Condo Blues: How to Make a T-Shirt Skirt

Friday, May 13, 2011

How to Make a T-Shirt Skirt

Last year’s summer wardrobe is snug. I don’t want to spend a bunch of money on clothes because I’m trying  to lose the 30 pounds I gained (all on fresh, whole foods even!) when my doctor switched me to a different medication. (It’s nothing serious, it just doesn’t relate to this blog.)  I kvetched enough about the meds compelling me to eat THREE sandwiches at lunch every day that she switched me back to my old prescription.
In the meantime, I need some new clothes.

I found plain t-shirts on sale but no shorts or skirts.

No problem! I’ll sew a skirt from a t-shirt or four.

Turn a T-shirt into a Drawstring Skirt

You will need:

1 T-shirt in as large of a size as possible. I normally wear a medium size t-shirt and chose an extra t shirt for this project.
Tailor’s chalk
Elastic, cord, or ribbon
Safety pin
Sewing machine
Ironing Board

Make it:

1. The bottom of the t-shirt will be the hem of your skirt. Measure from the bottom of the t-shirt to the neck of the shirt and add one inch to that measurement for the waistband. Mark this measurement with the ruler and tailor’s chalk.

I refuse to move until Lisa promises to sew a super secret dog treat pocket in her skirt.

2. Cut across the shirt at your measurement. I want my finished skirt to be 21 inches long. I cut the t-shirt at 22 inches from the hem of the shirt.

I'm keeping my eye on you! 
Your favorite shoes look soft and chewy...

3. If needed: Cut the arms off the t-shirt.

4. If needed: Turn the t-shirt inside out. Pin the front of the sleeve to the back of the sleeve and sew it closed.


5. Make the super secret dog treat packet to make Blitzkrieg happy and my favorite shoes safe. Cut the sleeve into a square. Pin right sides together along three sides of the pocket.

You don't need pinking shears to cut jersey. 
They were the first pair I grabbed so that's what I used.

6. Sew  the bottom of the  the pocket closed.

7. Turn the pocker it right side out and press it with the iron so it looks tidy.

 The knives on the serger evened out my wonky scissor cut.

8. Make the waistband. Fold the waistband over ¼ inch and press it with the iron. Fold the waistband over 1 more inch and pin.

9. Sew the waistband, remove the pins, and press the waistband with the iron because that's how Mom taught me. Make sure you leave a small gap to run your elastic/cord/ribbon.

10. Pin the pocket to the waistband of the skirt. Sew it into place.

11. Pin the safety pin to the end of the elastic/cord/ribbon. Use the safety pin to thread it through the waistband. If you are using elastic, pin and then sew  both ends of the elastic together.

12. Sew the gap in the waistband closed.

Tip: I tack the elastic/drawstring to the back of the waistband with a few hand stitches to keep the drawstring from pulling out of the waistband in the wash. It's also a quick reminder which side is the back of the skirt!

13. Wear it and work that skirt!

Hit a t-shirt sale and make one in every color!

Update May 16, 2010: I took my sewing machine in for repair and it's fixable! I broke the bobbin plate - a $10.00 part and an easy fix. My repair guy gave me a free temporary fix until the part comes in later this week. If you are in Columbus and need a sewing/serger machine repair person I know a guy and can hook you up! He's amazing, super nice, and can fix just about any machine from any year. Mine is my Mom's old 1972 Kenmore.

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