How to Make a Circle Skirt
When I first learned how to make a circle skirt I couldn’t believe how easy it was! I recently made myself a really fun full circle skirt with space fabric for a galaxy themed party (you can see me wearing it in THIS picture.) I paired up with JOANN to bring you this fun tutorial for a skirt with a waistband. This tutorial will walk you through making a diy circle skirt and you can make it any size for yourself or for your little one. This is a great beginner sewing project.
How to Make a Circle Skirt
This post was sponsored by JOANN. I have been compensated but all ideas and opinions are my own.
How many yards of fabric does it take to make a circle skirt?
The yardage you need depends on two factors.
What kind of fabric are you using? If you are using a knit the fabric usually comes in a wider WOF (width of fabric) 54″, whereas if you are using cotton the WOF is typically 44″.
Who are you making the skirt for? If you are making a skirt for a child you will obviously need less fabric than if you are making the skirt for an adult.
So to figure out how much fabric you need we have to first get the measurements of the model. Measure around the waist and then add two inches. Divide this number by 6.28. Your number is represented by X in the diagram below.
Now measure the length between the waist and the knee (or wherever you want the skirt to fall.) This is Y in the diagram below.
To figure out how much fabric you will need you will need to know one more thing. To cut the skirt you will first fold your fabric in half long ways and then fold your fabric in half again short ways. So the square above represents four layers of fabric.
So…your fabric needs to be double the length of your X, plus double the length of your Y. You need a square that is larger than this size all the way around. Note that you might have to piece two pieces of fabric together to achieve this, which is just fine and means you will have a seam on either side of the skirt.
How do you measure your waist for a circle skirt?
To measure your waist you will need to use a flexible tape measure. Place the tape measure around your waistband find the spot where the tape measure meets.
You want to measure the place where you want the skirt to fall. You could make this skirt a high rise and measure higher on your waist or you can have it fall at your natural waist. This is a personal preference so you might have to do some trial and error to find what you like best.
What fabric is best for a circle skirt?
There are so many fabrics that will work well for a circle skirt. The most important thing to take into account is how you want the skirt to lie.
If you want a flowy skirt with a lot of movement you want to use a lightweight fabric like a knit or a silk type fabric.
If you want a stiffer skirt that holds its shape you will want to go with a more solid fabric like cotton.
Circle Skirt Tutorial:
What you need:
Fabric – If you haven’t shopped on Joann.com lately you HAVE to check out their new My Fabric option, see more about this below!
How to Sew a Skirt
- Measure your waist and find the measurements described above.
- Fold your fabric in half long ways and then again short ways. If you have pieced together two pieces of cotton make sure that one of the folds is on your seam line.
- From the corner where the two folds meet, measure down by your X from above. Mark or pin down from the corner several times. I use a washable marker for this step.
- Use the marker to draw a semi circle connecting your dots.
- Now using the line you just drew measure with your ruler using your Y value from above. Mark at several spots and then draw another line to connect these dots.
- Cut along the two lines you drew.
Adding a waistband:
This waistband method only works if you are using a stretch fabric. You will want to use an exposed elastic waistband if you are using a stiff fabric without stretch.
Next we are ready to add a waistband. Cut a piece of fabric that is your waist measurement by 3″ (or double the width of your elastic plus 1/2″ for seam allowance.) Make sure that the stretch of the fabric goes long ways with the width of your waist (not short ways along the 3″ side. Picture how you will stretch the band to get the skirt on.)
Place the two short ends of the fabric together right sides facing. Sew down 1.5″ then stop and leave 3/4″ open and sew the remainder closed.
Quick Tip: Use a strip Soft Stretch Heat N Bond, cut in half longways, to press down the seams inside the waist band. This will help when you are ready to insert the elastic.
- Now fold the waist band in half right sides facing out. Quarter the waistband by folding it in half and marking with clips and then fold in half the other way by matching up the clips and mark again.
- Repeat this step marking the quarters on the inside circle of the skirt.
- Match up the clip on the skirt and the waistband. Line up all the raw edges with the folded edge of the waistband facing down towards the skirt.
NOTE: The opening in your waistband (where we will add the elastic) should be facing out so that you can see it in this step. It should also be in the back if you have seams in your skirt.
- Use your walking foot to sew the waistband to the skirt.
- Cut your elastic to your waist measurement minus 1″. String the elastic through the waistband using the opening we left previously. Once you have pulled the elastic through make sure that the elastic is not twisted. Pull the elastic out and sew the two ends together. Overlap the elastic by 1″ and use a rectangle to sew in place.
- Make sure that the skirt fits before closing the opening with a ladder stitch (hand sewing, I know I am sorry!!!!)
- Hem the bottom seam. I find it easiest to slowly roll the hem under as I sew. A small hem is ideal with a circle of this sort. If it is too much to slowly sew and roll the hem go ahead and start and stop every few seconds to roll and clip the hem under. Use a zig zag stitch to capture the raw edge of the fabric.
Using MyFabric on JOANN:
MyFabric is a new feature on the JOANN website. You can change the scale, color, and fabric type of tons of different designs of fabric. Check it out HERE.
- First check out all the different designs to choose from. You can filter the designs using the selections on the left of the screen.
- Once you have selected a fabric you can click the green “customize design” button underneath the Add to Bag button.
- Depending on the design you will have several choices for customization. You can change the repeat type and scale under the Edit Design Tab.
- Use the rulers on the screen to see how large or small your scale is because the image on the screen might be misleading if you aren’t paying attention to the 1″ marks!
- There are some fabrics that allow you to change the color scheme (as pictured below.) Check out the palettes for collections of colors that work well together if you aren’t sure! You can also save your custom color palette if you are using several fabrics for a project.
- Once you have made all the changes you will hit Save in the top right corner.
- After you have hit save it will take you back to the purchase screen. This is where you will pick your fabric type. This is my FAVORITE part of the MyFabric feature. I love that you can use your custom design on tons of different fabric types. Note that it will tell you the WOF after you have selected a fabric type, which is super helpful for our skirt above!
- Grab your coupon and get to ordering! So fun right???
Do you have questions about how to make a circle skirt or how to use MyFabric? Share with me in the comments below!