Rockabilly circle skirt

Rockabilly circle skirt

You most probably have wore a circle skirt in your life (even if you’re a boy!); it’s the type you’d call also princess skirt or “spinning skirt”, because it flows so nice when you turn around. Several Disney princesses, like Aurora from Sleeping Beauty, Belle from Beauty and the Beast and Anna from Frosen wore circle skirts in the movies, because it flows so gracefully. No wonder the rockabilly movement favored it – the rockabilly dance has plently of spins and skips, so dancers wearing the circle skirt can be most spectacular.

Cutting method of the fabric goes exactly you’d suspect by its name: You cut a great circle with a smaller circle matching your waistline in the middle, and that’s all.
But what if the fabric is striped? If you follow the method described above the stripes will be messy, so we have to find another way.

Well, if you have ever asked yourself over a difficult math homework WHERE are you going to use this in real life, here is the answer! To draw the pattern of the circle skirt! In this post I’ll show you how to construct a sewing pattern for the paneled circle skirt fast and easy.

The maths (I suggest you write the underlined values on a paper so they”ll always be around when needed):

  • Measure your waistline (or to be precise the circumference of the part where the skirt begins. It may vary depending on the fashion: wether it’s a high-waist skirt or a hipskirt, or something in between.) (And no cheating, you don’t have to impress the pattern.)
  • Divide the waistline by 6.28 to get the waist radius.
  • Add the required length to the waist radius to get the skirt radius.
  • Multiply the skirt radius by 6.28 to get the circumference of the skirt.
rockabilly circle skirt sewing pattern
My waistline and the circumference of the skirt (in centimetres)

Okay, no more maths. Now to drad the patterns you have to do the following:

  • Decide how many panels are needed. The more panelt you use the more difficult and more smooth it’ll turn out to be. In this tutorial I’ll use eight, but your numbers may vary.
  • Divide the waistline and the circumference by the number of the panels.
  • You have to construct a trapezium where the top side is the waistline divided by the number of panels, the bottom side is the circumference divided by the number of panels, and the height equals the required length of the skirt. It should look somewhat like this:
rockabilly circle skirt sewing pattern
Trapezium and my pink socks
  • You have to cut this trapezium shape (with some seam allowance) from the fabric as many times as many panels you used for the math part.
  • seaming is relatively easy: you have to sew together the panels by their side so they’ll form a circle shape.
  • If you have used your exact waist measurement you have to insert a zipper or add buttons to one of the seams. If you used bigger measurement than your actual waist you can insert a rubber band to the waistline.

rockabilly circle skirt sewing pattern

  • I have also added a non-elastic waistband to reach the resemblance of actual ’60s rockabilly circle skirt.

The final piece:

rockabilly circle skirt sewing pattern
You can see the circular shape
rockabilly circle skirt
My very own handmade circle skirt.