Tutorial Thursdays! Repurposing my Pinup Girl Clothing Skirt – Part 2 Sewing the Skirt

Hi all,

Welcome back to Tutorial Thursdays, sorry I didn’t post one last week, everything got a bit confused and hectic as I was prepping for the Atomic Market, which was my last post.

This week I will explain how to assemble and sew the skirt we cut out in the last Tutorial Thursday.

What you will need for part 2:

  • Cut out fabric (of course)
  • A sewing machine
  • A ” zip to match your fabric
  • Overlocker or pinking shears to finish hem edges.

Sewing Time!

2,1 overlock

First off finish your side seam edges, I’m using an overlocker but it’s perfectly okay to just go around the edges with pinking shears. If you don’t have either it’s not the end of the world, but your fabric will fray over time. Pinking shears are also a great way of getting a true vintage style finish on your garment.

2,2 waistband

I’ve salvaged half of the waistband from the original skirt to use for mine, folded over this makes the perfect waistband width. If you need to make a waistband then cut a piece of fabric the length of your waist (+ seam allowance) X 4”. I like to use 4” (included seam allowance) as it gives a 1 1/2” finished waistband which is a nice thin-medium width, but feel free to adjust.

2,3 waistband width

The half waistband is 4” wide and as you can see already has a nice crease where my seam allowance is.

2,4 zip placement

Next I measure the depth at which the zip will sit. I’m using a 10” zip and I know that my finished waistband length is 1 1/2 inches. This means that if I measure 9” down from the top of my skirt, that will include a 1/2” seam allowance giving me a length of 8 1/2”. Make a chalk mark here. This all adds up to 10”! The zip may seem a little long but the full hip measurement sits around 9” below the waist, so you need to be able to wriggle it past that point.

2,5 sew to zip

I pinned the chalk mark I made and then sewed from this point to the bottom of the skirt. Remember to back tack at both ends of your rows of stitching. After this you can go ahead and sew your other side seam from the top of the skirt to the bottom.

2,6 sewn waistband

Next sew the waistband to the top of the skirt. As you can see one edge of my waistband is overlocked which is how it came originally. At this point you should overlock or use pinking shears along the far side of the waistband.

2,7 inside where zip

This is how the inside should look. When we sew the zip in we want the waistband seam to be flipped upwards, towards the top of the waistband.

2,8 inserted zip

I’m not going to show you how to insert the zip as it’s up to you how you want to do it. I used the lapped zip method. It’s easy to find zip tutorials on google, and I think it’s better to find a dedicated post about zip insertion. Also remember the zip should start 1 1/2” above the seam line, as the waistband will fold over.

2,9 inner waistband

Next fold the waistband over until it sits 1/2” under the waistband seam, or until the top of the zip is against the fold.

2,10 topstitching

Next you need to edge-stitch along the entire waistband. This means a very narrow row of stitching. You need to catch the back of the waistband with it, so make sure you keep the waistband folded evenly around the skirt, or pin it before sewing.

As you can see my stitching is pretty appalling, I was in a rush and did it in the last few minutes before going home from work. And did you notice the pattern matching made the pinup lady into a princess/witch?

2,11 rolled hem

Finally hem your skirt! I used a 1/2” rolled hem, which means turning the fabric up, and then once again, so the raw edge is hidden. Feel free to hem it however you like, but a rolled hem provides a nice finish.

And there you have it! The second part of my 4 part skirt repurposing series. Since I didn’t post last week I will just plow through with the rest of them over the next couple of weeks. But since it was requested I will be doing a post on how I do my eyeliner afterward.


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