Saturday, 18 July 2015

How To: Matching Maxi Skirt + Top

 photo ready1.jpg
I've been on a little sewing hiatus (mainly due to moving continents!) but managed to get a couple small projects in while home in Finland. I recently added this 2-piece to my inspiration folder, and after some search found a stripy 100% cotton in an interior design store in the small town our summer house is in. Should be perfect for the average 360 annual sunny days I'm in for soon..!

 photo 0 Tools.jpg
Fabric, 3 m (I used a 100% cotton)  |  Scissors  |  Pins  |  Pencil or fabric marker  |  Sewing machine + thread  |  + Invisible zipper and measurement tape, which didn't make the picture

The skirt

 I. Cut the front and back pieces of the skirt out. The key measurements to take: circumference of your waist, your maximum hip circumference, and the length from your waist down to where you want the skirt to end. Confirm you have it right by wrapping the measuring tape around your hips, holding it in place, and making sure you can slide it up and down over your bum. If you don't need to adjust the measurement to be longer, you've got it. Divide these measurements by two and you have the width of your pieces - mark a few key spots and cut the pieces out, finish raw edges with a zig zag.
 photo 1 Cut skirt.jpg
 II. Place the pieces right sides facing, and pin the other side together. Stop pinning where you want the side slit to end, sew a straight stitch down stopping at your final pin.
 photo 2 Pin side.jpg
 III. Cut out a strip for the waist band, finish edges with zig zag, and fold in half right side out.
 photo 3 Waist band.jpg
 IV. Pin the waist band to the skirt's right side, sew a straight stitch all the way.
 photo 4 Pin waist band.jpg
 V. Pin the invisible zipper in place and sew with the zipper foot. I have a pretty sharp curve on my waist, so I pinned the zipper at a curve as well. Make sure you confirm the spot before by wrapping the skirt around yourself and marking the correct size. Sew the other side of the zipper to the other side of the skirt.
 photo 5 Pin zipper.jpg
 VI. Pin the edges after the zipper together, and just like with the other side, mark the length of the slit with the final pin. Sew a straight stitch from about 1 cm before the end of the zipper, down until the last pin.
 photo 6 Pin side.jpg
 VII. Finish the zipper by folding the ends down and adding a small stitch to keep them in place. Finally, Make small 1 cm folds on the hem and the side slits, and sew a straight stitch to finish the hem.
 photo 7 Finish zipper.jpg

The top

I. Fold the fabric so you can trace the front and the back pieces on one go, and cut out the two identical pieces, something like this. No need to stress out about the size too much, the fit of this one is very loose. My top was about 50 cm wide, and I measured the width of the V of the neck by taking a measurement from the edge of my shoulder to the same spot on the other side. You want to make sure this V is not too wide, otherwise the top will end up falling off all the time - Better to go with a slightly more narrow V if you're unsure, you can always cut it bigger if needed. Zig zag the raw edges of the bottom, the V, and the shoulder lines.
 photo 8 Cut top.jpg
II. Finish the neckline with a small slit at the bottom of the V, so you can fold a seam and sew a straight stitch about 0.7 cm from the edge.
 photo 9 Neckline.jpg
III. Place the pieces right sides facing, pin the shoulders together and sew a straight stitch on both sides.
 photo 10 Pin shoulder.jpg
IV. Create some shape to the top by cutting out small pieces at the sides. Finish the remaining raw edges with a zig zag.
 photo 11 Cut sides.jpg
V. Finish the sleeves like you did the neckline, and pin the sides together, sewing the side seam.
 photo 12 Pin side.jpg
VI. The last thing is to fold the hem and sew it in place with a straight stitch.
 photo 13 Done.jpg
.. In the image above you see that I also added a string horizontally to the back V, to make sure the ready top doesn't fall off the shoulders.
 photo ready6.jpg  photo ready2.jpg  photo ready5.jpg



I would love to hear what you think and learn about your DIY adventures! If you use one of my tutorials, tag me on social @contour_affair, I'd love to see!


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