July 29, 2011

Shirred Pocket Skirt (and Serger hints)

 Finally - - the tutorial on a Shirred Pocket Skirt.  Sorry this has taken me so long to put together - - but worth the wait!  This skirt is super easy to make and always gets lots of compliments.  Here we go on how to make it...

I used this great yellow fabric I found at Hancock's Fabric.  It's sersuckerish, so it's nice and breezy for summer.  It was also 60in wide instead of the normal 44in, so I had lots to play with.

I cut a piece and held it up to myself (very specific measuring method - not!) - I made it as long as I wanted it from my waist to my knee, then around the waist I left a generous amount of room to get in and out of it.  Here's looking down as I held it out from my waist (don't worry, I'm trying it on over my clothes - I know you were concerned...)
So with it wrapped around me, that place where I'm holding would be my one seam.  If your fabric isn't wide enough, you could always have 2 seams.  So sew the seam - now you have a big tube.

Sidetrack - - I just want to show you a couple of different ways to use a serger - I used the regular serged edge for that seam.  It's picture is on the left.  The picture on the right is of the hem.  I didn't want to do a real hem (you could if you want, I'm just lazy) so the picture on the right is my serger on the "p" - I think it's picolt - it's kind of like a rolled hem, just quicker.  See the difference??

Alright, moving on - so you have your tube, and it's hemmed however you want.  Next, the waist - the shirring - don't be afraid of it!!  Shirring is just sewing with elastic thread.


Some pointers:
--get the thread in the elastic department - it's way cheaper than the stuff in the thread department and has a ton more on it.
--hand-wind your bobbin - that's exactly what it says use your hands, and wrap the elastic thread around and around your bobbin
--sew like normal!  That's it.  You can read more on sewing with shirring on this dress post.

So I didn't have to start and stop alot, I sewed the first line up by the edge, and when it came around to meet itself I just dropped down a little ways and kept on sewing - so it's a giant spiral  - - hopefully you can tell what I'm talking about in this picture:
Now, for the fun part of shirring -- grab your iron and shoot steam on it - seriously!  It will make the elastic thread shrink up and really gather up your fabric - it's like magic!!
I think it's so cool I even made a video for you - - you can humor me and watch it - it's only 30 seconds (that's 30 seconds of pure shirring steam delight!!)


After that I tried it on so I could see where to put pockets.  I put some edging around my pockets to make them stand out, and turned the fabric on them so the stripes go the opposite way of the skirt.  Then just sewed them right down.
That's it!!  This is really quick and easy  - great project for a beginner sewer.  Funny how one skirt can have lots of different looks:

Photo shoot via my 4 year old - I think she did pretty good:

So, go try this!!  Have fun with it!

author

About Author:

Mandy is a craft blogger who loves to blog and enjoys all things crafty, sewing, and DIY - she feels that if she can do something, you can too, and provides tutorials to help you along the way. She loves being a mom to 4 awesome kiddos and blogs from the Kansas City Area. Follow her on Facebook or Twitter or Google +

16 Fabulous Comments:

This is seriously so cute! I love the fabric! LOVE LOVE! I have never sewn with elastic thread but after seeing this I will have to give it a try!!! Love your blog!

xoxo, Ashley J @ mommybydaycrafterbynight.blogspot.com

I've never used elastic thread but will just to shoot steam at it. Love the skirt.

What a great tutorial! (I went to your link). And, as usual, you look adorable in whatever you wear.

Cute skirt. I now want to try shirring! Thank you for sharing.
Blessings,
Lorilee

Shirring is something I have not had a chance to try yet...on my list! I'd love if you linked up to my Weekend Craft Hop! http://sewplicity.blogspot.com/2011/07/weekend-craft-hop_30.html

I've never tried shirring, but this is so cute, I'll definitely have to try soon! Any tips?

I've had two unsuccessful attempts at shirred skirts, but yours makes me want to try again. I also like how you've got the pockets on the outside-an extra cute touch!

Cute skirt!! I linked to your tutorial on Craft Gossip Sewing:
http://sewing.craftgossip.com/tutorial-easy-shirred-waist-skirt/2011/07/31/
(link is scheduled to go live tonight)

--Anne

Love, love. I just looked at elastic thread other day and was wondering how to use it to smock.... Thanks!

Love the skirt Mandy!! I have been wanting to do something with elastic thread and this skirt looks perfect! Thanks for linking up to Think Pink Sundays. I featured you today! :)

Awesome. I will give this a try:>

I'm embarrassed to ask this, but I am such a beginner at sewing, like got my machine over the weekend. When you say hand-wind the bobbin, I understand that. But, on the other thread that you use from the top of the machine and that goes through the needle...is that regular thread, or more elastic thread?

great question Amy! the top thread is regular thread. it will show on the top of your fabric, so this way you can have a colored regular thread to match your fabric, and it'll be the elastic thread on the backside. Good luck!

I'm interested to know one year later how the elastic waist has held up after being steamed? Did it weaken the shirring at all or strengthen it?

It's been fine - it hasn't weakened at all - the same as the day I made it!

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