The 1 Hour DIY Maxi Dress

Sew Sisters

Today’s post is special for my new sewists!¬† If you’ve been struggling to get your start with learning how to read sewing patterns or you may get frustrated with all of the steps in preparation… maybe it’s time to try something a bit easier!

This has to be the easiest dress I’ve ever made.

This DIY maxi dress is something I made this time last year and at the time, I felt like it was just too simple to add to the blog.

Not that all sewing projects have to take hours to prep and construct… and let’s face it, not all DIY projects are extravagant with massive amounts of details.

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The Flirty Skirt

Still saturated in my infatuation with pleats, I sought out to do switch this up and do something different – a gathered mini-circle skirt.

Everything was working out as planned and then…. I went to cut out the zipper space vs adding a zipper to the back center seam aaannnnddddd…… totally eff’d messed up what started off as a quick & easy¬†skirt.¬† (gathering is so much easier, less time consuming than pleating)

Quick Tip:¬† Don’t cut into your thread, after you’ve gathered your material!!!¬† Cutting the thread completely loses all of you work AND you will need to improvise!

After about 2 or 3 attempts to re-create my gathers on either side of my zipper (post zipper install), I realized that where I placed my zipper was OFF center and on top of that… CROOKED!!!!

I mean, how many ways can you eff mess up something SO simple?  Seriously, this is a basic skirt.  No pattern needed.  Just cut, baste and go!

Completely frustrated and ready to finish, I decided to go to my good ole pleats!¬† This time, instead of doing box pleats, I decided to do very simple ‘cascading’, or knife¬†pleats.¬† (I learned the official name of this style pleat after I¬†finished this skirt.)¬†

The Flirty Skirt

Here are the skirt details, if you’re interested in making something similar:

  • Fabric was cut 72′ x 19′.
  • Added side seam pockets, using V8909 pocket pattern.
  • Added 3′ wide waistband with zipper down center seam; closed with a hook & eye.
  • Rolled a 1′ hem.

The Flirty Skirt

I love my flirty skirt!!¬† The pleats give so much¬†VOLUME and the length is versatile and…. well, flirty!¬† Sometimes, when you make mistakes, things actually end up even better than what you¬†intended in the first place!

The Flirty Skirt

The Flirty Skirt

This is a perfect look for summer – pair it with your favorite pair of sandals, or dress it up with a plain tank/blazer combo with some pumps! ūüôā

Clearly, pleats is my go-to style this Spring.¬† What’s your go to style?


DIY Cigarette Pants

One of my favorite era’s in time is the 1960’s.¬† I love the style and the music especially!

A small part of my soul feels like I was born during the Motown era… I grew up listening to the music¬†– Long road trips to visit family, Motown 25 on VHS rings a bell…. Glimpses of my childhood memories definitely include either listening to or watching stories or¬†documentaries of the groups and the history of Motown and music during this time.

My Motown Crush

Even though I’m an 80’s baby, I had a thang for¬†Eddie Kendricks of The Temptations!!¬† I’ve always loved the way he looked in those pants & his hair parted to the side!!!!¬† He was smooth…


Before writing this post, I started researching ‘cigarette pants’ and found out that women were actually wearing these pants in the ’50’s.¬† I would venture to say that Audrey Hepburn is the one who broke the mole during this time.

See the Look

AudreyHepburn  Audrey HepburnMaryTylerMoore

Mary Tyler Moore

DVF Cig Pants

DVF’s version of modern day cigarette pants

(similar pair found here, $285.)

Sew the Look

For these pants, I wanted something to make a statement.  I am really loving prints this season, so I went with this knit suiting material (minimal stretch), also seen here.

I self-drafted my pants, using a pair of my skinny jeans.  I made the following adjustments:

  • Added a 9′ zipper (faced)¬†to the back, center seam.
  • Removed 5′ from the length of my pant legs.
  • Added 9′ side¬†zippers to each pant leg.
  • Added a 3′ waistband with 2 hook & eyes.

DIY Cigarette Pants


DIY Cigarette Pants

I’ve lost some inches in my waist since I first started these pants (Insert about a month’s time), so the waist is a bit big.¬† Luckily, my thighs are still in tact to keep everything else in place and in serious need of seam ripping & adjusting.¬† Truth be told, I’m still working on my closures.¬† Using hook & eyes is an art!¬† But I’m getting used to it ūüôā

DIY Cigarette Pants

What I’m Wearing:

Top –¬†DIY

Pants –¬†DIY

Shoes – Aldo (old), similar here

So, now it’s your turn!¬† Are you inspired by a specific era in time?