The Handkerchief Hem Bandana Skirt

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I’ve had this skirt in my head for a while now but finally got around to making one as part of my daughter’s 2nd birthday outfit.  It’s a fun, easy project that looks adorable on.  Portions of the math for this skirt draw on the basics for a circle skirt pattern.  There are several tutes for this already on the Internet but my favorite comes from Made.


What You’ll Need:
2 Large Bandanas (Hobby Lobby sells them in a lot of fun patterns)
1″ to 2″ elastic (you’ll need one more inch than your model’s waist measurement.  So if the waist is 22″ you’ll need 23″ of elastic)

We’re going to create a pattern to cut a circle out of the middle based on your model’s waist measurement.  Actually we’re going to create 1/4 of a pattern.  Take the waist measurement and add 2-3 inches.  This will make the fabric “ruffle” a bit when we sew it on the elastic.  Divide by 6.28 to find the radius.  For my daughter it was 3.9 so I rounded up to 4″.

Now take a sheet of paper and measure 4″ (or whatever your number is) from the corner in several places a make a dot.  Connect the dots to create the 1/4 circle.  See pics below for a better explanation.


Cut out the inner portion.

Fold your bandana in fourths (fold in half and then in half again).  From the middle portion, lay your pattern over it and cut out the center.  Do this with both bandanas.
Skirt3 Skirt4
Lay your pieces out as seen below.  Sorry about the blurry picture!


Pin generously and then serge or zig zag the pieces together around the circle.
I prepared my elastic waistband as in the Made circle skirt tute.  It ends up looking like this:
Skirt7   Skirt8
Pin skirt just inside the bottom edge of the elastic about 1/4 to 1/2 inch.  Pin as evenly as you can.  The fabric will bunch since you’ll stretch as you sew the skirt to the elastic.  It will look something like this after pinning:

Sew together, stretching as you good so that the elastic is the same length as the fabric.

And that’s it!  No hemming thanks to using bandanas! :)
Skirt15Update, June 2012: I recently saw the Malory @ Snips and Spice had made a similar skirt last year.  Great minds think alike! :)  Please be sure to check out her version as well!

As seen on

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About By Dawn Nicole

Dawn is the DIY & Lifestyle blogger/Graphic Designer behind By Dawn Nicole. She is a mom of 3 who believes in "throwing kindness around like confetti". While Dawn loves all things creative, she has a passion for hand-lettered typography. A clean-eating foodie who loves cooking as much as a a good long outdoor run, she believes in balance and rarely lets a day go by without dark chocolate and over-caffeinating. She spent one year on the Silhouette Design Team and is also a contributor to Capturing Joy with Kristen Duke,and The Pinning Mama .


  1. Oh my goodness, that is soooooo cute and so simple!! I want to make a bunch of them now. Thank you so much for the great idea and tutorial!


  2. Oh gosh, how adorable is this, and your little model is such a doll! I’d be so pumped if you’d come and link this (and any other projects you’d like to show off) to the Head to Head Showdown, going on right now at ~Jen

  3. Thanks, Jen! I popped over and linked up today (and became a follower via GFC!) :)

  4. What a cute idea! Love your blog, thank you for sharing your talents!!

  5. What a cute idea! I love your blog, thanks for sharing your talents!!

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