September 29th, 2011 / posted by paularath

That might sound like an impossible task but don’t give up on a skirt you love just because you shortened it – and now hems are dropping. DIY it! Here are several ways to lengthen a skirt from an article by Barbara Emodi I saved from Threads magazine many years ago. I have used two of these ideas – and created one of my own – to lengthen skirts I didn’t want to part with.

Photo and ideas courtesy of Threads magazine.

The floral skirt in the center is the easiest solution, so I’ll describe it first. The skirt has to have a side seam perpendicular to the hem so you can cut the skirt horizontally into two pieces and extend the length with a sewn-in fabric strip insert. Be sure to match grainlines and select a fabric with a similar hand (feel, texture, drape, weight). To give it extra length and more pizazz, try adding several strips of different colors and/or textures. An interesting or decorative topstitch can finish it off beautifully.

The red skirt on the left has a waistband that has been converted to a knit yoke that can be folded over, or not (along the lines of a yoga pant). This also makes the skirt more comfortable to wear. Remember with knits you need to use a zigzag stitch and different needle and thread.

The polka skirt on the right has a wavy insert that adds a lot of style along with the length. This style would be even cuter with a color coordinated rickrack trim at the top and bottom of the “wave.”

If you would like step-by-step directions on how to achieve any of these lengthening looks, please let me know. I’ve got ’em.

I am also trying a fourth method right now. I have a pretty, shimmery bottle green A-line skirt that has a built-in slip. I had shortened it to just below my knee but I want to try a new, longer length with it. I am going to use some vintage black lace (circa 1940s) in several layers at the bottom. I’ll report back if it works!

– Paula Rath

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Beth
December 7th, 2016 at 7:56 pm

I would like the directions for the one in the middle please. I’m a novice and appreciate your help. ????

paularath
December 9th, 2016 at 8:13 am

I am a writer/blogger, not the designer. Sorry I can’t help.

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