DIY Maxi Skirt Pattern

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Are you looking for the perfect skirt? This free maxi skirt pattern is cute, comfortable, and such a nice project for a summer outfit.

Are you looking for the perfect skirt? This free maxi skirt pattern is cute, comfortable, and such a nice project for a summer outfit. #diy #sewing #sewyourown #skirt #maxiskirt #freepattern

DIY Maxi Skirt

Why does it feel like the older I get, the harder it is to find clothing that looks good, is comfortable, not that expensive, and doesn’t show everything. The last few times that I’ve been in a regular department store I couldn’t even find a single thing that I would wear. Is it that hard for a clothing designer to make something that can be comfortably worn around the house and around the garden as well? Alright….maybe that’s not what they are going for, but that’s what I need!

Not to mention the fact that I need clothes that are functional! Aka: I need to be able to bend over and reach and not look completely inappropriate.

So I’ve decided while I wait for this fictional functional, inexpensive, comfortable clothing to appear in the stores, I will just go ahead and make my own clothes that fit me perfectly and will work for what I need them to do.

I was a little shocked to try on my summer clothes I’d put away for this year to discover that practically nothing fit (in a good way…. being gluten free has been so healthy for me!), which means….I need new summer clothes. I come from the land of dry heat and I’ve been told that in our new area the summers are quite awful. Humid and HOT. So I’m pretty sure I will need some nice cool clothing since we do not have air conditioning in the farmhouse. I really like wearing a nice tank top and skirts so I decided my first summer clothing project was going to be to make some skirts!

Below you will find a super easy tutorial on how to make a DIY Fold-over Maxi Skirt. I think these are so cute and perfect for most of the year! I can see this being something I will wear in the spring, summer, and fall. I love it!

—Before you get started, check out the 7 Simple Tools Every Beginning Seamstress Must Have.

DIY Maxi Skirt Pattern

What You Need:

  • Knit Fabric (Get it from
  • Scissors/Needle/Thread
  • Sewing Machine

I found a cute maxi skirt on a clearance rack so I based my pattern off of it. You will just do your own measurements based on your body to make yours fit perfectly!

How To Shop for Frugal Clothing at Consignment Stores


DIY Maxi Skirt

First, we will cut 4 pieces of fabric. Begin by taking your waist measurement, dividing it in half. This is the width of the smaller piece, the length is 12 inches (for all sizes). Cut 2 smaller pieces.

The take the measurement from your waist to your feet. (Add an inch is you plan to sew a hem) Cut 2 of these larger pieces in a shape like that above where the width of the top of the shape is the width of the smaller piece and the width of the bottom is between 30 and 40 inches depending on how full you want the skirt to be. I cut mine 30 inches wide since I wanted it to be flowy but not pleated.

DIY Maxi Skirt

With both pieces, place the pieces with the wrong sides out and stitch using a straight stitch on both sides.

DIY Maxi Skirt

Take the waistband piece and turn it right side out, fold it in half.

DIY Maxi Skirt

Flip the skirt so the right side is out. Take the raw edge of the waistband and stitch it on to the top of the skirt.

DIY Maxi Skirt

The finished top of the skirt should look like this…minus the wrinkles of course, my stuff is always wrinkly, I can’t wait for a regular size washing machine!

Finally, you can either choose to hem the bottom of the skirt or just leave it. Knit fabrics shouldn’t fray so you can save a step by not hemming if you just plan on wearing these around the house.

A few tips….make sure to use a nice, stretchy cotton knit. (But not with too much stretch!) The polyester knits are cheaper but totally uncomfortable and not stretchy. After making a few of these my favorite blend was 95% with 5% lycra. Also, make sure to use sewing needles that are made for knit fabrics (ballpoint needles).

–Looking for a different type of skirt? Make Your Own Skirt Pattern

DIY Maxi Skirt

As for the fabric…I found really boring patterns at my local fabric store, not to mention the knit fabric was pretty expensive! I’ve been shopping on I really like that they have free shipping over $35 and I plan to take advantage of the frequent shopper program. 😉

–Here are some more ideas for Where to Buy Cheap Fabric.

