For those of you who don’t recognize me, hi! I am Miranda. I help out behind the scenes at Deer&Doe with content and marketing tasks. While I don’t often appear in front of the camera, I do make a point to sew all of our new releases and I jumped at the chance to sew this hack for you all.
Summer is very much still in full swing where I live in southern California, and I wanted to make something that could take me through the end of the season and into fall as temperatures drop. This Robert Kaufman Essex Linen was perfect for the more casual look I was going for, but this dress would be stunning in something more fluid like a rayon print or tencel twill.
You can also play with length, and you’ll notice in our tutorial below that you’re going to start with the long skirt piece regardless of what style you ultimately end up with. A maxi version would be stunning, and I would personally love to make another with a midi skirt. Whatever view you decide to make (long or short), you’ll follow the same fabric requirements as indicated in the original pattern for that length.
A few notes about fit: my current measurements are 34” // 29” // 40” (87 cm // 74 cm // 101 cm) and I am 5’6” (1.67 m). I made a size 40 with a 2” (5 cm) small bust adjustment following our tutorial here. I am petite in the torso so I kept the button spacing as-is in the original bodice (pre-SBA), which had the effect of slightly shortening the neckline—a standard adjustment on all patterns for me.
Without further ado, let’s get into the hack instructions!
Start from version A of the front leg (#10). Draw a line parallel to the straight grain arrow, going through the front fly dot marking. This will be the center front line.
Draw a line parallel to the center front line ⅝ in (1.5 cm) to the outside. This will be the first button band fold line.
Note: if you are using another pattern to create this hack, you can use the bodice piece to determine the width of the button band. Measure the distance between the buttonholes and the edge of the bodice piece (1⅛ in / 3 cm), and remove the seam allowance (⅝ in / 1.5 cm).
Draw another parallel line 1⅛ in (3 cm) to the outside of the first fold line. This will be the second fold line.
Draw one last line ⅝ in (1.5 cm) to the outside of the second fold line. This will be the edge of the front skirt piece.
Draw the top and bottom of the button band perpendicular to the edge of the piece. True the adjustment by extending this line ⅝ in (1.5 cm) inside of the center front line, creating a right angle on the finished edge of the piece.
If necessary, adjust the top and bottom edge curves slightly to meet the button band.
Draw the buttonholes along the the center front line. Place the top of the first buttonhole 2⅛ in (5.4 cm) from the top edge of the pattern piece, and space the rest 2 ⅜ in (6 cm) from each other. The buttons are each ⅝ in (15 mm) long and there are 10 total for the maxi-length skirt. Mark buttons on the center of each buttonhole.
To shorten the skirt, draw a curved line parallel to the edge of the piece at your desired height.
Extend the top of the back crotch curve all the way to the bottom of the pattern piece (#11).
Draw a parallel line ⅝ in (1.5 cm) to the inside and fold back or remove the extra paper. This will now be the center back and you will cut this piece on fold.
Adjust the bottom curve slightly, making sure it ends at a right angle at the center back.
To shorten the skirt, draw a curved line parallel to the edge of the piece. Double check your seam lines and make sure the height matches the front piece.
Remember to cut the back skirt on the fold. Proceed with the instructions as normal until step 4 – 6.
Stitch the outside of each skirt piece. Finish the seam allowances and press them towards the back of the skirt.
Fold the bottom of the skirt ⅝ in (1.5 cm) to the inside. Fold again 1⅛ in (3 cm) to the inside. From the right side, topstitch the hem in place 1 in (2.8 cm) from the edge.
Form the buttonbands. Fold the front edge of the skirt ⅝ in (1.5 cm) to the inside. Fold again 1⅛ in (3 cm) to the inside. From the right side, topstitch the buttonband in place 1 in (2.8 cm) from the edge. Repeat on the other side.
Skip steps 4 – 8 through 4 – 14. Proceed with the instructions as normal at step 5-1.