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Thread: Shortening long skirts into short skirts

  1. #1
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    Shortening long skirts into short skirts

    All:

    I am in the process of shortening long full knit skirts into short skirts for a friend of mine. Does anyone have any suggestions on an easy method of doing this? She wants them 23.5" from the waistline & try as I may it is not coming out even all around even though I have measured 23.5" all around. Any suggestions? I'm desperate. Mary C
    MaryC

  2. #2
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    I have hemmed my Mothers clothes a very long time. I have a [I call it a hem squirter]. It is a yardstick with chalk holder and a rubber squeezer to blow chalk on the skirt. Put it on the person. make her stand still while you go around her with the squirter putting a chalk line on the skirt. If it is knit, sew hem binding on the cut off skirt and turn it under. Sew very loosley on knit[hand sew]. Because she isn't straight up and down, it never will be straight unless she has it on when you mark it.

  3. #3
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    Shortening a long skirt.

    Quote Originally Posted by barny View Post
    I have hemmed my Mothers clothes a very long time. I have a
    [I call it a hem squirter]. It is a yardstick with chalk holder and a rubber squeezer to blow
    chalk on the skirt. Put it on the person. make her stand still while you go around her with
    the squirter putting a chalk line on the skirt. If it is knit, sew hem binding on the cut off
    skirt and turn it under. Sew very loosley on knit[hand sew]. Because she isn't straight
    up and down, it never will be straight unless she has it on when you mark it.
    --------------------------------------------------------
    My little hillbilly Grandma raised me and I think she was a very smart lady. She showed me
    how to shorten or hem my own skirt. I tape a piece of chalk to the edge of a table or chair,
    letting the end of it stick out. Then I walk up to it and let the chalk rub a spot here and there
    and here and turn, etc. Then I can remove it and connect the dots, and each dot will be where
    I am and not where anyone else goes in or out. Then I can measure how long or short I want
    it to be, pin and check, then sew and press. Works for pants when you want to make them
    into shorts of whatever kind, walking shorts, short shorts (Gads, I NEVER did wear any of
    those things, feed sack dresses was what I wore.)

  4. #4
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    Measure 23.5 inches from the waistline of the skirt and mark a spot to identify the new hem line. Next measure the amount of fabric that will need to be removed from the bottom of the skirt in order to get the desired length. Reduce this number by 1 1/4 inches to determine the amount of fabric you would need to cut off the bottom to allow for a 1 inch hem with 1/4 inch of fabric to be turned under. This should make the skirt hang level . For example, if you need to shorten the skirt by a total of 5 inches, you would only need to cut off 3 3/4 inches from the bottom of the skirt and turn up a 1 1/4 inches for the hem. Hope this works for you.
    Fabric is like money, no matter how much you have it's never enough.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ramona Byrd View Post
    --------------------------------------------------------
    My little hillbilly Grandma raised me and I thi:-)nk she was a very smart lady. She showed me
    how to shorten or hem my own skirt. I tape a piece of chalk to the edge of a table or chair,
    letting the end of it stick out. Then I walk up to it and let the chalk rub a spot here and there
    and here and turn, etc. Then I can remove it and connect the dots, and each dot will be where
    I am and not where anyone else goes in or out. Then I can measure how long or short I want
    it to be, pin and check, then sew and press. Works for pants when you want to make them
    into shorts of whatever kind, walking shorts, short shorts (Gads, I NEVER did wear any of
    those things, feed sack dresses was what I wore.)
    That ia a terrific idea!!! Love it!! Hate having to find someone to pin or mark and hope they get it right! Granny was brillant!

  6. #6
    Moderator QuiltnNan's Avatar
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    hemming rarely works out just by measuring the length all around. the length is changed by body curves, etc. it is best to have the owner try it on and measure the hem distance from the floor
    Nancy in western NY
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    T is it True? H is it Helpful? I is it Inspiring? N is it Necessary? K is it Kind?



  7. #7
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    I would say do as Barny suggests and have her try on each piece. It will hang/measure differently based on her shape and the fabric content. And the hemmer she refers to is a godsend! If you don't have the hemmer, have her point to a spot on the front of the skirt then measure up from the floor to get it even all the way around.

    If she's not willing to do that then do as Betty62 suggests. Good luck. Sounds like a nightmare - and I have to hem just about every article of clothing I buy!

  8. #8
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    Thank you for your suggestion on my shortening dilemma. I will try my best using your suggestions & see what happens.

    Hope you all have a very Happy Overeating Holiday this Thursday.
    Mary C
    MaryC

  9. #9
    Power Poster Prism99's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by QuiltnNan View Post
    hemming rarely works out just by measuring the length all around. the length is changed by body curves, etc. it is best to have the owner try it on and measure the hem distance from the floor
    Totally agree! Unless she has a huge tummy, a skirt will ordinarily need to measure less in length in the front than in the back, and the sides will be different too.

    Edit: I should add that I think she threw you off by giving a measurement from the waistline. You really need to measure from the floor, or at least from the existing hemline! Maybe find out the current measurement of each skirt from her waist. If a skirt is currently 30" from the waist, then you would know to shorten that skirt by 6.5" all around. Each skirt is likely to measure a different current distance from the waist, though, so you would need to find out each individual skirt's current distance from the waist to use this method.
    Last edited by Prism99; 11-21-2012 at 10:29 AM.

  10. #10
    Senior Member Pat M.'s Avatar
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    The skirt has to be on the person, she may have a high hip or butt that is flat, etc. It all makes a difference, so put the skirt on her and measure.

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