Two-Tone Circle Skirt




Introduction: Two-Tone Circle Skirt

This one of a kind circle skirt has that 50's style with a twist. I've applied a quilting technique to  "mesh"  the two opposing colors in the front and back.  Play with the blocking pattern, length, color, even garment choice (I've made a dress using the same technique) the possibilities are endless!

Step 1: Materials

2 yards each of your choice fabrics (4 yards total)- Any quilters cotton will work.
     **** This is specific to the pattern I am using. It calls for about 3 yards to make the skirt, however with the cutting and piecing        
            you'll need extra, calculate accordingly***
3 yards of lining fabric (optional, but recommended)
7-9 inch invisible zipper
Thread to match fabric

Sewing machine
Tape measure
Marking pen
Straight edge for marking/cutting ( I use a binding ruler)
Rotary cutter
Straight pins
Hand sewing needle (optional- depends on hem preference)

Step 2: Preparing

You will need a circle skirt pattern for this project. There are many to choose from, or you can pattern from an existing skirt. I will be using Simplicity 2233 (don't judge by the picture on the front, always look at the construction and line of the garment).

I think the hardest part of the this whole project is choosing the fabric. With so many great choices today, how is a girl to pick? Once you have your fabric it is essential to wash and dry them. This pre-shrinks the fabric, so you don't run into problems later.

I prefer to air dry mine, so I don't affect the luster/fuzz factor of the fabric.

I recommend lining your skirt for comfort  protection of the raw edges, and to add fullness to the skirt.

Step 3: "Making Your Fabric"

Step 1 - Stretch out your skirt fabrics (iron if necessary) with selvages on your right and left sides, right sides together. This will give us the lengthwise grain to line our pattern on.

Step 2- Cut the selvages off the right side of the skirt fabric. (no need to cut these on the lining fabric)

Step 3- Place you pattern on the fabric so the side that says "place on fold or center fold" is lined up on the right side. This will eventually be the middle of the skirt.

Step 4- On the left side, measure about 10 inches out from the furthest point of the patter and mark. This does not have to be  perfect.

Step 5- Cut off the extra fabric from the left side. You will use this later for the waistband.

Tip***Completely open, my new piece measures about two yards wide by two yards long****

Step 6- Using a 3/8" seam allowance, sew the fabrics together, right sides together, down the entire length on the right side.

Step 7- Press this seam open.

You should now have a two yard, two-tone piece of fabric.

Step 4: Roll Out the Strips

Step 1- Fold your fabric lengthwise along the seam you just created, right side in. Fold again lengthwise, so you have four equal pieces. You will be handling this four-ply piece as one through the end of this section.

Tip*** Mine measures approximately 18 inches by 2 yards***

Step 2- Decide how wide you would like your strips before this cutting step. I allow a 3/8 inch seam allowance per seam, which means I'll need to allow for a 3/4 inch seam allowance, because you'll be stitching on both sides of the strip. If you want a one inch strip I'll need to cut the strips 1 3/4 inches wide.

Step 3- You will start cutting at one of the narrow ends, and need to make sure the end you're starting on is perfectly level, cutting if necessary.

Step 4- You may choose to mark out your cutting lines (especially if using a scissor). I just line up my ruler on my binding ruler and get to it! Measure out the length of strip you chose (1 3/4"  for me), double check that it is level, and cut through all layers.

Step 5- You should end up with a 1 3/4 inch by two yard strip.

Step 6- Continue making these strips until your folded piece is used up.

Tip*** I ended up with 38 strips***

Now get ready for the fun part!

Step 5: Develop a Design

Step 1- Unroll your strips and begin arranging them. Any way you want! Same color on the same side, flip flipped, big cross overs, small ones. Be Creative! Lay them out on a large flat surface where you can leave them for a while. You don't want to move them once you figure out your pattern.

Tip*** I use the first strip as the CENTER. Any strip whose middle point is right or left of the CENTER cannot exceed ten inches to either side, or it won't fit the pattern.***

Step 2- Beginning at one end, start sewing the strips together. I like to work in sections; sewing 5-10 strips together, then joining the sections later. I also press as I go. You want your seams to go down toward the hemline.

Tip***No need to back-stitch; you'll be cutting your pattern from this new fabric.***

Tip***Once you have a piece that looks big enough for your pattern piece, size it up. Then you can work on two separate pieces, one for the front, one for the back.

Step 6: Cut Out Pieces

Step 1- Fold you fabric in half, using your CENTER as a guideline. Place your pattern, making sure it fits properly.

Step 2- Once you have double checked the fit, cut the pattern pieces.

Step 3- With the reserved fabric, cut the waistband.

Tip*** You should have two half circles. Handle them with care; you have sliced through the seam, so they come apart easily. Once you sew the sides together, they will be secure again.***

Tip*** If you are lining your skirt, cut a front and back of the lining fabric now.

Step 7: Sew Skirt

Follow the directions from your pattern to complete your skirt!

Fashion Contest

First Prize in the
Fashion Contest

Be the First to Share


    • Pocket-Sized Speed Challenge

      Pocket-Sized Speed Challenge
    • Super-Size Speed Challenge

      Super-Size Speed Challenge
    • Colors of the Rainbow Contest

      Colors of the Rainbow Contest

    11 Discussions


    5 years ago on Introduction

    Marvelous! Sew glad I stumbled upon this tutorial. I've read it; but apparently will need to re-read to get the concept down. I see one of these coming off my hand crank very soon.

    Thank you, Authoress, for sharing this.




    8 years ago on Introduction

    The skirt is awesome and you look beautiful. For the circle skirt pattern - I found an excellent tutorial/equation to use so you can very easily make a pattern yourself. It takes literally 5 minutes. I explain how to do it in my instructable here: but for even more details - here is a link to a great tutorial with more photos as well: :) Good luck with the contest - hope we both win! :))))


    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    So sorry I didn't reply earlier, I was in the sticks with no internet service. I love your tutorial! I tried to figure out an equation just like that, but apparently my math skills are rusty. I will add this link to my instructable! CONGRATS! Loved your winning peplum skirt!


    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    Thank you so much - I understand about internet problems!!! It's frustrating :) Congratulations to you too on winning!!!! You definitely deserve to win on there too. The skirt is so cute - such a creative idea and I love it - looks amazing! My math skills aren't the greatest either. I am surprised how much you need math in calculating measurements for patterns. Are you sewing anything else now?


    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    Thank you! I am always working on something. I'm nearly finished with a 1950's inspired, white (gulp) dress, with a contrasting origami belt. What's new for you?


    8 years ago on Introduction

    Nice choice of fabrics-your directions are well written, easy to follow-pictures are beautiful-I know I could follow these instructions easily and be happy with the finished product!
    Interesting techniques with a "twist"!
    Nice job Katie-am looking forward to more Instructables from you!