Wednesday, July 16, 2014

The Best Shirt to Skirt DIY (with a real waistband)

Today I'm sharing my ultimate shirt to skirt tutorial with a real sewn waistband.  Most tutorials I see for these skirts have an elastic band, so I wanted to kick it up a notch.  I'm also using two shirts instead of one for some added fullness.  Depending on the size of the shirt, you can use either one or two shirts.  It's up to you.  The key is to use as much of the shirt fabric as you possibly can without wasting a scrap.  

Watch the video tutorial here!
Two men's shirts
Sewing machine 
Matching thread
1/4 yard iron on interfacing
E-6000 Stitch Less Iron On Glue
Straight pins
 Cut the front of the shirt along the side seams, across the front right under the collar band and down the side seam again
Cut out the back of the shirt removing the stitched side seams, across the upper back and down the side again
Do this to both shirts
Cut off the tail and up the center back of both shirt backs
Cut a straight line from the hem of the shirt to the shoulder 
 Pin the two back pieces from one shirt to the sides of the front of the other shirt and stitch together using 1/2" seam allowance
*This is the skirt front
Cut off the button and buttonhole plackets on the other shirt, pin and stitch together to create one piece
Pin the back pieces from the other shirt to the sides of this piece and stitch together using 1/2" seam allowance
*This is the back of the skirt
Stitch the front and back together to create the skirt
Press all seams together and zigzag over each one to finish the raw edges
Gather the waist of the skirt to your waist size
Cut the sleeves apart at the seams, remove the cuff and iron flat 
Measure a 3" wide strip down the center of each sleeve (this will be your waistband)
Stitch the two 3" wide strips together to create a long 3" strip
Measure your waist, add 1" and cut the long fabric strip to that size
(if your waist is 32", then cut the strip 33")
Cut an identical piece of iron on interfacing and iron it to the strip
 Finish one edge of the waistband with a zigzag stitch
Pin the raw edge of the waistband to the gathered waist of the skirt (right sides together) leaving a 1/2" overlap on both sides
Stitch the waist band to the skirt using 1/2" seam allowance
Fold the waistband over (right sides together) and stitch the 1/2" overlap on each end of the skirt
Cut the corner at an angle and flip right side out
Press the waistband into place
You will now be hiding the gathering of the skirt inside the waist band
Stitch over the waistband, trapping the gathering inside and catching the finished edge of the waistband on the inside of the skirt
Add a buttonhole above the line of buttonholes in the center front
Stitch on a button
Hem the skirt by turning the hem 1/4" and then 1/4" again
*This is called a turn and turn hem
If you don't want to hem, you can always use E-6000 Stitch Less Iron on glue and iron your hem in place


  1. I agree with your observation about elastic waists. The extra effort to sew a waistband is great. You were extra creative to make a look from two shirts!

  2. I might be able to make this!