Introduction: Removable Tulle Skirt Overlay - Pencil Skirt Pattern Hack

Supplies for this project:

  • 1/2" double fold bias tape (matching the color of your tulle)
  • Pencil skirt pattern (see Step 1)
  • Open ended zipper that is longer than the finished waistband measurement of your pencil skirt
  • 5-6 yards of Tulle
  • Fabric for the pencil skirt (see your pattern for yardage requirements)
  • Coordinating thread
  • Invisible zipper
  • Any other notions listed in your pencil skirt pattern

Step 1: Find a Pencil Skirt Pattern

Your pencil skirt pattern must have a separate pattern piece for the waistband and an invisible side a zipper.

Step 2: Sew the Front and Back Together at the Seam Without the Invisible Zipper

Do Not Attach the Waistband Yet!

Step 3: Pin the Zipper Along the Top of the Skirt



• Leave an inch gap or so from the top of the skirt...you want to have the zipper sandwiched between the waistband and the skirt without too much of the teeth exposed. You may have to pin (or baste stitch) so you can test if the zipper will still be functional.
• Also, leave the end of the zipper out of the side zipper seam allowance. You need to have enough room to zip up the zipper once the skirt is finished. The top part of the zipper can overlap the side of the skirt and be sewn into the side seam allowance. This will allow us to shorten the zipper and also create a zipper stop.


Step 4: Sew the Waistband to the Skirt

After the zipper is nicely pinned between the skirt body and the waistband, sew the waistband and the zipper to the skirt.

Step 5: Add the Invisible Side Zipper

After the skirt is assembled, add the invisible side zipper. It may be a little difficult to sew when you get to the zipper at the waistband, so sew slowly.

Step 6: Finish Skirt According to Pattern Instructions

Step 7: Create the Tulle Overlay

Next you want to measure how long you want your tulle overlay to be and add a 1/2" seam allowance. After your determine your length, take your finished waistband measurement and multiple that number by 1.5. This number will give you your width.

Step 8: Cut Your Tulle

Cut 4 pieces of tulle using your width and length measurements.

Step 9: Sew the 3 Tulle Layers Together and Gather

Use a gathering stitch to sew the 4 layers of tulle together. After they are sew, begin to gather the tulle so that it becomes the width of your finished waistband. Once you have the tulle gathered, you will encase the top using 1/2" wide double fold bias tape.

Step 10: Attach Your Gathered Tulle to the Zipper

Sew the encased gathered tulle to the other half of the zipper you inserted at the waistband. *Please note that you my not need the entire length of the zipper if you had to shorten the zipper added at the waistband.*

Step 11: Zip Your Tulle Overlay to Your Skirt

Enjoy your beautiful skirt!!! I love the versatility of this skirt because you can remove the tulle and the zipper waistband adds a cute edgy vibe to the plain pencil skirt. Also, you can buy more zippers and create more overlay pieces for your basic pencil skirt.

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