It was so easy I can’t believe it–I want to make 10 more of these! Here’s the timeline:
Last night: Measured myself and drew out some schematics for cutting out the dress.
Today at lunchtime: Drove to Hobby Lobby , where print cotton jersey knits were on sale for $3.99 a yard (I hear you can get them for $1 a yard at Wal-Mart, but that’s all the way across town). You could choose from camouflage, pink with white floral, pink with white polka dots, blue stripes, blue with white polka dots, acid green with black polka dots, black with white polka dots, and white with black brocade. I decided on blue with white polka dots–thought about the stripes, but they don’t play well with circle skirts, and thought about the black, but thought it would be better to minimize the visual contrast between RS and WS of the fabric. I got 4 yards of it and have a lot left over.
Today at 7 PM: Cut out the four pieces for the dress. Tried to set up the sewing machine, found that the presser foot no longer wanted to raise itself up, cursed and struggled for a while. Ate dinner.
Today at 8 PM: Finally got the presser foot working again.
Today at 8:30 PM: Finished sewing the dress. One seam for the waist, one seam to stitch closed the waistband.
Here are the schematics I used:
- Circle skirt: Fold 60″ cotton jersey into quarters, then cut a 27″ quarter circle out of the fabric. I did this freehand, with one end of the measuring tape held at the central corner, inching the measuring tape gradually upwards and cutting the curve in short arcs.
- Circle skirt waist: Cut a 3.5 inch arc out of the central corner. Against all odds, this made a waistband that was slightly too big. According to mathematical principles, I thought this would give me a 22-inch waistband… is my math off? 2 pi r equals circumference? Anyway, it definitely ended up bigger than 22 inches.
- Straps: Erring on the side of slightly too wide, since I know the jersey fabric wants to roll up (it’s basically stockinette, after all) I cut two pieces along the length of the fabric, 13 inches times 100 inches. Basically these were lengthwise strips from the long edges of the entire remaining length of the cut of fabric.
- Waistband: I cut a crosswise piece from the end after cutting the straps lengthwise. This ended up being about 30 inches by 12 inches. I folded it in half for a 6-inch-tall waistband and overlapped the ends by about an inch when sewing it to the waist of the skirt.
I assembled this all with a straight stitch on my sewing machine, with the overlap of the waistband hidden behind the middle of one of the straps. I decided to sew the ends of the waistband together when I was done. Two seams.
If you decide to make one, I highly recommend pinning or clipping the pieces together before you start sewing. Once you’ve gone around about a quarter of the waist of the circle skirt, you just have a giant, tangled mess of twisted-up fabric and it’s very difficult to keep it all flat and aligned.