Thursday, August 30, 2012

DIY Maternity Skirt from Swim Coverup or Smocked Fabric

So my mom bought me this swim coverup like 2 or 3 years ago and I've worn it like once ever. I liked the fabric, but I'm so busty that stretched out smocking on my chest was just very unflattering. Poor coverup sat unworn in my dresser for years, never to see the light of a pool deck. (in case you aren't sure, smocking kind of looks like the fabric is scrunched up in rows or diamonds and is naturally stretchy)
But my latest sewing project has promoted this unfortunate coverup to my regular rotation, and I'll show you how. Somehow it hit me that smocking=stretchy=maternity panel!

What you need:
  • A swimsuit coverup with a smocked top (which should be on clearance right now! look for a cotton or knit, not terry cloth) or
  • Smocked top fabric (I've seen it at Wal-Mart and at more specialized stores like Jo-Ann's, usually to make dresses for little girls, but it is available in lots of pretty prints and not just Disney princesses and fairies)
  • Scissors
  • Thread in coordinating color

decorative stitches make it less obvious if you don't stitch perfectly straight
What you do:
  • Cut off straps if applicable
  • If you are starting with fabric instead of a coverup, you'll probably want to get it so that unstretched it is about the same width as the width of your waist under your bump or maybe an inch or two smaller. Then, sew it into a tube. You'll lose a half inch or inch sewing it, but the stretch will make up for it. If you make it too loose it'll fall off, and the smocking really is quite stretchy. 
  • Cut the skirt a few inches longer than you think you really want it. I chose knee length, but you can do any length you want! (my finished length was 21 inches, so about 22 inches cut length. I am short, and the top 7" were smocking which I intend to be covered by my shirts and not actually showing, so 14" from the bottom of the smocking to the bottom of the skirt)
  • Pin to check and cut off again for eveness and perfect length, leaving about 1" for seam allowance
  • Fold the fabric over 1/2", iron, then fold another 1/2" and iron again. Pin if desired
  • Sew a line about 1/4" in using a decorative stitch
  • Wear your new skirt!
So comfy on the bump!

It seriously took me less than a half hour total, and would've taken even less time if I didn't have a 3-year-old to watch!

I want to try to find a long one in a knit fabric and make a maxi skirt next-if it works I'll update this post with a picture of that too!

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