A tube top sewn with elastic thread and a wrap-around skirt elasticized at the waistline fit perfectly without a need for darts. This summer out fit could be made in any size.
Sewing without a pattern
A wraparound skirt and tube top
To make a wraparound skirt with elasticized waist, two shaped rectangles are stacked right sides up and trimmed as shown in the diagram. The slanted left edges are then stitched together. The bottom corners at the right are rounded off. Measurements shown are for a child's size 4, but the proportions can be adjusted to fit any size.
The wraparound skirt with bound edges is proportioned for a small child, but it can also be made in women's sizes. The elasticized waistline can be tied at the side or front. The skirt is made of two rectangular scraps of cotton calico, left over from another sewing project, using these miniature measurements: 21 inches around the waistline and 9 inches long, finished. Elastic 1/2-inch wide makes the waistband.
Take two rectangles, each measuring at least 15 1/4 inches wide to provide hem and seam allowances, and 9 5/8 inches long to allow the waistline casing. Lay the rectangles wrong sides together and pin. Measure 10 1/2 inches across the top for the waistline, and draw a line connecting this point with the bottom left corner of the rectangles. Mark off 3 inches on both edges adjacent to the lower right-hand corner. Draw a line connecting the points to round off the tip. Cut out the skirt and join the two sections with a French seam. sew on the red bias binding using the directions on the page with the caftan pattern.
Measure 2 inches in from each side of the waistline, and mark each point to indicate where the elastic begins and ends. Fold the raw edge under 1/8 inch; then make a second fold to enclose the elastic (see photograph below). After stitching down one end of the elastic, sew the casing with the elastic inside. (Be careful not to stitch over the elastic) By following this method, you will avoid having to pull the elastic through the casing after it has been sewn. Gather in the casing to fit the waistline, and stitch the elastic down on the opposite end. Sew a hook and eye to close the skirt. Stitch two ties made from the red bias binding to the front flap and ant the waistline, where the flap meets the skirt.
To enclose the elastic and make the casing for the waistline of the child's skirt, fold the fabric over the elastic, as shown, and stitch.
To stitch the tubular top with elastic thread, hold your index finger behind the presser foot, and press down firmly against the fabric.
To make the matching top, one length of fabric 42 inches long and 9 inches wide was sewn with elastic thread. The fabric's long dimension circles the torso and is seamed down the center back. Row upon row of elastic thread running around the tube gives it its stretch. The tube is 6 inches long finished; the other 3 inches were turned up to make the top and bottom hems. The red shoulder ties are made from extra pieces of bias binding used for the skirt.
Thread the bobbin with elastic thread, winding it tightly by hand, until the bobbin is almost full. The elastic thread should come off the bobbin with plenty of stretch; so be sure the tension is tight enough. Leave your regular sewing thread on top, but set the machine for a long stitch in order to give the elastic thread as much play as possible. Turn under the raw edge 1 1/2 inches for the top hem, and catch it in the first row of stitches. Sew the rest of the rows 1 inch apart except for the bottom which is hemmed in the same manner as the top. As you sew, hold your index finger right behind the presser foot, and press down hard against the fabric to hold it taut.
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