How to sew a skirt – a step by step sew-along

How to Sew A Skirt. Beginners tutorial series covers fabric, patterns, cutting out, darts, zipper, lining, hems and more. You can totally learn to sew from this set of tutorials - from So Sew Easy.

Welcome to the So Sew Easy How to Sew A Skirt Sew-along series.  This new series will show you everything you need to know about how to draft and sew your own custom fit fully lined skirt.  From pattern making, to darts, to lining and hems, you can have a beautifully made skirt designed to fit you perfectly.

We will be making these three skirts.  In fact they are all exactly the same skirt made from the same pattern and in the same way.  And I'll show you exactly how to do it.


How to Sew A Skirt. Beginners tutorial series covers fabric, patterns, cutting out, darts, zipper, lining, hems and more.  You can totally learn to sew from this set of tutorials - from So Sew Easy.


Over the course of the next few weeks, I'll be showing you step by step how to make your own skirt from scratch. The topics we will cover are:

  1. Overview, tools and equipment and choosing your fabric
  2. Drafting your custom fit pattern, and all about ease and seam allowances
  3. Cutting your fabric and pattern matching
  4. Marking darts perfectly
  5. Sewing darts perfectly
  6. Looking at the different zipper feet
  7. Inserting an invisible zipper
  8. First steps for adding a skirt lining
  9. Lining a skirt by machine
  10. Hemming the skirt
  11. Finishing and round up
  12. Your skirts on show !

As each one of these is published, the text above will become a hyperlink to the page you need to make it easy to follow along.  You can Pin, Share or Bookmark this page to have easy access to all the lessons.  I'd love it if you did.

Along the way, I'll try to answer all of your questions and direct you to some of the best tutorials and materials.

I'm excited about the series.  It will be a lot of work to put this together but I've enjoyed learning these skills and getting good results, and I know you will too.  And I can't wait to see your end results!

If you want to know when the each post in the series is published, do sign up for the newsletter to get it right into your inbox.

I'll be back soon with Episode 1 –  Overview, tools and equipment, and choosing your fabric.


How to Sew A Skirt. Beginners tutorial series covers fabric, patterns, cutting out, darts, zipper, lining, hems and more.  You can totally learn to sew from this set of tutorials - from So Sew Easy.

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I'm really looking forward to seeing your skirt and featuring it on Sew So Easy!

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33 Responses to How to sew a skirt – a step by step sew-along

  1. Green says:

    Really you are smart and beautiful. Every dress was very nice when you wear. Your instruction is easily can understand. Since you explain step by step, anyone can understand easily. You are great!!!

  2. Patricia Giricz says:

    I like the idea of making a custom fitted pattern, but how can I accomodate my pattern sloper for sewing with Knit fabrics?

    • Mayra at So Sew Easy says:

      That is an entire different sloper. In fact you would need three different sloper according to the stretch of the fabric.

  3. kathleen says:

    I did this skirt (sans liner) on Saturday! Second sewing effort with a pattern–and the first time I made my own pattern. I misread a line or two and got stuck, but going more slowly from the start I figured it our and corrected my confusion. I am quite pleased with the result. Like you, my waist to hip ratio wouldn’t qualify as ‘hourglass’ so it was great to be able to make a skirt that does balloon at the hips or choke at the waist. The fabric I used for this maiden voyage is actually a odd-but-pretty blue upholstery fabric. I think it will look sufficiently business-y with a navy blazer and crisp white shirt.

  4. noeleen says:

    Great stuff here can u tell me how to shorten a skirt pattern for stretch Im not meant to cut it but to trace off & I have done this but its too long i need to shorten it by 7 inches cm don’t work for me either! thanks for all your help Noeleen

    • It depends on the design of the skirt. If it is just a straight skirt then you can lengthen or shorted in right across the bottom. If it is another shape, such as an a-line, you may want to shorten it at the hip line and bring up the bottom hemline that way, redrawing the side seams to the new shape. It is a circle skirt, you would draw a smaller circle. So really, it depends on the shape. 7 inches is an awful lot to take off a skirt, it might change the shape quite a lot.

  5. Anna Cardenas says:

    So Glad I found This, I have a 9 year old that got a sewing machine for Christmas and is going through a skirt faze . She is wanting to try to make a few . Thank you, Thank you . This is perfect.

  6. Lenise says:

    Hi! I have never sewn before and I want to start learning to sew my own skirts. Do I need to know sewing basics before I start going over the links here or will this help me to jump right in?

