Creative articles about sewing

Reversible Wrap Skirt inspired by Bali

On my recent trip to Bali, I visited as many Hindu temples as possible.

In order to enter many of the temples, one has to dress respectfully. It is respectful to wear a long skirt or sarong to cover one’s legs and have one’s shoulders covered.

While in the beach village of Kuta, I bought a beautiful sarong at the busy local market. I’m not sure if it is a traditional Batik textile or the design is just inspired by the traditional Balinese textile. I was drawn to the colours and intricate designs.

When I got back to Cape Town, I decided that I needed to turn the fabric into a wearable garment. As the sarong is traditionally worn wrapped around one’s body, I thought it only made sense to make a wrap skirt!

Now when I wear the skirt I am reminded of beautiful memories of Bali.

Pattern

In my blog post for the 125th anniversary of Bernina: Sew a celebratory Golden Wrap Skirt  I mentioned that the Skirt could be made reversible.
This post is about how to do just that. You can use the same free pattern I provided in that post or any wrap skirt pattern of your choosing.

For this post I used the free Wrap Skirt Pattern made by In The Folds for Peppermint Magazine.
I altered the pattern a bit by shortening it and making it slightly more A-line.

What will be needed:

  • Sewing machine
  • Overlocker
  • Wrap Skirt Pattern
  • 2 different colour/patterned fabrics of the same weight
    (refer to your pattern & it’s instructions for amounts)
  • 3-4 spools Matching thread
    You may need 2 different colour threads depending on your choice of fabric.
  • Buttonhole foot (I used 3A)
  • Optional: Sewing foot #5

Steps

When I refer to the Lining, I just mean the other layer of fabric.

Sew and repeat

  1. If your pattern has darts, sew all the darts first.
    Repeat for the Lining.

  1. Join the Front pieces to the Back piece at the Side Seams.
    Repeat for the Lining.

  1. Overlock the Side Seams to finish the raw edges.
    I used the 4-thread stitch.
    Repeat for the Lining.

  1. Press the seams and darts.
    Press the side seams towards the back and the darts towards the side seams.
    To reduce the bulk, on the lining press the seams and darts the opposite way.

  1. Finish the raw edges of the hems with the overlocker and then sew up the hems.
    Ensure that the length of the skirt and lining are exactly the same.
    A hem is usually 1.5cm but refer to your chosen pattern.
    If you shortened the pattern like me then the hem is whatever you made it.

Joining the layers

  1. Join the Lining to the Skirt along the edges of the Front pieces.
    Remember to place Right sides together.

  1. Turn the skirt right side out and topstitch along the edges of the Front pieces.

  1. Join the Waistband pieces at the Centre Back seam or Side Seams (refer to your chosen pattern).
    Press the seams open to reduce bulk.

  1. Secure the Skirt pieces together along the top edge with stay stitching.
    Join the Waistband to the Skirt.
    Follow your chosen pattern’s instructions or refer to steps 5-15 of my blog post: Sew a celebratory Golden Wrap Skirt

  1. Sew a button hole at the Side Seam of the Waistband.
    (If the Front pieces of your Wrap Skirt are different, refer to your chosen pattern for the placement of the buttonhole)

  1. Join the 2 layers of the skirt together at the side seams on the hem.
    This will help prevent the hem of the under layer from showing when wearing the skirt.  


This beautiful place was one of my favourite spots in Bali. It was so peaceful sitting by this pond in the forest at Goa Gajah (Ubud) with dragonflies flying around.

This is what the fabric looked like originally when worn as a sarong. Here I wore it while visiting the incredible Goa Gajah. It is a gorgeous place that is home to both a Hindu and Buddhist temple as well as a cave (pictured here)

The wrap top I am wearing is the free Morning Glory pattern by Sarah Kirsten

Tips

  • For best results, I recommend that the 2 fabrics you choose be of the same weight or similar fibre content. This will ensure an even drape when the skirt is worn.
  • If you are concerned about the under layer showing, instead of sewing 2 separate hems, join the skirt hems together before attaching the waistband.

 

I would love to see what you make, please feel free to share with me!

If you use the same patterns I did, please tag the respective pattern designers and use their hashtags.
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-Hannah-Rose

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