There is a super fun new addition to the updated Kelly skirt! Kelly Curve, Sizes 14-34, has the option of the fitted waistband, or an elastic back waistband, and today we are going to go over that elastic back option! This option provides an even better fit and flexibility.
And if you fall in the 0-20 size range pattern, don’t worry! That size-range may only include the fitted waistband in the pattern, but we will show you how to hack it into the elastic waistband yourself if you like that option!
This is kind of a long one, so let’s dive in…
HACKING FITTED WAISTBAND TO ELASTIC WAISTBAND
First, let’s go over how to create your own elastic back waistband pattern piece, if you are not using the new Kelly Curve pattern,
We are going to start with making the back waistband pattern piece.
You will need the original fitted waistband pattern piece and the back skirt pattern piece for measurements.
Measure the width of your back skirt pattern piece. This measurement will also be the width of your back waistband pattern piece.
Now measure the height of the fitted waistband pattern piece. This will also be the height of your new elastic back waistband pattern piece.
So your new ‘elastic waistband Back‘ pattern piece is the width of your back skirt pattern piece (as you can see here), and the height of the original waistband pattern piece.
This new ‘elastic waistband Back‘ pattern piece will be cut on the fold.
Now to create your ‘elastic waistband Front‘ pattern piece. There are two ways to do this.
Method 1: Divide your waist measurement by 4 and add 6 cm (2 3/8″) for seam allowance and placket. This is the width of the ‘front waistband’. This method is a bit more generic way to do it than the next method but works if you would like to go this route.
Method 2: Once you have your new ‘elastic waistband back’ pattern piece constructed, subtract 10.5 cm (4 1/8″) from that width to find the width of your ‘elastic waistband front’. This method is more specific to the Kelly skirt, and a bit easier. It is also the method I used above, as you can see.
The height is the same as the back waistband pattern piece. You will need to cut 2 of these from your fabric.
Now we can move on with construction, whether you are using the Curve pattern pieces or your own hacked pattern pieces…
You will have three waistband pieces cut out of fabric – two front waistband pieces and one back waistband piece cut on the fold.
Apply lightweight fusible interfacing to the two front pattern pieces only.
Optional: Marking Elastic Stitch Lines
These next few steps are not necessary. But will help later on when it is time to stitch over your elastic.
Fold your back waistband in half and press to the crease.
Using tailor’s chalk, mark two stitch lines…
One line is 3/4″ from the crease/fold.
And the other line is 3/4″ from the seam/ seam allowance (which is 5/8″).
Place the ‘Waistband Front’ pieces and ‘Waistband Back’ right sides together so that the side seams are aligned. Sew along the side seams 5/8” (1.5cm) from the raw edge.
Press the seams open.
Fold 1/2” (1.3cm) inwards, along one of the long edges and press flat.
Lay your skirt down and open, so the right side of the fabric is facing up.
*** Remember – for this version, you will not have done any gathers or pleats along the back skirt. Only on the front skirt pieces.
Pin the raw edge of the waistband to the top of the skirt with right sides together, so that 5/8” (1.5cm) of the waistband sticks out beyond the placket/edge of the skirt.
If you are doing the gathered version along the front, now is the time to adjust your gathers so it lines up with your waistband.
Here you can see how the waistband extends beyond the skirt on either side by 5/8″.
Sew 5/8” (1.5cm) from the raw edge along the top of the skirt.
Press the seam upwards towards the waistband.
Cut your 2″ wide elastic piece.
If you are using Kelly Curve, use the provided chart for the suggested elastic length.
If you are making a hacked version, you can estimate your elastic length by measuring your back waist. Go a little longer if you are unsure – you can always adjust the elastic length and fit later on.
Starting at the left side seam, place the elastic on the wrong side of the waistband 1/4” (6mm) above the waist
seam, and so that the elastic extends 1/2” (1.3cm) past the left waistband side seam. Pin in place.
Here you can see the placement. The red dashes are the seams. About 1/4″ above the waist seam, and 1/2″ or so beyond the waistband side seam.
From the right side of the garment, ‘stitch in the ditch’ right in the waistband side seam, so that you are stitching through the elastic on the wrong side.
Attach a safety pin to the remaining edge of elastic – this will be used to thread the elastic through the right waistband at a later stage.
Now turn your skirt back over she the right side of the fabric is facing up.
Fold the waistband in half with right sides together, and match up the folded edge of the waistband with the waist seam.
Sew 5/8” (1.5cm) from the raw edge along the waistband center front. Be very careful not to catch the placket front in your sewing.
Repeat for the other side.
Clip the corners of the seam allowances.
Turn the waistband the right way round and press. Make sure you use a pointing tool to make the top corner of the waistband nice and square.
This is from the inside of the skirt. You can see how the folded edge of the waistband covers the seam allowance of the waist seam.
Starting at the left skirt front (with the wrong side of the fabric facing you, it will be your right side), pin the waistband to the seam allowance on the inside of the skirt.
Pin along the left skirt front and back skirt ending about 1” (2.5cm) before the right skirt side seam.
Now from the right side / outside of the skirt, carefully topstitch 1/8″ (3mm) from the seam edge on the waistband, to enclose the waistband on the inside. Make sure that you do not catch the elastic in any of your stitches.
Only topstitch the portion you currently have pinned, from the left front skirt up to 1″ away from the right side seam.
It is a little difficult to see here, but the topstitching is 1/8″ away from the seam on the waistband from the right side, and catches the inside of the waistband on the inside.
Now feel through the fabric for that safety pin attached to the elastic. Use your fingers to guide the safety pin and elastic through the rest of the back waistband until you reach the right side seam.
When you reach the side seam extend the elastic 1/2″ (1.3cm) past the side seam seamline, and 1/4″ above the waist seam, just like you did on the left side. And pin in place.
*** Now is a good time to try the skirt on around your waist to check the fit. If your skirt feels too loose, you can pull the elastic through more and trim it before pinning it at the side seam.
Stich through the elastic right at the waistband side seam. Again, this is best to do from the right side of the skirt so that the stitching is disguised in the side seam.
Now continue pinning the last section of the waistband to the right skirt at the waist seam.
Just like you just did with the other portion, topstitch 1/8″ (3mm) from the seam edge on the outside of the right skirt front to enclose the rest of the waistband.
Stretch the waistband to it’s maximum a few times to evenly distribute the elastic and waistband fabric.
Now we need to stitch through the elastic. This is where those optional guidelines you may have drawn earlier will come in handy.
Sew 3/4″ (2cm) from the top edge of the waistband through the waistband and elastic using a long straight stitch, stretching the waistband as you sew, so that the elastic and waistband fabric lay flat.
Then sew 3/4” (2cm) from the waist seam through the waistband exactly the same way.
Remember, you’re only sewing these stitches through the elastic along the back waistband, from side seam to side seam. The front waistbands are flat.
That’s it! Your elastic back waistband is done!
LOOKING FOR MORE KELLY POSTS?
Here’s the full list of Kelly Tutorials:
- Sewalong: Pockets and Side Seams
- Sewalong: Placket
- Sewalong: Pleats
- Sewalong: Gathers
- Sewalong: Waistband
- Sewalong: Elastic Back Waistband (this post!)
- Sewalong: Buttonholes and Buttons
- Sewalong: Hem
- Hack: Closed Ruffle Tier Hem