Tutorial: Knit Twirl Skirt

Knit skirts are so super comfortable ... and EASY! Don't let the fact that it's knit and not cotton fool you! I made this one for my little girl, but I think I will totally make one for me too!

• knit fabric {1 yd was fine for my girl who wears a size 6}
• scissors
• cutting mat, ruler, rotary cutter
• sewing machine
• pins
• iron, ironing board

Here's how:
Take measurements. The waist measurement for my little one is 21". The length I wanted the skirt was about 13" {from her waist}. So, I cut my pieces:
2 pieces - 36"x12" for the skirt {front and back} - generally you can 1.5 times your waist measurement so that if your waist is 20" you would have a total of 30" length in fabric plus 1" for seam allowance. Then cut that piece in half {15.5"} for a front and a back side. I left mine quite a bit larger because I wanted it to be really gathered and have a lot of twirl to it!

and 4 pieces 3"x11" {for the waistband}

Take two of the waist band pieces. You are going to sew them together along the small sides {the 3" sides}. Repeat this step for the other two waistband pieces.

When you are done you should have two pieces like this.

Then, take one of those waistband pieces and turn it inside out {so the that raw stitched edges are inside}. Then stick that piece inside the other waistband piece. You are essentially putting right sides together!

Line up the top edges and pin all the way around!

Then sew all the way around where you pinned... back stitch at the end! When you are done, turn it right side out and you will have a finished seam on the top! This will be the top of your skirt! Use your iron and gently press out that seam so it lays flat.

Then take your two skirt pieces and sew the side seams. You can pin, or not {I don't usually use pins unless I have to!}

Then you need to gather the top of your skirt. So, sew a very large stitch {I use a 5} on each of your skirt pieces leaving lots of string on both ends for gathering. Since you have already sewn the side seams, start your gathering seam as close to your side seam as you can without sewing over your side seam! {did you get that!?!}

Then pull your thread to gather both sides of your skirt.

Pin your side seams of your skirt to the side seams of your wait band {make sure that the top of your waist band is now pointed at the bottom of your skirt! {Don't pin to the finished side of your waistband!} Once you have your side seams matched up, adjust the gathering and pin it in place.

Once you have your gathering where you want it, go ahead and sew it in place. I tend to leave a wider seam allowance here - about 1/2" so that I make sure my gathering stitch won't be seen on the finished side. Back stitch at the beginning and the end for durability! I used a 2.0 stitch length. Once you have sewn all the way around, you can go back and trim down the excess fabric so your waist isn't so bulky!

Turn your skirt right side out and you should have something like this!

Lastly, you will need to hem the bottom. Try the skirt on your model and check for length. Leave yourself about 1/2" extra for the hem. Trim if necessary!

Then take your skirt to your iron and press a 1/2" hem all the way around the bottom.

Pin your hem to hold it in place while sewing.

Then go ahead and sew it. I always start my hem on a side seam. This way you avoid a back stitch in the middle of your skirt somewhere.

Your finished hem should look something like this. You can embellish your skirt with some embroidery, some fabric rosettes, or leave it as is!

I had a hard time getting my model to take a picture to really let you see the skirt, but this pose shows off how full it is with all those gather! Plus, the larger waistband is more comfortable {especially on adults!}. Happy sewing!!


  1. Such a great tutorial! Thanks so much!

  2. Very nice! Your model is doing a great job of showing off the versatility of the skirt ;)


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