Thursday, 9 May 2013

How-to sew a Hand stitched skirt

A DIY-sewing project by i can cu

Now, after practicing the Cross stitch ;)it is time to start the first project. It should be the season of showing more leg but it is also nice to wear one over leggings or tights, a skirt. This project is easy and can be repeated over and over again, shorter, longer, softer, brighter . . 

What you need
. Stretchy Jersey (anything that drapes nicely)
. Bottom seam of a T-shirt or a fold-over elastic band
. Thin Pins
. Gutermann Buttonhole / Top Stitch Thread in colour(s) of your choice
. Embroidery Scissors
. Milward Sharps Needle No4
. Cutting Matt
. Plastic Ruler
. Tape Measure
. Rotary Cutter
. Tailor's chalk or an erasable pen
. Fabric scissors

First measure around your waist, your hips and around the widest part of your bottom.

Half the fabric, align it and cut the edges straight (on one side, which will be the raw end of the skirt).Choose the length of your skirt, mark it and cut again.Cut the fabric in half now along the grain line using your fabric scissors, which leaves you with 2 halves of your skirt.Take one half and half it again along the grain line. Transfer the measurements taken earlier starting from the edge: first the waist measurement, leaving a 10 cm gap, then mark the hip measurement, leaving again a 10 cm gap and then mark the last measurement.Connect these 3 marks with your chalk or erasable pen, add 1 cm for seam allowance and cut, using your rotary cutter. Repeat the same for the other half. Half this half, transfer your measurements leaving a 10 cm gap between them, connect the marks and add 1 cm seam allowance and cut. If you don't like the angle and it would make your skirt too wide or too narrow, slightly adapt it but leave the waist measurement at the original point or very close to it, otherwise your waistband will have to accommodate too much fabric and this will make it very wavy.

Now you can start pinning. Assemble both skirt halves, right sides facing each other, pin both ends first, which helps to align the fabric and then pin the rest, repeat for the other side.

Take about 2.5 skirt lengths of your thread and cut it in an angle to thread your needle  easier. Make one single knot close to the edge and make a double knot about 7 mm further up. See here and here for knot details.

Start sewing with making a loop (up through the fabric, around the edge and up through the fabric again right next to the previous hole) and continue in a straight line a straight stitch, try to stay about 8 mm from the edge and keep the stitches even.

When you reached the end run your fingers along the stitches finding the right tension between fabric and thread. Finish with a loop and knot off, first make a double knot close to the fabric using your nails to gently push it there and a single knot a bit further away, trim.

Repeat on the other side. The single knot, the double knot, loop around the edge, the straight stitch, adjusting the tension, the loop, double knot, single knot, trim.
Turn the skirt to the right side and fold one seam to the back and start pinning. On the other side fold the seam the same way, so they both face back and pin too.

The Cross Stitch
Thread the needle, make a single and double knot and loop the thread around the edge of your fabric. Choose to loop through the folded seam (thicker). Come up again through the fabric (below the created line) making the first bottom part of the cross stitch. 
The top part of the cross stitch is exactly the same but moved to the right. You always come up again where the last stitch ended.

Down and through the fabric for the bottom part, come up again to finish the bottom part where the last top stitch ended and move to the top part and through the fabric again, up and so on. Finished one side, make a loop and the knots, trim and repeat on the other side. Keep the top and bottom part of your cross stitch in a line, so the stitch looks regular. If you have to restart with a new thread make your knots and continue. More details for the cross stitch here

The Waist Band
Use as much waist band as comfortable around your waist and add 2 cm for overlap. 
Start pinning at the back, half the elastic band, and pin again. Quarter the elastic band and pin. . . Pin you way around, and keep checking that the fabric is fully tucked in while stretching it.Start sewing a cross stitch next to the overlap (so you go over the overlap in the end). The first few stitches can be tricky but as soon as you moved along it will be easier to find a rhythm again. Do the cross stitch all the way around so the last stitch meshes the first. Knot off, trim. Finished!I hope you enjoyed making this skirt, here is the movie this project is referring to. Thank you and see you at i can cu!

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