Isn’t this super cute? To wear, just fold down the waistband to the desired area. You could even make these half the length if you wanted to do some knee-length skirts for a different style. These are so easy to make and great for all year round. Pair it with a tank top in the summer, or long sleeves and a matching scarf in the winter.

If you enjoyed this DIY Skirt Tutorial, you may enjoy these posts as well:

Do you make your own clothing?


This Maxi Skirt Pattern was originally published on Little House Living in March 2014. It has been updated as of May 2020.

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  1. How timely. I was just lamenting about wanting a maxi skirt. Thank you for posting this tutorial.

  2. Great tutorial–I’ve been stashing some knits away recently too and found some SUPER prices at If you haven’t shopped there much before, keep an eye on your packages–they usually include a coupon for your next purchase in all the flyer junk in the box as well.

  3. Hey Merissa, first i love your blog. Check out your local thrift store for mans knit shirts. If you lay them flat and cut straight across, from arm pit to arm pit. You do a fold over waist band and insert elastic. Super easy, super cute. You can do this with dress shirts too. Our local shop sells all their clothing for a dollar. I got this idea off all the re-purpose sewing sites. Hope this helps you to be thrifty. I love your skirt.

  4. Very pretty! Thanks for sharing! When it get hot and humid, you’ll love those trees! There’s nothing like taking a break in their shade with a glass of iced tea!

  5. Cute skirt and you do look healthier! It does not even help to get older and wear larger sizes when shopping for clothes. I don’t want to go sleeveless at 53 but it seems that nothing in the summer has sleeves.

  6. I love your web page and how you are helping young people do for themselves. That said, I noticed that you did not iron your fabric before you began your skirt making. Pressing out wrinkles helps you get clean straight lines easier and should be added to your process. Also pressing all seams after they are sewn is a good addition to your sewing practices. I am a seamstress of almost 40 yearts and thought you could use a little tip.
    Keep up the great work! I am going to be making my own laundry soap thanks to you.

  7. Super cute! And it does look very easy. Often in thrift shop digging around, I come across cute knit fabric, but I never get it because I don’t know what to do with it. Now I do though.:)

  8. I love the ease of the pattern you shared. It is so much fun to find the material on clearance and turn it into something both useful and pretty. I love my maxi skirts but I have never made any. I have fashioned some infintiy scarves out of the clearance material bin, though.

    Thanks for sharing!

  9. I just love your skirt. I am a rather large round the belly and tall lady who doesn’t wear skirts YET but your directions make it seem a no brainer. Now being in the uklaces me at a huge disadvantage we don’t have such cute fabrics so cheap. Today I bought 10inches of fabric 45inches wide and cost me ten pounds d it is a lovely fabric but I am only making bibs imagine making a tent to fit

  10. Thank you for a new skirt pattern.
    I have made several skirts. Hip measurement plus 6 inches. and then measure waist to length and add hem about 2 for woven fabric or 1 for knit. Then add the fold over for elastic casing on the top. You have a rectangle, with only three seams. The back, the top and the hem. Put the elastic around you waist and subtract about an inch, insert it into the casing and sew the elastic together, and finish the seam where the casing goes and there you go.
    I’m going to try the new pattern as soon as I get some knit fabric. I also like GREAT SERVICE. Check out sew4home for some free patterns and how to sews for that new house of yours.

  11. Enjoyed your pattern. I came from Nebraska. It gets very hot and humid there. In the real heat of the summer it is even cooler if you use cotton material for the skirts. It will breath better and be lighter in July and August. Now that you have made the knit material skirt try some in lighter colors of cotton too. It will be even cooler for you in the summer.

  12. I love this skirt, it is super cute and easy to make. With 8 girls I really need to get the sewing machine out!

  13. I do enjoy reading your blogs and wish you the best of luck in your new home. I am sure your farmhouse likes the idea that someone loves it again. Thank you for sharing your skirt pattern with the rest of us. I do sew quite a bit and make all of my husband’s denim work shirts and most of my own clothing as well.

