A flounce is a piece of fabric cut into a circle and sewn onto the hem of a skirt or dress. It creates an attractive subtle ruffle at the bottom of the skirt. It can dress up what is an otherwise plain skirt. You can make the flounce different lengths with a short flounce for a more ruffled look, and a longer flounce for a flowing look. The length of the skirt can vary too, from mini to floor length. You can also mix and match colors and patterns of the skirt and the flounce, making a look uniquely your own.
Things You'll Need
Measure yourself around your hips with the measuring tape. Measure from the waist to the length you want the skirt without the flounce.
Cut two rectangles out of the fabric with scissors. The width for each will be half your hip measurement plus 1-1/2 inches. The length of each will be the length of the skirt plus 1-1/2 inches.
Place one rectangle on top of the other, with the right sides facing each other. Sew the rectangles together on the sewing machine along the side seams with a 1/2-inch seam allowance.
Fold the top of the skirt over 1 inch, with the wrong sides facing each other. Sew the fold in place close to the bottom edge, creating a channel for the elastic. Leave a 1-1/2 inch opening at the back of the skirt.
Measure yourself around your waist. Cut a piece of elastic your waist measurement plus 1 inch.
Pin a safety pin to the end of the elastic. Slide the elastic into the opening in the back of the skirt, and around the channel you created. Remove the safety pin.
Overlap the elastic 1 inch and sew it together. Sew the opening on the skirt closed.
Fold the flounce fabric in half lengthwise with the right sides together. Fold it in half widthwise. The fabric will be folded into quarters, four layers thick. Pin the layers together to prevent any movement.
Measure the hem of the skirt all the way around. Subtract 1 inch from the measurement and divide by 6.28.
Measure out from the folded corner to the distance you determined in Step 2. Mark the fabric with the chalk. Repeat this several times around the corner in an arched pattern. Draw a line with the chalk connecting the points creating a quarter circle.
Measure from the same corner out the length you want the flounce. Add the number from Step 2 plus 1 inch for seam allowance. Mark the fabric with chalk. Repeat this several times creating another arch, this one large and around the first arch. Draw a line with the chalk connecting the point creating a larger quarter circle.
Cut along the curved lines with the scissors through all four layers of fabric. Unpin and unfold the circle. It should look like a large donut.
Fold the edge of the outer circle over 1/4 inch, wrong sides facing each other. Fold over again another 1/4 inch. Sew the hem in place on the sewing machine.
Pin the hem of the skirt to the inner circle of the flounce, with the right sides facing each other. Sew the skirt to the flounce on the sewing machine with a 1/2-inch seam allowance.
If the inner circle of the flounce stretches larger than the hem of the skirt, gather the flounce to the skirt and tuck the extra material as you sew.
References and Resources"Draping for Apparel Design"; Helen Joseph-Armstrong; 2000
"Designing Apparel through the Flat Pattern"; Ernestine Kopp; 1960
"Fairchild's Dictionary of Fashion"; Charlotte Calasibett; 1975