I don’t know about anybody else but I’m going through a skirt phase at the moment. Maybe it’s because I can feel the cooler weather coming and I’m trying to hold onto my summer vibe for as long as possible.
For this post I am going to focus on how to draft a wrap skirt with frill and I will do a second post on how to sew the skirt.
You will need some pattern paper, pencil, rubber, ruler, curve ruler if you own one, tape measure, tracing wheel, paper scissors and a round dinner plate with a diameter of approx 25.5cm.
To start, draft yourself a 1/4 circle skirt pattern following the instructions on my How to make a clashing print 1/4 circle swing skirt blog post. Stop at the point once your 1/4 circle skirt pattern is complete.
Fold your 1/4 circle skirt in half and trace onto a new piece of paper. This will be the front or back of your wrap skirt. Be sure to mark the midline of the skirt when tracing if off. This will be the centre front or centre back of your skirt.
To create a better shape for a wrap skirt follow the below steps. The blue line is the original side seam of the 1/4 circle skirt.
- Mark a point 16cm down 1 side seam from the waist. Mark a 2nd point 1.5cm out from this point.
- Mark a 3rd point 32cm down from the waist seam on the same side.
- My 1/4 circle skirt was 60cm long which is a good midi length on me. The length of your 1/4 circle skirt may vary depending on your height. Mark a point 6cm in from the side seam at the hem.
- Draw a curved line from the waist through point 2 crossing back over the 1/4 circle side seam at point 3. Then draw a straight line from point 3 to the point at the hem.
- Mark a final point 6cm up from the hem on your new side seam line. This will be the new length of the skirt (without the frill).
- Mark a point 37cm down from the waist on the midline of the pattern.
- Mark a point on the opposite side waist 3cm in from the side seam.
- Draw a curved line from the hem, through the point on the mid line finishing at the point 3cm in from the side seam at the waist.
You now have the outline of your front wrap skirt. I have this outlined in green pen on my image.
To create the back body pattern, fold the paper in half along the midline and trace your new side seam so it will be the same on the other side of your pattern.
Fold out the pattern and mark the side seam of the back skirt in red.
To finish off the back pattern mark a point 8cm up from the 1/4 circle pattern piece. Connect this point with the side seam.
You now have the back pattern piece which is outlined in red on my image.
The outline for your front and back pattern piece is now complete. I recommend keeping this outline complete and trace off your pattern pieces to add seam allowance. This enables you to make any adjustments once you test the fit of your skirt.
First trace your front pattern piece by pinning your outline to a new piece of paper. Trace around the pattern using a tracing wheel. Be sure to trace your midline as this will also be the grain line of the pattern.
To finish off the front pattern piece add a 1cm seam allowance all the way around the pattern, mark your grain line and label the pattern to cut 1 pair. Notch the centre front and add 2 notches to the front curve. I added a notch 26cm down from the waist seam and 25cm in from the hem.
Then trace off your back pattern piece by pinning your outline to a new piece of paper and tracing with the tracing wheel. To finish off the back pattern piece add 1cm seam allowance all the way around and label the pattern to cut 1 on fold.
Now it’s time to create your frill pattern pieces. In preparation measure the front hem curve and back hem. My front hem curve is measuring 79cm and the back hem is 33cm.
To create the back frill use a round dinner plate that has a circumference of approx 25.5cm. If the plate is slightly bigger or slightly smaller it will be ok. Place you plate on a new piece of paper and trace around as per the image below.
Now measure around the circumference the distance of your back hem measurement. Draw a line 20cm out from the beginning and end of your line. 20cm is the length of the frill. You can shorten or lengthen the frill to whatever length you desire.
Mark a few points around the curve at 20cm to help guide the hem line of the frill all the way around. Add 1cm seam allowance to the top edge of the frill and one side seam of the frill. Add a 1.2cm hem to the lower edge of the frill which will be a 6mm roll hem to finish the frill edge. Mark the other edge of the back frill with a centre back on fold. Your back frill pattern is now complete.
Thr front frill pattern is slightly more complicated as you don’t want the circle to be to tight as you get closer to the top edge of your skirt. It will be to fluted around your hip area which is not as flattering on the body.
To start draw a circle around your plate and mark the circle into quarters.
At the half way point of the circle mark a point 8cm back along the curve. You will start to straighten the curve at this point. Mark another point 11cm away from the circle 3/4 of the way around the circle. Draw a curve line through these points. This curve will form inner edge of your frill.
Measure around 25cm from the beginning of the circle which is the distance to your first notch on the front skirt hem pattern. Mark a notch at this point. Then measure around the distance of your second notch. Mine was 27cm but yours may vary depending on the size of your skirt. Finally measure around 26cm to the top of the front frill.
The width of your frill is going to get narrower as you move to the top of the frill. To create a nice frill width measure out 16cm at the first notch and 11cm at the second notch. Then free hand draw a curve through these points until you see a nice curve frill shape.
Finally add seam allowance to the side seam and top edge of the frill. Then add 1.2cm hem at the bottom edge of the frill. Mark a grain line on the frill that is parallel to the side seam.
Next create your waistband pattern piece. To do this measure the waist of the front and back skirt pattern pieces.
Break your waistband up into the back waistband marking centre back and the side seam and then mark you centre front, finishing at the front side. My back waist measures 34cm (17cm to CB, 17cm to SS). My front waist is 17.5cm to CF and 13.5cm to front side. My total waistband was 65.5cm long. This is 5cm shorter than my true waist measurement which is fine given the crossover and tie side. The waistband width is 3.5cm finished which will be 7cm in total width. Finally add 1cm seam allowance all the way around your waistband.
The left front will be finished with a facing. To create the facing, pin the front pattern piece to a new piece of paper and trace around the top edge and down the sides. The waistband facing width will be 6cm (includes seam allowance at top edge when tracing). Note which side is the side seam and check which side to label to ensure it will be the left front facing.
The final two pattern pieces are the button tab which is a rectangle 7cm x 9cm and the ties which are 52cm x 5.5cm at one end and 4.5cm at the other end.
Your self drafted wrap skirt pattern is now complete. Be sure to test your pattern before making in your final fabric and make any adjustments as required.
Keep an eye out for the blog post on how to sew your skirt in the coming weeks.
Please feel free to leave feedback on my tutorials. This will help me improve my delivery. Pattern making can be quite complex and my aim is to be a clear as possible. I’m working towards creating video tutorials once I get over my video camera phobia!
If you do create your own wrap skirt please use the #marshastyle or tag me @tareemarsh so I can check out your makes Goodluck, and I am always here to answer any questions you may have about creating this pattern.