Easy Running Skirt

Posted by Stephanie Stachow on April 30th, 2018


Hello fellow sewists! It’s been too long! Long story short, I’m back for the summer and I wanted to share what I’ve been working on! My husband and I signed up for the RunDisney Star Wars Dark Side 5K at Walt Disney World and OF COURSE I had to make a little something for the occasion. My husband is 6’4″ so I decided he HAD to be Chewbacca and the logical choice was for me to be Han Solo. I didn’t have a ton of time leading up to the race since I was training, but I still wanted to make a little something. I got my hubby a Chewie t-shirt to wear instead of a full fur suit. I was able to find a white shirt and black vest fairly easily so naturally I decided to make a skirt that looked like Han Solo’s pants. Disclaimer: This is a fairly simple skirt that is mainly meant for decorative/costume purposes. I absolutely had to wear bike shorts with it for my run. If you are looking for actual active-wear, I highly recommend Loralee’s Serged Running Skort class. However, I still wanted it to be lightweight and comfortable to move in, so I went straight to our lycra department and found the perfect options.

I got 2 yards of navy Milliskin lycra for the main skirt

1/3 yard of red Mystique lycra for the stripe on the side of the skirt

1/3 yard of brown Milliskin lycra for the waistband

1/8 yard silver Mystique lycra for the belt buckle

I also picked up some navy and brown serger thread

I used my Babylock Diana serger to assemble the projectimg_8381

I actually started by making a basic circle skirt pattern which I can talk about in more detail in another post, if that is something that would interest you. But you can use any circle pattern that you’re comfortable with. We’re going to be adding about 4″ total to our waistline when we add the red stripe down the side so take that into account when you’re choosing your size. I like to cut out knit fabrics with fabric weights, a cutting mat, and a rotary blade. Knit fabrics tend to wiggle so using this method will help with your accuracy.


I also cut two strips out of the red Mystique fabric at 2 1/2″ by the width of the fabric. You can then measure the side seam of your pattern and cut them down accordingly.


I decided to use a 5 thread – Chain Stitch w/3 thread Overlock for my seams because it is the most secure and it sews and finishes my garment all at once!


I started sewing it together by sandwiching my red strips into my side seams. The main thing to focus on here is to not stretch either the skirt or the strip as your sewing them.


Since it was made from 4-way stretch fabric. I knew I wasn’t going to need to fuss with a zipper so I did this for all 4 seams. The main part of my skirt was complete!


The next step for me was to cut out my waistband. If you’re using a pre-existing pattern, follow the instructions. I cut 2 pieces that were 3″ wide and about 4″ smaller than my waist.


I sewed the long edges of the waistband together with the same 5 thread stitch. I then switched to a normal 2 thread chain stitch and understitched the top edge of the waistband because I’m a nerd and love understitching. This step is probably optional if it isn’t your thing.


Depending on your pattern, you may have to ease the skirt onto the waistband. Luckily, that is relatively easy when working with knits as long as you space it out evenly. I then flipped the piece of the waistband with understitching on it inside and stitched in the ditch with the chainstitch to finish it.


Han Solo has a whole multi-belt holster contraption that he wears and I felt that would add too much bulk and weight to my skirt but I did want to try to emulate part of it. He has a fairly distinctive belt buckle which I thought would be a nice touch. Looking at a picture that I found online, I used the different angles on my Omnigrid quilting ruler to rough out a pattern that looked similar enough to Han’s belt. I cut it out, sewed around the edges, turned it right side out, and topstitched it closed. I tried my skirt on for placement and pinned the buckle where I thought it looked best. I then hand stitched the edges of the buckle to the waistband.


If you take one thing away from this post let it be this: when sewing with knits, put stay tape in your hem! It makes a world of difference! I ironed stay tape to the edge of my hem (watch the heat settings on your iron when working with lycra) and then folded it up the width of the stay tape and ironed it again. Then I used my serger to cover stitch the hem and it looked perfect and super professional.


Ta da!!! I still had time to train for the race AND the real Chewbacca loved us! Again, if you’d like some hands on help with anything knit/serger related I highly recommend Loralee’s classes.


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