balloon style skirt tutorial

Balloon styled skirts are both fun to make and give a nice result without hems and raw edges anywhere in sight and may I say I think that they are rather quick to make to.

This skirt is lovely to make in a taffeta fabric since it gets a lot of poof from the fabric itself that way, but i have made balloon style skirts in both organza and jersey fabric with great result when using.
For lining use ordinary lining fabric or make sure that it is a fabric that is a bit “slippery” a cotton lining will make the skirt “rise” as you walk in it unless you have “slippery” tights or is bare legged.

This is what you will need
Fashion fabric – I use the width of the fabric to make this skirt, you need to pieces so for my skirt I will need two 150 cm (59,1 inches) wide and 60 cm (23,6 inches) long pieces.
Lining fabric – Half the width of the fashion fabric, again it is convenient to use the width of the fabric for this so for this skirt i am using 150 cm (59,1 inches) wide and 40 cm (15,7 inches) long. To make the poof in the bottom you will need the lining to be shorter then the fashion fabric.
A zipper
A button
Fabric for your waistband – the measurement of were you want the skirt to sit, for me that would be 95 cm (37,4 inches) + 4 cm (1,6 inches) + sewing allowance on both sides (I use 1 cm/ 0,4 inches on each side); in total for me 101cm (39,8 inches) this is the length of your waistband piece and then how wide you want it to be.
sewing a balloon skirt 1

We are starting with the fashion fabric, put the two pieces right sides together.
sewing a balloon skirt 2

Sew one side from the top and down, on the other, leave a part in the top not sewn, this is for the zipper.
sewing a balloon skirt 3

Press the sewing allowance apart.
sewing a balloon skirt 4

Insert zipper.
sewing a balloon skirt 5

Sew gathering stitches in the top and bottom of your fashion fabric, I do it by setting my sewing machine on the longest straight stitch that I can.
sewing a balloon skirt 6

Now on to the lining, put it right sides together and sew, but leave a part for the zipper, press the sewing allowance apart.sewing a balloon skirt 7

Sew gathering stitches in the TOP of your lining, not the bottom.
sewing a balloon skirt 8

Put your lining and fashion fabric, right sides together in the bottom.
sewing a balloon skirt 9

Gather the fashion fabric to the lining, make sure that it ruffles even.
sewing a balloon skirt 10

Sew the lining and fashion fabric together.
sewing a balloon skirt 11

If you have done it right, you will have this silly looking thing.
sewing a balloon skirt 12

Tuck the lining inside, so that you now have the fabrics wrong sides together.
sewing a balloon skirt 13

Something like this.
sewing a balloon skirt 14

To explain the next part I wanted to show you how your waistband will look like when it is finished. It have a flap of fabric that holds the button, this flap is hidden when the skirt is on.
sewing a balloon skirt 15

A visual guide over the sewing allowance and flap thing, the thing in between is the measurement of where you want your skirt to sit, this is also on this space you want to gather your fabric in the next step
sewing a balloon skirt 16

Now you are going to gather the fashion fabric to the waistband. Put the fashion fabric and waistband fabric (they are probably the same fabric but i call them this to make it clearer) right sides together. Remember to gather the fabric on the part of the waistband I show you on the last picture, in between the sewing allowance on one side and the flap + sewing allowance on the other.
sewing a balloon skirt 17

Then put the lining fabric wrong sides together to the fashion fabric and gather it to. Since you have half as much fabric in the lining fabric the ruffling will not be as much as on the fashion fabric.
sewing a balloon skirt 18

Sew the three layers of fabric together.
sewing a balloon skirt 19

Look you can actually see the skirt now.
sewing a balloon skirt 20

Now on to the waistband sewing. Before sewing we have some folding to do, first fold in and press the sewing allowance, here 1 cm (inches). Next step is to fold the waistband in half, and put it right sides together.
sewing a balloon skirt 21

Now sew of the ends of the waistband.
sewing a balloon skirt 22

Cut the corners of, this will make it less bulky when you are tuning it over.
sewing a balloon skirt 23

Fold it over, tuck the raw edges of the skirt inside of the waistband. Stitch together the opening in the bottom of the flap by hand.
sewing a balloon skirt 24

Sew the inside of the waistband by hand to.
sewing a balloon skirt 25

Also sew the lining to the inside of the zipper.
sewing a balloon skirt 26

Sew a buttonhole in one side, put the skirt on and mark out were on the flap to put the button and then sew it on.
sewing a balloon skirt 27

Lookie lookie a cute skirt is now done.
sewing a balloon skirt

One can just as easy put the balloon skirt on a dress bodice, i have have done here.

A bodice in linen and skirt in organza lined with taffeta
empire waist balloon dress

Bodice and skirt both in organic cotton.
organic cotton jersey balloon dress

13 thoughts on “balloon style skirt tutorial

  1. Hi Cathrin

    Loved your blog, particularly the pattern for the baloon skirt. Hope to make one soon! Please post some more blogs on do-it-yourself clothing projects. Thanx!

  2. We’re a bunch of volunteers and starting a new scheme in our community. Your web site offered us with valuable info to work on. You’ve performed a formidable task and our entire group shall be grateful to you.

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  4. I do not know whether it’s just me or if perhaps everyone else encountering issues with your blog. It appears like some of the written text on your posts are running off the screen. Can someone else please comment and let me know if this is happening to them as well? This may be a issue with my internet browser because I’ve had
    this happen previously. Kudos

  5. Thanks to your great tutorial our Panto Dame will be going to the ball in super frock!
    just have to figure out to make a top now ( long sleeves to cover the tattoos)
    Any suggestions?

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