  14. Cute skirt, I live in the hot and humid south so I’ll be sew a few of these this summer and probably all year long!! Love your blog.

  15. I am SOOOO excited about this. I am just learning to sew (again). I haven’t really sewn since high school home economics class. I received a sewing machine for Christmas and can’t wait to try this! I too can’t find appropriate clothing in the stores ( for many of the same reasons as you mentioned above ) and also because all of the maxi-skirts I have tried are for people who are 15 inches taller than I am. I also can’t bring myself to spend $40 or more on a product that I can make for under $10.

    Thanks so much for your inspiration. I am going to start looking for fabric today!!!

  16. I am looking for a pattern – I want to make skirts from old jeans but use thinner fabric (knit or cotton) to contrast and give the skirt a bit of a flare – I’ve not been able to find where I have seen the skirt – thoughts? Thanks

    1. Hi Kath –
      This is the pattern I’ve used for years. It’s a fairly simple way to make an old pair of jeans into a cute flared skirt. Bonus: POCKETS!
      I hope this is what you were looking for!

  17. Just an idea. When my daughter was in High School she was so hard to buy for. So I took my t shirt pattern made it way longer. Now she had the cutest dress then I mad a simple belt. It was too cute. Thank you for sharing all your wonderful ideas. I live in an R V. I know your pain. Lol

  18. Nice idea, but needs pockets. My major complaint about most women’s clothing in a store is the lack of pockets. I swear the only pants I own with decent pockets are my hunting pants, and those were really expensive.
    I believe this could be handled by doing a pocket in the side seam. Shouldn’t be too hard.

  19. I love long skirts, especially the look of them. However, from experience I can tell you that the material you make the skirt from can make a huge difference. The wrong material can block air flow and make your skirt into an oven. Which might be great in the winter, but horrible in summer. Further, if you are sitting, and it’s making you sweat, it can stain your skirt. Not a great look. So a light breathable cotton is your best bet. Also, a light color to reflect the light off.

  20. I have never sewed anything but got a small machine and would love to try this about how much fabric will I need to buy? I an 5’4 120 lbs wear a small bottom size 2-4 any help would be great thanks for your time

  21. Thank you for the very thorough tutorial! I’m exited to make myself a skirt now! I have plenty of fabric stashed for this project, but never had the guts to try it. I will now! 🙂

  22. Thank you for sharing this! I haven’t sewed much lately, but this would be perfect for me. Being long legged, I can’t ever find maxi’s long enough for me!

  23. Fabulous pattern, thanks. I need to make a few myself. I am VERY short, so I have never found a maxi shirt that didn’t sweep the floor too.

  24. Thank you for the tutorial. This looks easy enough. I will have to show it to my daughter.

    I found you over at Small Victories Sunday Linkup. I’ll be back to visit!

  25. Thanks so much for sharing this! I desperately needed an easy project to get into sewing, and this sounds perfect! I’m pregnant now too, and the only way I think I will survive the long hot summer is with maxi skirts. I’m 6′ and have the hardest time finding clothes to fit. I’m hoping this project will give me some confidence to make more clothes for myself and my littles!

  26. Okay. I am probably struggling way too hard with this, but I want to make sure I’m doing the right thing before I start cutting this beautiful fabric I bought.

    In the picture, it appears that you cut your pieces along the fold (so when you unfold it, you’d have a symmetrical shape). But you’re saying to cut two pieces with the width at the top being half of your waist measurement. Is that the measurement when it’s unfolded? So if I’m cutting along the fold, it would be one quarter of my waist measurement? Or are they not cut along the fold at all and I’m misreading the picture? I’m just trying to make the picture, your description, and my (admittedly small) knowledge of sewing mesh in my brain so that things make sense before I go butchering some fabric.

  27. I found this at the perfect time! My daughter and I wear a LOT of skirts and I just began to search for simple skirt patterns for a maxi-length knit skirt. I can’t wait to do this. Thanks for the post!