed to do with the hankerchiefs! 

The tutorial was easy and the whole skirt didn't take very long to do.  The only thing I did different was add a casing and inserted elastic instead of doing a knit waistband.  You get 8 pieces when you use 2 handerchiefs, and I had 2 pieces left, so I sewed them together and cut a strip for the waistband from that.

From Hankerchief Skirt
From Hankerchief Skirt

I think I will pick up a couple hankerchiefs in a different pattern and do another skirt...and one of these days I will get Jilli Bean a shirt that actually fits her!