How to Make a Bubble Skirt


So long as you have some basic sewing skills, a bubble skirt is fairly easy to make. In fact, you can also convert an existing dress into a bubble skirt by altering the hem and adding an elastic waistband.

Things You'll Need

  • Elastic waistband
  • Fabric
  • Needle and thread
  • Sewing machine
  • Chalk (if working from a pattern)
  • Acquire two lengths of pleated fabric, ideally cotton, though any lightweight fabric will do. The lengths of fabric that you buy should both be about 25 percent wider than the width of your hips, because you're going to narrow the top of the skirt with a waistband and leave the wider bottom to expand out into a bubble skirt.

  • Buy an elastic waistband of a suitable size for your hips. Double-check to make sure that you have thread that matches the color of the fabric you selected.

  • Fit the fabric by holding it against your thighs (or the thighs of the person you're making the skirt for). Allow a little extra room on both sides, keeping in mind that both the front and back pieces of the skirt need to wrap around the wearer's leg about halfway. Leave a little extra room on the front side of the skirt, and cut away any excess material.

  • Sew the two pieces of fabric together.

  • Roll over the seam of the front piece of the skirt (about 2 inches) and sew its bottom edge to the front of the material to make a casing for your elastic waistband.

  • Thread the elastic waistband through the casing, winding it around on all sides. Tighten it so it fits the person for whom the skirt is intended, leaving some leeway for the band to expand and contract as needed. Secure the waistband by top-stitching it into the casing.

  • Fold about a 1/2 inch of the bottom edge of skirt underneath. Turn the skirt inside-out and sew a hem into place to ensure the final product has a tailored look.

Tips & Warnings

  • Cut the top of an old dress off and simply sew an elastic waistband into the hem, folding the top edges over the top of the band and sealing them with top-stitching to make a bubble skirt. You'll save time tracing patterns and cutting fabric, not to mention money on sewing materials.
  • Find a bubble skirt pattern on (see Resources below).
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