Finished: Sweatpants in Skirt Form – A Grey Maxi Skirt
Sometimes projects work out perfectly the first time. And sometimes they don’t.
This skirt project somehow manages to fall into both these categories at the same time.
I originally bought this fabric way back in the fall, with the intention of turning it into a loose, lightweight, hoodie/cardigan of some sort. My idea was to start with a basic kimono, and then add a hood, plus gathers/tucks/pockets/whatever to pull it out of the realm of dull grey sack, and into the realm of cool versatile cardigan.
That plan very much didn’t work out. I cut and sewed the kimono, and started playing, but nothing worked. It refused to look like anything but a dull grey sack. It was at an advanced level of “just not working out” and I didn’t even bother taking photos.
So I did what any experienced crafter would do, and shoved the project in a drawer for a couple months.
Then when I was thinking about what to make this summer, I thought back to this fabric, thinking it would make a great maxi skirt.
Even though the fabric is a wool jersey, it’s lightweight enough and breathable enough, that it doesn’t feel too hot. It’s that perfect middle ground of warm enough to be able to wear into fall, and airy enough to wear though the spring & summer (though probably not when the temperature works it’s way into the 90s with 100% humidity.)
This skirt is a basically sweatpants in skirt form.
2 yards of a wool/spandex blend medium weight grey jersey
Since I had already cut & sewn the kimono, and had to take it apart to make the skirt (I just cut off the seams, not even bothering with a seam ripper.) I pieced the fronts & back together to create enough width for a skirt.
After that I did a super basic maxi skirt, with a yoga style waistband.
Just like with my black maxi skirt, I made the skirt body slightly wider than the waistband, and did small evenly spaced pleats to make walking a little easier.
I then took the strip that was going to become the neckband/hood/pockets, and fashioned a twisted yoga pant style waistband.
And the sleeves got pieced together to become a sort of underskirt/lining. This part wasn’t strictly necessary, but I did it to a) help with panty lines, b) to smooth out the fairly drastic difference in thickness between the waistband and the skirt, and c) to cover the exposed seams where the waistband attached to the skirt.
The seams are all sewn with a straightforward zig zag, and all the edges are raw, mostly because I like the raw edges, and partly because I was in a hurry.
To form the twist in the waistband, I folded the waistband inwards on the right hip and sewed about 5 inches of it in place. Then I take the left hip, where the waistband is not permanently folded, and fold it towards the outside of the skirt.
I love the yoga style waistband, and also this fabric for this style skirt – since it is a wool/spandex blend, it’s very stretchy, and springs back into shape really easily. This means that I can take long steps, without needing to add a slit or tie the hem up.
What I’d do differently:
Maybe next time making the underskirt/lining out of a different fabric – this certainly isn’t bad enough for me to change now, but the two pieces do have a tendency to cling together.
I do wish that I had spent a little more time evenly distributing & more carefully placing the pleats around the waistband. I just eyeballed it, and they all came out pretty even except for two in the back, which came out a little funky.
Since I finished it, I’ve been wearing this skirt a possibly embarrassing amount.
And the best thing was that it was one of those projects I started in the morning, and wore out to meet a friend that afternoon (Day 318).