**disclaimer: I am not a professional designer or tailor by any means. I love to sew and craft so this has become a beloved past time for me. I have adapted these instructions for my own use from the Shira.net and Rostitchery websites. This is not my design.**
If you have any questions please private message me :)
- compass (or string)
- metre stick (yard stick)
- square (right angled ruler)
- pattern weights (or traditional pins or things like soup cans)
- serger (or sewing machine)
- 1 inch elastic
- bodkin (or safety pin)
- large open space (floor or table)
- right side of fabric - right side or face of fabric...Jersey fabric may or may not have a design on it, the side with the clearer design is the right side, alternatively the shinier side will also be the right side.
Roll out the newsprint on the floor or table. Depending on how long the skirt is you may need to cut the sheet into two pieces and tape them together to make them wider.
Next measure your waist, figure out how long you want the skirt to be and then go to Shira's site and find the corresponding measurement in the waist/2-panel/3-panel table (to be clear this is a two panel skirt).
Using your compass draw the first 1/2 circle at the top centre of the pattern. This will make the waist of the skirt. Add that number, the length of the skirt and an extra 1/2 inch to get the length you will need for your compass to make the bottom of the skirt. Draw another half circle, keeping the sharp point of the compass in same spot from when you drew the waist.
Now you will need two measurements for the wrap panels. The first one determines the width of the fabric. Starting with the tape measure in the centre between your breasts, measure over the fullest part of your breast, over the arm, as it rests at your side, to the edge of your arm where it ends at the side of your body. The next measurement determines how long the panels should be. Take your height and convert to inches (you can be accurate and use 1/2 or 3/4 inches or you can round up), then multiply by 1.5. That will be the length of the panels.
Using first the square ruler to ensure that the width line is straight, then the metre stick to draw the length of the lines; cut away the extra paper.
lay your fabric out, there are two ways you can do this. The jersey fabric I chose had a 4-way stretch, meaning it stretched out side to side and up and down. If your pattern is small enough you can lay it out horizontally (across the width) of the fabric or, if it is too large, lay it vertically. For the sake of this how-to I have laid the pattern out vertically.
Lay the pattern down and weight down with the pattern weights. Cut out two of the half circles.
Lay out the panel pattern and cut two of those. Weight down the same as previous for the skirt.
You will need to cut out a waist band, this just needs to be 3 inches in width and longer than the waist of the skirt.
Now to sew the dress together. First sew the waist band together, wrong sides together and only along the bottom, you will need to leave both ends open for the elastic later.
Sew togther the two sides of the skirt, right sides togther.
Find the center front and center back of the skirt, you can do this by matching the side seams togther and folding the skirts in half, that will be your center.
Pin the waist band to the skirt, right sides together with the two edges starting and ending at the center front.
Pin the panels to the fabric, again right sides together, you will need to overlap the panels approx 3 inches at the center front (this will be for later coverage). Then sew together all pieces.
Turn the skirt right side out and you will see that the panels cover the waist band (this is correct).
Insert the elastic using the bodkin.
(insert pic showing insertion of elastic)
Try the skirt on and adjust the elastic (pulling tighter) until you feel comfortable. Overlap the elastic together and pin; stitch on two sides of the elastic and then from top to bottom across the diaganol to make an X (this will ensure that should the stitching fail on one of the edges you have redundancy in place and it won't come apart).
Next ensure that the hem is even. You may need to bring someone else in to help you with this unless you have a dress-makers mannequin (very helpful, very expensive, very optional). Once done, if you have used a jersey fabric you can leave the hem unstitched or you can do a rolled hem on the serger.
My favourite way of doing a rolled hem is to pull the fabric slightly while stitching it (second pic).
This is to give the edge a slight "lettuce leaf" look (second pic).
To wrap this dress see this video courtesy of the Dessy.com website, these videos courtesy of the Henkaa website or the picture below for some different stylings (apparently there are over 100 different ways to style this dress):