Felt elf skirt tutorial

As promised, here is the felt skirt I made for the elf day at school. I searched on the web but could not find anything related to elf skirts. The web will be much better with a felt elf skirt tutorial, don’t you  agree?

you will need:

1.50 m of red felt

1 m of green felt

50 cm of black felt

a sheet of yellowish felt

7 or 8 green pompoms (but you can use red or gold)

about 4 m of green ric rac

red thread

green thread

black thread

sewing paraphernalia

Start by folding your red felt in half and in half again , same with the green felt:

Your green felt is smaller than the red. Measure the desired length. I decided i wanted my skirt to be 19 1/2″. now for the math bit: you need to measure the radius. measure your waist divide it by PI (3.14), divide the result by 2 and you have your radius. Normally with fabric you would round up the radius for comfort but I would say to not round it up or even round it down as felt stretches quite a lot.

From the folded corner measure the radius and mark from one side to the other:

cut on marked line:

Measure 19 1/2″ from the cut arc all the way round (you cannot see it very well on the pic but I have marked it)Now cut it:

you should have a perfect circle with a hole in the middle, put it aside. repeat the same steps with your green felt for the radius:

mark 10 1/2″ (I know picture says otherwise but I changed my mind!) from radius all the way round and cut:

fold it in half to mark the middle:

mark the felt from center to corners:

it should look like that:and cut:

once cut the green felt should look when open like this:

lay it on top of your red skirt, pin and tack:

we’re going to insert the zip. don’t be scared, it’s dead easy! no seam needed as it’s felt!

mark with a pen where the zip end:

mark a line from those two dots:

and cut:

insert the zip and pin it:

sew using a zipper foot all the way round:

pin the green ric-rac at the bottom of the skirt and sew:

Before I did anything else, I checked if the felt skirt was fitting nicely on my hips and it was a bit too large. This is because felt stretches quite a lot. In order to get your skirt fitting nicely I would try it on and pin some darts on the top of the skirt whilst still wearing the skirt. sew in place and check again if it fits you.

Cut a waist band from the black felt. Measure your waist and add 2″. The extra inches will overlap on the other side of waist band to hold it and make it look nice.

Here comes the tricky bit… Pin the black waist band  on the outside of your skirt and sew all the way round except the extra waist band at the end of strap (just don’t do anything yet)

to close the end of waist band fold it in half length way so that the right side of felt are touching:



turn inside out:

repeat process on the other end of waist band on the flapping bit but sew side and under:

now check that waist band is fitting you well. Again, and because I cut (no choice) the waist band and the stretchy grain of felt it was slightly too big so I had to dart on top of waist band and sew in place.

Add decorative felt buckle on the belt,  hand sew some pompoms on the green points  (I did not add a pompom tho the back green triangle for sitting comfortably),hand sew a hook to fasten the waist band and hand sew two red decorative button:

Et voila! you have a elf skirt, very in at the moment, practical for your every day tasks and warm for the cold winter that is coming!

Happy sewing everyone!




I’m a cotton headed ninny muggin!

Yes you would have guessed! It’s dress up time at school again and this time we have to dress up as elves… not sure why but I’m here to indulge and get creative for as little money as possible. Went online to see if I could get something cheap but either it was very tarty which is completely inappropriate for school or it was expensive. I went to Brighton to buy some felt and got creative with the boys.


Here is what you need to make three elf costumes:

2 m of red felt

1 m of green felt

50 cm of black felt

a sheet of yellowish felt

green pompom (but you can use red or gold)

about 4 m of green ric rac

red thread

green thread

black thread

sewing paraphernalia

3 red t-shirt

First grab those tees and lay them flat. lay a piece of paper wide enough to cover the neck, collar and shoulders:

mark with a pen the edge of the collar by feeling with your fingers (don’t worry about being precise as we are working with felt it is quite forgiving):

decide how long you want the green “leaves to hang” we decided it will be the length of the shoulders (depends on your size)

For a mall Tee the length was 3 1/4″ for a bigger one it was 4 ” etc… mark the same length all the way round, make our littl elves work by tracing and cutting:

divide the cut piece in 4 sections like so:

Mark crosses in each section to end up with this:

Cut around and now you have your front colerette pattern. repeat all those steps for the back but you don’t have to make one for the back if you don’t want to. repeat for all three tee-shirts.

Place the patterns on green felt pin and cut around:

insert a piece of cardboard inside the tee-shirts and stick the felt with fabric glue on the tees:

Press quite hard and let it dry.

Now trace on the black felt the buttons: use a 2 p coin to trace around and then cut, use the fabric glue to stick on the Tees. Three per tee is enough but you can add as much or little as you want.

now cut a 3 or 4 ” wide strip of black felt,position it on tee and cut to desired length, stick with fabric glue:

cut a rectangle of the width of the black strip and fold it in half, cut it in that way:

et voila! you now have three elf tees for very cheap!

