Friday, January 9, 2009

Poodle Skirt

A sewing client asked me to make a poodle skirt for her granddaughter for a Christmas present. After some brief research on the internet, I decided I could make it without a pattern. There could be nothing simpler. It is a full circle skirt and because she was unsure of her granddaughter's exact waist measurement, I put elastic in the waist so it could be easily adjusted if it ended up too big.

All you need for a skirt like this is two yards of 72" wide felt, a poodle applique, some ribbon and elastic for the waist.

First take your fabric and fold it into fourths. (In the picture above I have drawn the waist arc and am now measuring the hem arc.) Starting at the center point, draw an arc where you want to cut out the waist. For an approximately 30" waist, I cut out a 4" arc. From this line, measure how long you want the skirt and add an inch and a half to turn over for the waistband. I only added an inch and used 3/4" wide elastic. This leaves a very tight opening to get the elastic through, so if I were doing it again, I'd add the half inch and give myself some breathing room. The felt won't fray, so you don't need to worry about a hem allowance. This skirt was to be 27", so I measured my second arc at 28". In the next picture you can see both arcs drawn. It is now ready to cut out.

I then cut along both arcs and then unfolded the skirt:

I then folded over my waistband to the inside and stitched it shut using my blind hemming foot. I have found I use this foot a lot for edgestitching as I can but the fabric up against it and be a lot more consistent. I left an opening to insert the elastic. When I removed it from the machine, I inserted the elastic, stitched the ends together and closed the opening.

At this point you have a skirt and all that is left is the embellishment. I put the skirt on my dress form, figured out where I wanted the poodle and then took a spool of 1/8" wide ribbon and played with it until I had a leash I liked. I pinned it and then took the skirt off the dress form and sewed the ribbon down by hand, smoothing out the curves as I went along.

If I were to do this again, I think I would add a separate waistband piece. It would just give a more finished look. I think it turned out well though and my client was very pleased.


Gwen said...

How cute! And how cool that you could make it without a pattern! I still pretty much stick to patterns, with the exceptions being two special purpose bags that I couldn't find patterns for...

Alviana said...

brilliant! i love the applique