$78 For a Skirt?

I’m always amazed at how much women might be paying for simple skirts. On the other hand, when I get hip-wear catalogs in the mail, along with you I’m drooling over the cool, modern, feminine prints. Here are some examples of this season’s bold skirts from Boden.com, at $78 and $98.

Yours for $78
Yours for $98

There are really two questions here: 1. Where to find great fabric for skirts? and 2. Can you make a skirt that fits and flatters you?

Amy Butler cottons are often used for bags or quilts, but they’re also substantial enough to minimize wrinkling. She also has bold graphic prints like what you see in expensive catalogs. Or, shop your local quilting store. To test whether the fabric is substantial, grasp some with your hands, release it and assess the wrinkling potential. (Also remember that many fabrics are treated with sizing, a kind of stiffener, so your fabric might be slightly more soft after prewashing.)

As for fit, these skirts have zippers, but beginning sewers can start with an elastic waist. Use a 1″ wide or wider elastic to create a smooth effect over your waist. Cut fabric only a few inches larger than your waist size, and you’ll get a smooth yoga-waist look. Cotton skirts require only a yard and a half of 55″ wide fabric (common among Amy Butler and home decorator cottons) or a couple of yards of 45″ wide fabric for the largest waist. So at no more than $15.95 per yard you can see how inexpensively you can whip up a skirt. Want to create your own skirt pattern that fits and flatters? I love and use Sew What! Skirts, a spiral-bound book that shows you how.

Amy Butler Fabric locator

Sew What! Skirts preview on Amazon.com — book is only about $12

“Swishy” cotton skirt on Boden.com for $78 original price

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