Made Up Initiative: Handkerchief (Sorta) Hem Skirt

Here’s my completed project for the Made Up Initiative: a handkerchief-hem skirt! It’s made of supercomfy black cotton gauze with two rows of elastic for the waistband. I was originally planning to make just a big square, but that ended up limp and uninteresting. So I rounded it off to a big circle skirt. Then, uh, that was still kinda limp and uninteresting! So I added six pick-ups and topped them with little purple ribbon bows. (That is, I pinched up some fabric from lower down on the skirt and tacked it to higher spots. These are sewn down, which makes me a little nervous about whether they might get ripped out if I accidentally step on the hem . . . we shall see, I suppose!)

IMG_3087This gave me more of the fullness I wanted, but now I know to go the tiers/ruffles route when sewing gauze. Maybe I will layer it over a ruffled underskirt.

And check out the cute hem!

IMG_3028This is a three-thread narrow overlock stitch (still learning new things to do with my serger).

Overall, the skirt is light and airy (despite being pitch black and therefore difficult to photograph), very comfortable on a hot day. Crinkle gauze is kind of a pain to work with since you can’t press it flat and therefore it’s impossible to get it very precise (or so I’ve found, at any rate). The key, I suppose, is making something like this–loose fitting with a deliberately uneven hem.

IMG_3118I kept trying and failing to get some good action shots, since it’s nice and flowy! I’m planning to wear this to a Ren fair in November, so will try to get some better photos then.

The Made Up Initiative


A few days ago, Did You Make That launched a charity challenge: The Made Up Initiative. Participants make a donation to the UK National Literacy Trust and pledge to create something (it need not be sewn!) by September 10. Anybody who completes the challenge is entered to win a bunch of sewing goodies! (And, of course, they’re supporting literacy in the UK . . . but, c’mon, PRIZES. 😛 )

Since I love both reading and sewing, I figured signing on was a no brainer. I’m pledging to make a handkerchief hem skirt (or dress–depends on how it goes!) since it’s something on my to-do list and I have all the materials for it already. (I’m trying not to spend any more money on sewing stuff until September, so fall capsule wardrobe stuff is on hold for the moment.) (Though I have completed one skirt for it! And one other skirt . . . that was not on any to-do list . . . oh well.)