I will post the felt elf skirt tutorial tomorrow!

See you then!

Vintage books

During half term we went for s stroll to one of my favourite National trust place: Nymans. They have a little hut with a wooden fire where they sell second hand books. I always have a little look and they most of the time haven’t got what I’m looking for. But this time however I found two great vintage dressmaking books, one from 1960 and another one from 1973.

I fell in love with this one just for the cover:

It was published for O level and the content is amazing. There’s so much information in such a little book. It is very precise and to the point. Some stitching I had never heard of and what was asked of the students was intense and time consuming. they most of the time assume you will sew by hand but as they say “you can use a sewing machine”.

The second book was just a I must have it kind of book even though I might never make any project from it. It is so passé it is hilarious!

The photos and pictures and really 70′s and some of the designs are quite sore to the eye. But I still love that book as they have some very interesting point about dressmaking.

One of my favourite page has to be that one:

It is so non PC no wonder feminism exploded. Some of the title were “getting to grips with your figure” followed by “what is your problem”… My problem?? hum… let’s move on

I think I might do this for my 9 and 7year olds:

And might make myself this exquisite quilted skirt:


I want to blog more!

But life gets in the way! This doesn’t mean I am not crafting or reading your lovely comments and emails. I feel bad. I have not replied to some of your comments and questions straight away even though I feel privileged that you are stopping by and taking time to read all this. But I will try and post more now that everything has calmed down a bit.

So first thing, we have moved home. A nice big house where everyone can have their own room! Yes, I now have a sewing room!!! whoo hoo!!! It is a summer house, it is in the garden, it has not yet been fully restored but it is all mine! I have a lot of space, electricity, heating, WI-FI. It’s amazing and cannot wait to start redecorating it. Photos of the inside to follow soon (hopefully as I depend on my husband’s good will for that one).

Because moving was stressful and time consuming, it was difficult to find time to create anything at all. But you know me, I cannot stay too long away from a sewing machine!

My friend bought me for my Thirtieth a great book called “Gerties new book for better sewing” and managed to make two garments so far.

Having done a bit of patchwork and quilting I wanted to investigate the dressmaking side of sewing. I am really enjoying it and find the challenge interesting even if I still find it scary to cut the fabric around the pattern!

zipped skirt

summer retro blouse

Going to Brighton to The Sewing Center, I found this amazing and unusual grey and yellow fabric and bought enough to make a cushion for my new living room and a matching lamp shade. The result is striking (even if I do say so myself!) and is going really well with the colour scheme.

We spent the summer (a full month) in San Francisco where my husband was working.We stayed in Livermore, a sweet little town on the outskirt of San Francisco. People were nice, the food was amazing, the weather was heaven, the clothes really cheap, the apartment were we stayed was idyllic. Let’s just say none of us wanted to come back.  When visiting the town center I was hoping to find a quilting/fabric shop and.. TA DA!!! I found the most exquisite little shop called “In between stitches”.

got so excited in there!

The ladies were very welcoming, helpful and chatty. The range of fabrics was astonishing, I had never seen anything like it! I was in HEAVEN!! I spent an hour the first time (yes I came back several times after that!) I was very sad to leave Livermore for that shop only!

trying to keep calm....

OMG I cannot contain myself!!

I bought a little bit of fabric but really wanted to buy it all. It is sooo cheap compare to the UK. The only thing stopping me was luggage space ( I bought so much clothes too, it was hard to close the suitcases!). I bought grey and yellow fabrics to make a quilt for my second living room:

I have drawn a plan of the quilt I would like to make:

I will post a tutorial for that one soon (but cannot promise too soon!)

I bought more fabrics on sales to make skirts and some more fat quarter but not sure what I’ll be doing with then yet!

I absolutely flashed on that one:

I have no idea what to do with it but just knew I had to get it!

I have a lot of projects I have planned to sew, I just need to get myself organised with work and family time. I have just finished redecorating my husband’s office and would like to make him a little framed cross stitch:

We are fans of the IT Crowds and my hubby’s a geek so thought it might look good on his office wall!

I also would like to finish all my cross stitch projects (3 on the go). I like some of Helen Tran’s designs, they look dainty and pretty.

The list is pretty endless really: finish some quilts that need to be sandwiched and quilted, make more skirts and blouse as I have bought the fabrics, sew with my son as he loves it and finish his table mat… just so many ideas and little time!

But what I really would like to do is blog more often. I love to do it, I love to sit down to write down my past projects and future ones and I love to see so many of you taking time to read my babbling!

Happy sewing everyone!