Lolita Skirt Design–Part Three


Aka kolmanda osa but I figured that no one else here would get estonian and it isn’t quite as ubiquitous as Part Troi but then I suppose if we get technical that isn’t really correct for French either.


What this post is about is the putting together process for the skirt that you’ve been watching me design. This, for me, is both the easiest and the longest part of the whole process. Maybe it’s because I don’t count all the time I spend not actively trying to draw a design down.

This is also where I get to press the most stuff, and I just adore pressing. 🙂 If you need something pressed and live nearby hit me up and I’ll do it for free or a free lunch or something. You know.

Anyway. When we last left I had shown you (roughly) how to figure out what parts are going to need how much fabric. The really beginning designer friendly thing about lolita is how so much of it is just rectangles and putting those rectangles together. It’s very hard to feel daunted by a skirt–it’s the details that always worry me now.

So, here’s the order I went in–first, I pressed everything. Yes. I had left that fabric laying around for a few weeks and it was rumply. Don’t look at me like that.

No, I did not press the chiffon. It is synthetic chiffon and I didn’t want to break my new ironing board in with melted plastic on it.

Instead, I went ahead and hemmed what would be the lower edge for each of the tiers–I knew the sides and top would be sewn down onto the base panel.

If you have it, make liberal use of fray check or don’t cut your chiffon till literally the last moment. It frays. I went with a baby doll style hem on these.

Which works well enough for my purposes.

With that done, I set the chiffon aside for a few, switched my needle back to a size 11 instead of a size 9.

The next big thing for me was hemming my skirt ahead of time. I prefer to hem each piece seperately if I’m not doing lace or ruffle hems. This is primarily because I’ve yet to do a blindstitch hem by machine <em>or</em> hand that I like and I’m terrible at this whole sewing thing in general. So I marked about an inch up and then did a .25″ baby doll hem on the ‘bottom’ of each of my skirt panels.

(I know you can’t see it well in that photo, but I swear there’s a silver marked line there to demonstrate)

Next step, press and then sew.

I don’t know where I got that stick thinger but it’s the best thing I’ve done for my hands in a while.

Now, you might think you should attach the chiffon now. You really shouldn’t. This is the part where you make the pintucks that are at the bottom of the skirt. This makes it so all your pieces will line up better and everyone is the same length. I guess you could just cut the chiffon panels smaller or some such, but that would be planning and I have no brook with that. (haha get it if you know my real name that should make you laugh. maybe?)

Mark all of your pin tucks on all of your fabric ahead of time. I went with three spaced .5″ apart, but if I did it again I’d either add another 2 pintucks (for a total of 5) or space them 1″ apart. Either way, mark em.

(look you can see my hem)

Mark on the RIGHT SIDE of your fabric. You have no idea how many places I had to look to confirm that. My sewing books all used fabric that is the same on both sides in the photos and didn’t specify. How annoying, right?

Pintucks marked, start doing em. There’s gonna be a lot of this:

Maybe this is the reason why I adore them so much?

NOW that that’s done, put the chiffon on the two panels.

Then trim your edges up a bit if you want:

I clearly did. Then attach–I use french seams for this project.

Does that look nice? Make sure you attach everyone in the right order. You do not want to get to this point and realize you attached a short panel on each side of a chiffon panel. The center panel needs to go in the <em>center</em>. I actually didn’t screw this up.

Next step: finish making the skirt? With all the pieces attached, and seams pressed, have your waistband pieces all lined up and ready:

I swear I had some 3/8″ elastic for the half-elastic waistband. Two pieces, both 12″ long, just like my design plans said. I ended up going with a 3″ wide strip for the waistband, and I’m glad I did. I like wiggle room when I make waistbands.

If you missed it, you can find the half-elastic waistband tutorial I did here on egl. Then just finish pressing, and voila!



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