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Easy Vintage 60s Wrap Skirt Tutorial

April 30, 2013

Wrap skirts are easy to sew and effortless to wear. They are great for all kinds of fabrics and seasons. I was really inspired by a 1960s wrap skirt, Simplicity 8126, that I had to tell you guys how to make it without needing a pattern!

Simplicity 8126

First, you have to draft your patterns. You can do this on a large roll of builders paper (which is what I use), tape together paper bags, tape together computer paper, OR if you are confident, you can do this directly on your fabric. Make sure you have a straight edge and some tool to give you a 90° angle.

For your fabric, think about your climate and what season you want to wear this skirt in. For spring/summer, use fabrics like cotton and blends, rayon, linen, sateen, pique, poplin and light denim. For fall/winter, use fabrics like double knit polyester, medium weight denim, corduroy, wool and wool blends. You can use border print fabric, add ribbon or trims, etc as variations. I will give you the dimensions to make a shorter version but you can add as much length as you want down to a maxi (but I’d only suggest a maxi version with the lighter fabrics). I think I’m going to have to take that border print fabric I have stapled over my window in the kitchen down because I just found a use for the fabric!

Using the photo below (click to enlarge), measure out all your pieces to the lengths specified. Add inches to the “width” of piece A to make the skirt longer. The instructions will assume you are using the bias binding and all seam allowances for ⅝” are included. Green pieces are required, blue are optional. This skit will fit a 23-29″ waist but can be easily graded up or down.Mixy Mitzy Wrap Skirt Tutorial

Items Needed:

  • 2-2½ yards of 44/45″ fabric, depending on optional pieces or not
  • Extra fabric to match plaids, stripes, and one way designs (this pattern is not good for diagonals)
  • bias seam binding
  • Four ½” buttons (if using suspenders)
  • ⅜ yard of ¼” wide cotton twill tape (if using suspenders)
  • thread, pins

If using the pockets:

  1. On the wrong side of the pocket B, stitch the bias seam binding to the edge you will be using as the top, with the bottom of the tape hitting 2″ from the top of the pocket.
  2. Stitch the top under ¼” on the upper edge of the pocket.
  3. Turn the upper edge to the outside 2″ (the bottom of the tape) to form a facing.
  4. Stitch ⅝”  along all raw edges of the pocket. Make sure you are sewing the facing you folded into the stitches (but do not stitch across it).
  5. Press the facing back to the inside. Press under the remaining raw edges inside along the stitching. Slip-stitch the facing.
  6. On the outside of pieces A, pin the pockets 8″ from the left edge on one piece and 8″ from the right edge of the other piece and putting the pockets at a height comfortable for use (perhaps 10″ from the bottom, you gotta figure this one out!).
  7. Stitch the pockets to the skirt ¼” from the side and bottom edges.

And onto the instructions for the skirt:

  1. Stitch the centers of the skirt A right sides together. If using pockets, this is the side to stitch.
  2. To form the pleat, measure 5⅝” and machine-baste the shorter side (the side the newly created seam is on).
  3. Bring the seam to the center and press. Baste across the waistline edge to hold the pleat in place.
  4. Fold and press 1¼” on the smaller back edges.
  5. Stitch under ¼”on the back smaller edge. If using a heavy fabric, encase the seam in seam binding.
  6. Press up the hem.
  7. Stitch one edge of bias seam binding ¼” over the raw edge OR slip-stitch the edge.
  8. Slip-stitch the hem.
  9. Press longer edges to the inside to where you want your hem (at least 1¼”), forming facings. Repeat 6-7.
  10. Machine-baste twice across the waistline edge ½” and ¼” from the edge. Do not sew the pleat but up to it.
  11. Gather the upper edge. Be sure you are not gathering any of the pleat.
  12. Stitch piece D to piece C.
  13. Pin to the waist of the skirt by centering piece C to the center seam of pieces A right sides together.
  14. Adjust the gathers and machine- baste. Stitch. Trim the seam and press the seam up.
  15. Fold the waistband and tie ends in half lengthwise with right sides together. Stitch the small ends together. Stitch the longer ends together from the edge up to the skirt (but do not continue) and repeat for the other side. Trim the seam and corners. Turn and press.
  16. Press under ⅝” on the remaining edge of the waistband.
  17. Turn right side out and press.
  18. On the inside of the skirt, slip-stitch the band along the seam.
  19. Lap the left of the skirt back over the right and bring the tie ends to the front. Wear them in a bow or knot in the center.

If doing the version with suspenders:

  1. Make the skirt the same way as above up until step 12.
  2. Cut 4 pieces of cotton twill tape 2½” long. Fold in half, forming loops.
  3. On the outside of pieces C and D (which have now been sewn together), pin the loops to the waistband 3″ from the edges on C and 4¾ from the edge on each D piece (edge closest to C).
  4. Stitch.
  5. Complete the rest of the steps in the above section (13-19).
  6. Fold the suspender piece E in half lengthwise with right sides together.
  7. Stitch, leaving an opening 7⅜” from the bottom of the suspender that is 2″ wide and an opening large enough (not near the just mentioned) for when you have to turn the suspenders right side out.
  8. Trim the seam and corners.
  9. Turn the suspender and slip-stitch the larger opening. Press.
  10. Repeat for the other suspender piece, leaving the gap on the opposite side.
  11. Fold the stay piece F in half lengthwise. Stitch the long edge and trim the seam. Turn inside out and press with the edge in the center.
  12. Insert the raw edges of the stay between the opening in the suspender pieces. Machine baste.
  13. Hand-sew the stay to the opening edges of the suspenders with an invisible stitch. Be sure each end of the stay is sewn to both opening edges of the suspenders.
  14. Pin the suspenders  to the waistband at the button loops and adjust to fit. Sew buttons to the spenders.

Hope you enjoyed this tutorial. It seems wordy but is pretty easy. When I get my machine back from the shop and have a camera, I’ll have a photo of the finished garment to show you guys. Have fun!

On a different and final note, thank you to One Crafty Chickadee for providing awesome photos for me to use on the Side Tie Shorts. She made them with Egyptian cotton sheets. I love army green and think it’s quite a versatile color! You can view more photos on the listing. Thank you again!

One Crafty Chickadee

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