How to Make a Full Umbrella Skirt

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The term umbrella skirt has multiple meaning. The umbrella skirt can refer to a gored skirt with many panels for a full, flowy look, or it means a skirt made from old umbrellas. Whether you choose to make your skirt out of umbrellas or another fabric choice, make a full skirt by sewing flared panels together. The effect is similar to a circle skirt that looks chic and flatters nearly any figure. Make as many or as few panels as you want to achieve the desired fullness of the skirt.

Things You'll Need

  • Tape measure
  • Butcher's paper
  • Marker
  • Straight pins
  • Fabric
  • Scissors
  • Sewing machine
  • Safety pin
  • 3/4-inch elastic
  • Iron
  • Ironing board
  • Measure around your waist and hips with the tape measure and write down the measurements. Measure the length from your waist to hips and from your hips down to where you want the skirt to end.

  • Divide your waist measurement by the number of panels you want in the skirt. When you add the panels together, they should match your waist measurement.

  • Draft a pattern for each panel. On a piece of butcher’s paper, draw a line across the top that is one-sixth of your waist measurement, or use a fraction based on how many panels you want to have. Add about one-half inch to your measurement for seam allowances.

    Draw another line two inches above your waistline that is the same length; the distance between these lines will become your waistband.

    Draw another horizontal line that is the distance from your waist to hip. This line should be about one-sixth of your hip measurement. Add an inch or more for additional fullness in your skirt.

    Draw another line at the bottom of your paper that is the same distance from your hips to the bottom of the skirt, plus one inch for the hem. This line should be the widest, about four inches longer than your hip line, and it will be your hem.

    Draw a flared line from your waist line to the hem line on both sides.

  • Lay your pattern piece on top of your fabric and pin in place. Cut out six panels of fabric based on your pattern.

  • Pin two panels right sides together and stitch the seam. Continue adding panels to the skirt, always sewing with right sides together. After adding the last panel, pin the skirt with right sides together and stitch the final seam.

  • Fold down 1 inch at the top of your waist edge into the skirt, placing wrong sides are together. Pin in place and press with an iron. Stitch close to the raw edge, leaving a 1-inch opening.

  • Fasten a safety pin to the end of a piece of elastic cut to your waist measurement. Thread through the waist band casing. Ensure the elastic is not twisted. Overlap the two ends of the elastic about one inch, pin in place, and stitch. Stitch down the opening of your waist band casing.

  • Turn up the bottom edge of the skirt about one-half inch and pin in place. Press with an iron. Stitch the hem close to the raw edge.

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  • Photo Credit Brand X Pictures/Brand X Pictures/Getty Images
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