Home » DIY tutorial: No pattern, simple summer skirt with pockets

DIY tutorial: No pattern, simple summer skirt with pockets

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Learn how to make a simple summer skirt with an elastic waistband and pockets with this step-by-step tutorial. This lightweight, flared skirt fits perfectly and the pockets are so convenient!

simple summer skirt with pockets tutorial

To make your own summer skirt you only need to measure your waist and the desired length of the skirt.

Patterns seem too complicated for these hot, lazy days of summer. I whipped up this comfy, no-pattern skirt in less than an hour (including the time for photographing all the steps), and I’m sure it won’t pose a challenge to anyone.

DIY summer skirt with in-seam pockets

So, here’s how to make this easy flared summer skirt with pockets. The in-seam pockets add functionality to any skirt and they are so easy to sew!

To make my skirt, I used a lightweight cotton fabric and 1/8″ wide elastic for the waistband.

Sewing supplies – flared skirt with an elastic waistband and pockets 

How to make an easy summer skirt tutorial

Step 1 – draft the pattern pieces

Fold your fabric in half, and measure 1/2 of your waist measurement minus 2 inches from the folded edge. 

Remember that this is the front piece on the fold, and the back piece will be identical.

Each of the skirt pieces is half of the total width needed.

So, in the end, the fullness of the skirt will about 1.7 times your waist measurement.

simple summer skirt, no pattern needed

I did this because I wanted to reduce the gathers at the waist but still maintain the effect of fullness in the skirt.

Then measure your desired skirt length – I wanted a midi skirt, so my skirt length is 27 inches (I added 1 inch for the hem).

At the top of the skirt, I measured 12 inches (my waist measurement is 27.5 inches).

At the bottom, I measured 19 inches – that 1/2 my hip measurement, plus 2 additional inches. That’s 7 inches longer than the top of the skirt, and that means that the fullness of the bottom of the skirt will be about 2 times my hip measurement, plus 8 inches. That’s enough wearing ease, I think.

Anyway, you may add more or less flare to your skirt – just move the tape measure according to how much flare you want your skirt to have. Make a gently curved hemline.

flared skirt, cutting pattern pieces

Then add the waistband, straight up and down – just draft a 3” tall rectangle. 

Cut out two identical pattern pieces.

Related: Tiered ruffle skirt tutorial

Step 2 – prepare the pocket pieces

After that, print the pocket pattern and cut the pockets.

inseam pocket pattern

You’ll need two identical pieces that are mirror images to each other – and these two pieces form one pocket. Repeat and cut out two more pieces for the other pocket.

Measure down about 3” from the top of the skirt pieces (just ignore the waistband piece) and mark that point – this is where you’ll start lining up the top of your pockets. Now take the pocket pieces and pin them, right sides together, on your skirt, matching the edges. 

attach pockets to skirt tutorial

Then stitch the pocket pieces on the side seam of the skirt – make sure the pockets are symmetrical on both sides. Finish the raw edges with a zigzag stitch or a serger.

finish side seam pocket instructions

Step 3 – sew the side seams

Place the two skirt pieces with right sides together and pin. Stitch along the entire length of both side seams and around the pockets.

sewing side seams flared skirt

Zig-zag or serge around the raw edges to keep them from fraying.

serge side seams skirt with pockets pattern

While you’re at it, serge the top edge of the waistband.

Step 4 – make the waistband

Fold down 1.5” the waistband. You’ll need to stitch multiple rows and insert smaller lengths of elastic through each casing.

how to make an elastic waistband for the flared skirt

First, edgestitch the top edge of the waistband – stitch 1/8 inch away from the folded edge, all the way around – no need to leave an opening.

Stitch the second row 3/8 inch from the 1st row of stitching, the third 1/8” away from the second, and the fourth 3/8” from the third. For all these rows, you need to leave an opening so you can thread the elastic. 

multiple rows elastic casing skirt with pockets

 Now you can feed two pieces of 1/8” wide elastic (or 1.4” wide elastic) in the two channels that are 3/8” wide.

I cut both my elastic pieces 4” shorter than my waist measurement.

two elastic channels waistband casing tutorial DIY

Join the elastic ends and then sew shut all three openings.

Step 5 – hem the skirt

I made a double-fold hem for my skirt. First, I stitched 1/4” away from the raw edge, then I folded the hem and pressed it in place with the iron.

Last, I folded the fabric toward the wrong side again, by approximately 1/2 inch, pressed it well, and edge-stitched the folded edge in place.

double turned hem skirt

You can also use a serged and turned hem or make a narrow hem with your serger.

And that’s all – this cute everyday skirt is ready to wear!

DIY summer flared skirt tutorial

I love having somewhere to put my hands when I’m standing! Every skirt should have pockets, don’t you think?

flared skirt with pockets tutorial

Did you find this summer skirt tutorial helpful? I’d like to hear what you think of it! And I would LOVE to see pictures if you give this skirt a try.

Let’s keep in touch! You can find me on FacebookInstagram, and Pinterest.


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