Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Gypsy skirt pattern and tutorial - Sew Pretty Sew Free Exclusive

gypsy skirt sewing tutorial

This is another one of those - bubbling inside my head - patterns. I have seen many version of this skirt, in various sew and shows online and in stores too. I had always wanted to make one, but circular cuts kind of make me nervous.
Finally I couldn't ignore the tiny voice in my head and thought- at the most I'll waste some fabric and an hour ( yeah its that simple...I don't know what I'm afraid of really) let me just go ahead and do it. So I did some calculations in my head, got off my butt and started cutting. Less than an hour later I had this skirt. Honestly, its a real sew easy project. Other than cutting the pattern ( which has only 2 pieces) there's really not much to this skirt. But it looks really cool, and has a nice twirl factor.
I made the pattern in 2-3 years size, which I'm sharing here. More importantly though, I show you how to draft this pattern yourself in any size. It is pretty easy and quick.


Knit fabrics in 2 coordinating colors - I'm recommending knit fabrics because they're more forgiving. Even if you don't get the pattern just right at the first go you will still do ok with the knits. You can use wovens once you're confident about the pattern. Since the pattern is cut in circular strips it uses a lot more fabric than regular skirts. I used up 2 XL sized tank tops to make this skirt in 2-3T size. I recommend doubling whatever amount of fabric you use for a regular skirt.

Elastic for the waistband - I reused the hem of a Tshirt for the waistband in the skirt above, if you want to do the same you will need narrow ( quarter inch) elastic.
If you're making the waistband from scratch you may want to use the wider ( 1 inch ) elastic.


Here's the pdf pattern for sewing the skirt in 18-24 months size. Cut 8 pieces ( 4 in each color), use the line that is shown as 'spike' while cutting your pattern. Ignore the 'Flush' line. 

Drafting the pattern:
You could also draft your own pattern for other sizes. It is pretty easy to do it.

First you need to measure the required length of the skirt. Lets call it L1. Now calculate L=L1-0.5 inch

Now take a big bowl or plate and measure L along its circumference. Mark the begin and end points of L. Now take a big paper and draw along the circumference of the bowl, between the points you have marked.

Now draw a 3 inch line starting at the top of the curve you made in step 3.

At the other end of the horizontal line, again place the bowl and draw the curve between the two points. The only thing to remember is that the skirt has to flare from top to bottom, so make sure the bowl is not placed in the same curve as the first one, but makes a curve away from the first one.

Join both the end points. This will become the hemline if we had to sew a skirt with even hemline.

But since we're making a gypsy skirt with uneven hem, draw another line perpendicular to the second curve. Extend the first curve to meet the line we just drew. Lets call this line "SPIKE" and the one we drew earlier "FLUSH". We are going to use "SPIKE" line for this skirt.

Now calculating the number of pieces making the skirt.

First measure the waist and add 2 inches to it - lets call it W

Now lets assume a half inch sewing margin for simplicity.  So divide W by 2 inches. The 'quotient' is the number of pieces you will need to finish this skirt.  Cut half of the pieces from one color and the other half of them in another color. If the number of pieces is odd then add one more piece to make both the colors equal. It will adjust when we add the elastic.

Assembling the skirt:

sewing a redondo

1. This part is really easy. Basically place convex side of one strip with the concave side of the other strip in different colors and sew with right sides together. Just make sure to keep the top of the strip at the top. If you cut it right then one side of the strips will be longer than the other, thats ok. Don't stretch any of the strips to make them equal, just sew normally until one strip ends. The extra length is what causes all the spikes at the hem. Repeat with all the strips. Join the last two together to complete the skirt. ( the pieces shown above are from another project but the construction is same. Gypsy skirt pattern just has spikes at the hemline, instead of a straight hem as shown below, but you use the same method to join two pieces)

2. For the waistband just cut the tank/tee one inch above the hemline. Measure the top of the skirt and cut the required width. Insert an elastic with the help of a safety pin and sew the two ends together.

3. Sew the waistband to the top of the skirt made in step 1. Right sides together.

Put it on the child. Enjoy the twirls.

If you like this skirt you may like this colorblocked jumper too. It has been cut the same way but with the "flush" line instead of spike. Here is the tutorial for Colorblocked Twirly Jumper on Blooms And Bugs.

Update: The tutorial has been featured on A Round Tuit and Craft Gossip.

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  1. this is gorgeous!!! I hope you will consider uploading it as a free tutorial into the sewing directory over at SewSet!

    Thank you so much!

  2. How fun! 'Love this idea. Thank you for the pattern. -Marci

  3. Beautiful skirt Anshu!

    Thanks for linking to a Round Tuit!
    Hope you have a fabulous week!
    Jill @ Creating my way to Success

  4. such a cute skirt - pinned to make for baby girl once she gets bigger!

  5. Thank you for participating in Show Your Stuff Blog Hop, You are invited to come back:

  6. very nice thank you so much ^_^

  7. Just found your blog - what a fun skirt :) Thanks for you DIY´s :)

  8. Thank you for sharing this very helpful tutorial. You and the skirt look fabulous!

  9. how would you make this in an adult size?

  10. Saw this on All Free Sewing & though it was an adult skirt... soooo bummed :(

  11. @ Angela, Chrissie,

    The skirt could be easily made into an adult skirt. You just need to reduce the curve ( since adults may not prefer too much flounce and twirl) and measure your length and width instead of child's. Then just follow the tutorial and it should still work. The only thing is that it could be a fabric intensive project.
    Hope it helps...let me know if you have any questions.

  12. thank you for the pattern! makes a gorgeous skirt in slippery chiffon.. THANK YOU!