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V and Co: how to: sewing with ruffle fabric: make a ruffle skirt

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happy labor day!
last week i got to play around with some ruffle fabric.
if you’ve not seen this ruffle fabric yet, or if you have not been able to sew with it, you are missing out.

this ruffle fabric is so easy to work with and so easy to make stuff out of that this skirt took me all of… i don’t know how long because it was so fast. i made it just like i made my mad men skirt the one made out of two pillow cases a while ago (only this time i didn’t make it as full) and this time i didn’t have to make a hem because this fabric doesn’t need it. see super easy.
the fabric color i used for this skirt was the charcoal cascading ruffle . there are other colors and width of ruffles as well on the site to choose from. i’ve sat and check out the site and know what i want to try next!
when i made this skirt i was excited to see how it turned out…but honestly i think that it turned out better because it makes me feel super pretty, and girly.

picture courtesy of my annoyed 9 year old who takes awesome pictures.

this skirt is super simple to make (and nothing new around the block). i took a few pictures of the steps i took to make my skirt:

this fabric comes in 48″ to 50″ width. so i was able to use minimal amount of fabric to make my skirt. (less than a yard!)
what you will need:
-1 to 2 yards of ruffle fabric, and some elastic band. i used 2 1/2″ wide elastic in black. (found at craft stores)
how to figure out the measurements:

measure around lower hips + 10″

first i measured around my lower hips or a little lower depending on your age (for those of you who don’t know what i’m talking about that just means you are still too young to know…but for the rest of you i’m talking about the largest part part of your bum that used to be a lot higher and now no matter how hard you try to perk that baby up , that part of your body just doesn’t want to do what it used to do like when you were… oh say 18.

yeah that part of the buttocks that’s what i’m talking about. measure around that.

then i added 10″ to it because i wanted the skirt to be a little fuller so it would give me cute curves.

for the length:

measure down from your waist to where you want the skirt to hit you.
take that measurement and then measure your fabric with the ruffles going vertical.


-find the nearest ruffle and then ADD ONE EXTRA RUFFLE TO THE MEASUREMENT, and cut under the extra ruffle.
– put aside fabric
next grab your elastic, and place it around your waist. (i wanted a high waist so i did it right around my waist.
– you want it snug, but not corset snug…so pull it gently, enough that it’s comfy.
– pinch it and make sure you have 1/2″ overlap, cut the excess.
-sew your ends using a 1/2″ seam allowance back stitching at the start and stop of your stitch.
-to cut down on the bulk of the seam, press open your elastic seam and sew down each side.

to assemble the tube part of your skirt:
-right sides together (and making sure your ruffles meet up, and are all facing the same way) pin in place your fabric on the length side of your skirt.
-sew using a 1/2″ seam allowance. (as you sew make sure you check that your seam you are making is catching all the ruffles laying flat. that would really suck if you have one or two ruffles going the wrong way)
-turn your skirt right side out.

-now that you have your elastic waste band all made, and the tube of your skirt made, it’s time to make it into a skirt.
*your elastic band needs to be right side out (the seam you created inside)
-the skirt needs to be right side out (ruffles facing out)

-place your seam where the ruffles meet, on the side. (normally it wouldn’t be a big deal to have the seam in the back, but i wanted to make sure the skirt flowed like it didn’t have a seam, and this was better executed on the side.)

– IMPORTANT- look at the picture above. notice how i placed the first ruffle up. we will be pinning right under the first ruffle so that the next ruffle is just under the waist band when we sew it.
like the picture below:

-now find the middle of your fabric and the seam on the back of the waist band.
-pin place, this is your starting point for the rest of your pinning.
-find the front middle pin in place.
-now you are going to find the middle between the two pins (basically your two sides) and pin those in place.

-continue to pin halfway in between the pins till you have about 2″ gaps between pins.
you will end up with a lot of pins but it’s worth it when you go to sew the skirt together. it’ll make it easier.
-next you are going to sew a top stitch around the bottom part of the elastic band (anywhere from 1/8″ to 1/4″ seam allowance.
– as you sew your seam make sure you pull your elastic to make the fabric gaps lay flat (this will also make it so your seam doesn’t break when you put on your skirt)
-gently pull your elastic to make the fabric lay flat against the elastic as you continue to sew around the whole waist.
-trim extra ruffle under your elastic waist.
you are so done.

taking pictures was a little more of a challenge…i first had the idea of taking them here:


i even dragged my next door neighbor i met only 6 weeks prior. she thought i was crazy but went with it. she’s very nice and normally takes me and all of my “isms” with a smile.

it was a super hot humid day and i was sweating like a pig by the end of it. we took this picture in between the super sunny hotness while there was a tiny bit of cloud cover. maybe i’ll use this location another day, but i didn’t like how the texture of the bale of hay was competing with the ruffles.

back to square one.
the simpleness of my son’s white walls would definitely highlight the awesome ruffles of the skirt. but all the “texture” of my children in the pictures i tried to take it was competing with the ruffles…and seriously my legs looked the best in this one too…oh well. the look on the girl noisemaker is better to of been caught in the picture than a good shot of my legs.

i just had to finally give up, and turn back into mom…seriously? how many times do i have to remind them: NO FOOD OUTSIDE THE KITCHEN AREA?
i finally had everyone doing homework and whatnots to finally have a little bit of time in a very white room, great lighting and a mirror.


i love how this skirt makes me feel. i feel all dressed up and really it looks amazing on. but what i love most is that really for how fancy it looks it didn’t cost too much to make, and it took hardly any time or effort!
that my friends is TOTALLY worth it.

hope you are having a fab labor day weekend and day. it’s nice to have jake and the kids home on a monday (with the promise of everyone going back to school and work tomorrow, so i can keep my momentum going.)
i’m making some of this to have with chips and we’re hopefully BBQ-ing (because that means i don’t have to cook or clean the dishes!)
life is good.
we are happy.
i like saying that.

ps: i’m working on a FAQ post. mainly about these bracelets, had no idea that post would cause so much traffic or questions…but i’m working on the answers. 🙂

we’ll talk soon.