The bottom panel will be 1" longer than the top two to allow for a 1.5" hem allowance.
To determine the width of each panel, take your hip measurement and add 2-4" for ease and seam allowance, depending on how tight you want the skirt to sit on your hips. I only added 2" to my hip measurement because my fabric was very slinky had quite a bit of stretch. If your fabric has less stretch, you may want to add up to 4" for ease and seam allowance. That will be the width of your top panel.
For the middle panel, add 10" to the width of the top panel, and add another 10" in width to the middle panel for the bottom panel (bottom panel will be 20" wider than top panel). If the width of your bottom panel needs to be greater than 60", just divide the width you need by two, add 1" to that measurement for seam allowance, and cut two pieces that size. Right sides together, stitch the two pieces together along one short end of each, and treat it as one piece from here on.
Note: This skirt is VERY forgiving, so if your fabric allows to only add 8" in width for each panel without piecing the bottom panel, or you want a more flared skirt and want to add a couple extra inches, go ahead. This is one of those few projects where you can alter the measurements a bit (excluding the length, of course!) and your skirt will still turn out great.
Here's an example of what a person with 38" hips and a desired length of 36" from the bottom of the waistband would need to cut for the panels:
Top Panel: 13"x40"
Middle Panel: 13"x50"
Bottom Panel: 14"x60"
A Few Notes Before You Begin:
- All Seam allowances are 1/2".
- When sewing with knits, always use a ballpoint needle.
- If not using a serger, set your stitch length a bit longer than normal (2.5-3 on my machine), or use a very narrow zig zag stitch with a medium stitch length. A lot of machines also have a "stretch stitch" setting which also works great.
Congratulations On Your Finished Maxi Skirt! You are done!
Be sure to show off your skirts in the Sew Much Ado Flickr Group!