Skip to main content

Made by a Fabricista: A Convertible Skirt

Have you ever heard of a convertible skirt? It's a skirt that doubles as a strapless dress. The waistband is like a yoga pants waistband that folds over as a skirt, and then you unfold it and pull it up higher if you want to wear it as a strapless dress!

I've been wanting to try one for a while, and when I saw this gorgeous rayon knit at Fabric Mart last month, I decided it would be perfect for this project.  Here is it is as the dress on my dress form:



And here it is as a skirt on me!



The pattern is New Look 6379. It is a super easy pattern with just two pieces for the skirt- the waistband and the skirt itself. You can make the skirt straight or with the handkerchief hem, and I decided to try the handkerchief hem to have fun with the stripe of the knit. The rayon knit is very stretchy, so I did need to cut a couple sizes smaller than normal.



There is elastic in the waist, near the bottom where the skirt attaches to the waistband. This helps to secure it as a skirt, but does nothing to secure it as the dress bodice! I'm pretty sure that if I wore this as a dress, I would be constantly worried that it would be falling down. So, if you try this pattern as a dress, I'd recommend sticking with a fabric that has a high lycra content, and great bounceback- something like a swimwear or active wear fabric might be a better choice!

The hem looks complicated, but it really is all just straight lines that when hanging down, form this unusual hemline.  Here you can see a little more of what the skirt piece shape is:

But left to hang loose, it looks like this from the side:



I knew that I wanted to wear this with a black tank top, and found this pretty pattern in my Burda magazine from July of 2007. If you have this issue, check it out! It's a fun tank with a twist. I made it using a jet black rayon jersey from Fabric Mart also. I also made a white tank version, but it looked a little too pajama like, and I decided that I liked the black version much better.



The construction is very clever. The front has very long straps that you knot and then attach to the back.  You cut a second front piece that ends just below the bust, and this serves as a facing for the strap, neckline and armhole area of the front. Really, really fun to sew!



I did not hem the skirt.  With knits that don't ravel, hemming is completely optional. I think that the raw edge is a more modern finish, and goes well with the abstract art fabric design.  You can kind of see the stripe more clearly in the sitting pose here. 




Have you tried making a convertible skirt pattern? Although I probably won't be wearing this as the dress, I really do like it as a skirt, and will be making more! It's super quick and easy, and great for a skirt with a little something different.



Happy sewing!



Ann

Comments

  1. Looks great! Perfect for hot summer days

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hey there! Cute skirt/dress! Suits you beautifully. Off the top of my head, I'm just wondering how complicated it might be to add a casing for some 3/8" elastic to the top edge of the "dress" to help keep it in place? If you made the elastic the same length as the hips/waist area that it folds to, and zigzag it in place all around, it shouldn't bunch up when worn as a skirt, and most women have a larger high bust measurement than their waist and hips anyway, which should give you the "oomph" you're looking for. I'll be making one soonish, and I'll be trying that (I'll also need to double the width of the waistband so that the seam actually gets to the empire line on me as a dress) as well as adding buttonholes or twill tape loops for buttons or hooks on straps that I'll need to add for stability and bra coverage when I wear it as a dress, since strapless anything for me is never a good idea.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Nickie,
      Thank you for your idea. My high bust is 2" smaller than my upper hip measurement where that would hit if folded over, so I think that adding an elastic band there would not work for me personally. I do agree though that if your upper bust was larger, that would be a great idea! I like the idea of the twill tape loops for buttons too. Good luck on your version!

      Delete
  3. I don't know how I missed this fabric on the website since I look at it everyday! I would have bought some! Love the skirt/dress and the top. I'm not usually a fan of the handkerchief hem, but it is seriously stunning on this piece.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This fabric didn't last very long at all, popular!

      Delete

Post a Comment

Thanks for leaving a comment! All comments are reviewed before posting to help us eliminate spam. Your comment will be posted within 24 hours.

Popular Posts You Might Like

Made by a Fabricista: My Fall Ensemble

Hi everyone.  I am back and so eager to show you what I sewed for the transition to fall.   Our social calendar for the next three months is filling up so it is time to sew for fall.  Where I live, fall weather can vary from 60 to 80 degrees.  Linen is my “go to” fabric, especially for September and October.  Fabric Mart happened to have on sale the mid-weight navy /light blue linen with abstract geometric print. Due to the hugely discounted price, I could sew a fall ensemble that would consist of a duster, a pair of pants, and a sheath dress for about $50.00. Vogue V1756 pattern by Sandra Betzina caught my attention. It had a standup collar, buttoned front, and set-in sleeves, but its side front pockets hide behind a flange on each side front and the lower back had a gathered skirt. How unique! The pattern instructions, written by the designer herself, were easy to follow.  I sewed the duster in Size C and made no adjustments. Because of its style, color and maxi length, it can take m

Made by a Fabricista: Luxe Knits for A Classy and Yet Cozy Fall Wardrobe

Hello Fellow Sewists!  I’m excited to share my latest Fabricista make with you all, as I have started my transition in to sewing for Fall!  Now don’t get me wrong-I am by no means wishing summer away!  Summer is my favorite time of year here in Minnesota. But Fall is my second favorite. And I have done a ton of summer sewing. So I wanted to get a jump start on building a cozy, yet classy Fall wardrobe that will suit me perfectly as I’m at home more but still need to be put together for zoom meetings and running errands.  I chose two gorgeous sweater knit fabrics to work with for these outfits. I knew I wanted a great basic black knit fabric. And then I fell in love with the floral knit fabric as soon as I saw it!  So I am excited that I got to work with both.  My original intention was to make a mix and match wardrobe but as I thought about it, I hardly ever actually mix and match things!  So instead, I decided to use one of my favorite wrap dress patterns, Butterick 5454. I have made

Made by a Fabricista: The Perfect Statement Fabric

I’m 100% one of those people that select fabric solely based how I’m feeling in that moment.  I never have a project in mind or a look I want to make.  Once the fabric arrives and I get to touch it, within a few days the ideas start to come.  The only downside to this is a fabric stash that looks a bit like a retail store. When this double-faced satin suiting arrived, I initially considered a pant suit but thought this fabric was a little too special and at the last minute opted for something more dramatic despite having no place to where it.  I figured If nothing else, I can wear the skirt with a t-shirt for school drop-off lol. The top was made using a drafted bustier pattern with lots of boning and interfacing.  Definitely time consuming but well worth it.  I enjoy a nice dramatic sleeve and interfacing gave the sleeve enough structure to accomplish just that. The skirt was made using vintage McCalls 9260.  I have drawers and drawers filled with vintage patterns.  The beauty of vint