    • Deby Coles says:

      You’ll certainly need to know some basic sewing skills first, like how to use a sewing machine, how to sew a neat straight line, stop and start your stitching etc. But I do try to show everything else in a step by step. There is nothing to lose in giving this a try. It’s a great way to learn as you go along, and you’ll be making up your first skirt as a test in a cheap fabric remnant, muslin or old sheet. If you want to start sewing clothes, its a good place to start all will give you lots of knowledge along the way. Good luck with it.

    • Helen says:

      I would be of benefit to you to feel comfortable with your machine first.
      Try using some of the functions, ie straight stitch, reverse and mostly knowing what the functions mean on your machine.

  7. Sandibeach says:

    I just made this skirt for my daughter. I guess I thought it had a waistband as the worksheet mentions it. I also thought it confusing to change measurement units. Inches-cm-inches. Loved the dart idea. Got confused putting in the lining but it came out great in the end. I really appreciate all the work putting this website together. Hope everyone else does too!

  8. Cody Doll says:

    If only I could sew then I would so love this. I am still trying to figure the basics. I was thinking of signing up with a sewing class at Joannas but I don’t have the money and I don’t learn well from pictures/text.

    • Deby Coles says:

      How do you do with video tutorials? I learned to sew from watching the Craftsy tutorials. They do many free small classes and well as others that you have to pay for. They do have a couple of classes on how to sew skirts that are aimed at beginners. Find out more at Craftsy (this is my personal landing page).

    • bklynwriter says:

      Trust Deby’s instructions! I had my doubts but I’m now almost finished with 1st (of many) skirts!

      • Deby Coles says:

        That’s great – pleased to hear that you have found it useful. During the series itself, it was pretty quiet around here, but it seems quite a few people are now working on their skirts.

  9. bklynwriter says:

    I have a question….how does one make allowances for the infamous ‘belly pooch’?

    • Deby Coles says:

      If you have a prominent tummy, then you wouldn’t want to emphasise it by being too tight there and coming in too sharply underneath. You would want to try to make the fabric skim and hang flatly. If your body shape is not ‘model-perfect’ then I suggest starting off with the pattern as usual, making up the skirt in a cheap fabric such as an old sheet and trying it on inside out. Then you can see where you might need to make any alterations – probably to the darts, and pinch out or add fabric where your particular body needs it. It will be easier to make these changes in the fabric on the body than try to do so in the flat of the paper pattern. Once you have the fabric hanging correctly, then tranfer any changes back to the pattern pieces for next time.

  10. Barbra McFarland says:

    I absolutely LOVE the Excel spreadsheet you created for measurements. I plan on making a bodice and pants sloper….and was wondering if you could do a tutorial on how to accomplish this. If not, can you please email me privately.

    • Deby Coles says:

      Yikes Barbra, maybe one day. But I think both of those are a bit too advanced for me yet. The pants certainly. I could perhaps give it a go with the bodice sloper one day, I am intending to take a Craftsy class about fitting that I hope to learn a lot more from about making a bodice block, and once I know how to do it, you can be sure that I’ll share. AND I’ll do another spreadsheet too. If there is anything I can help you with, you can drop me a line using the email link at the top of the banner.

  11. Renee says:

    I am having trouble opening the patterns I bought. Is there another way to open them? I’ve bought tow of your patterns and can not open them. Thank you

  12. Karen Schulz says:

    visiting from Sew Can Do. These look great. Will be watching the updates

  13. Tanya @ Greetings From the Asylum says:

    I love your fabric choices! I am in the slimming down process right now, but when I’m done, I’m going to be making myself some skirts! Thanks for sharing. I am visiting from Think Pink Sunday!

  14. The skirt looks great, and so many options to switch it up!

  15. MammaNene (@mamma_nene) says:

    Well… how can I say no ta a sew-along? Let’s sew a skirt… I’ll do my best!!!
    Thank you Deby 🙂

  16. Ana Sullivan says:

    This “seams” like a great series. I’m not great at drafting my own clothing patterns. I look forward to learning something new.

  17. Karen says:

    Thank you so much for this offering! I look forward to working along with you!

  18. OMG! IF I looked as good as you do in a skirt, I would be making more than my closet could hold!!! I AM going to TRY to follow along. I am one of “those” sewists that are FAR more comfy sewing for babies & children than for myself due to the MANY curves I have vs. “them”! Thanks for this opportunity to “evolve”!

    • Deby Coles says:

      Thanks for the kind comment Chelle – I can assure you I didn’t look good until I made a skirt that actually fit me. My strange body shape meant I never had a straight skirt to fit before. So rest assured – you can do it!

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