Wednesday, August 03, 2011

How to: Ridiculously Easy Girls' Jean Skirt

Remember how I made the jean skirt last week and told you we'd be doing something cool with the legs of the jeans we sliced up?  We're actually making two somethings out of those legs and today I'm sharing with you the first something.

This is a really simple jean skirt for a little girl.  The whole project, including taking half-assed pictures and putting up the how-to on the blog took me under an hour. You could work this to fit any preschool/kindergarten aged girl- approximately sizes 2-6.  You'll just need either the child, a piece of their elastic-waisted clothing or their waist measurement.

You'll also need on hand one very silly little girl.

Sewing a simple seam
Sewing an enclosed seam (optional-see here for tutorial)
Dressing a child

The legs of an old pair of jeans (On hand=$0; Thrift store find= $0-5)
Approx 30"x7" of any fabric you like (On hand=$0; Fabric store remnant=$2-10, depending on the fabric)
Approx 1yd of 1" elastic (On hand=$0, $1-2 to purchase)

Total Cost= $0-$17
You are highly unlikely to spend more than $2 on this project, if anything.  But even if you go all out with fancy supplies, you're going to spend under $20.

1. Cut off the bottoms of the jean legs so from the top of the hem to the cut is about an inch shorter than you want the final skirt.  For my 5 year old daughter, my piece was cut off just below the knee of the jeans.  Save that last bit- the tops of the legs- because we'll use that next week, leaving very little waste from this old pair of jeans.
2. Turn each of the legs inside out and cut off the inseam (the part that used to be on the inside of your leg when they were still jeans) seam of each leg, as well as the hem.  This will leave you with a rectangle of fabric with a seam in the middle. Measure the width of one piece of this fabric.  Cut a piece of your contrast fabric so that it is 7" high and twice as long as one of your jean pieces. This will be your bottom band. (Example- my jean pieces were each 15" wide, so I cut the contrast band 7"x30".)
3. Put the two leg pieces right sides (outsides) together and seam up the sides so you have a big tube.
4. Press down the top edge of the skirt 1/4".  Fold it over just over and inch and press and pin down.  Sew close to the lower pressed edge to form a casing- make sure you leave about 1" of the edge unsewn so there is a hole to put the elastic through.
5. Putting a safety pin through one end of the elastic so you can get a good grip on it in the casing, feed the elastic through the casing, being careful not to twist it.  You may want to pin down the free end when you're partway through so that it doesn't disappear on you.

6. Sew the ends of the elastic together (again being careful to make sure it's not twisted) and let the elastic pull into the casing entirely.  Sew the hole shut. This is starting to look like a skirt!
7. Fold your bottom band piece in half along the length, with the right sides together and sew the long side to make a long tube.  Turn inside right.
8. Sew the short ends of the piece together.  I used an enclosed seam like the one we used last week because if any seam will show while the skirt is being worn, this one will.
9. With right sides together, pin the two pieces together so that the raw edge of the jeans is even with the seamed long edge of the bottom band.  You may need to stretch the jeans slightly to make it even (as nearly all women's jeans have at least some stretch to them, this is easy to do).  Sew the two pieces together.
10. Rejoice for you are finished!

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