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I have a really simple question, but it is something I cannot remember and I want to know other people’s opinion.

When making a simple skirt, should the CF or CB length be the same length as the side seams?

for instance, if you want the skirt to be 18" long, should this measurement be 18" at CF and at the side seams, and then you curve it to match? Or do you allow the side seams to be slightly longer? I Have noticed on some blocks that the bottom is square, and therefore the side seam measurment tends to be longer. is this just for block reasons..


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  • 985f0154fdefdf284531d76b36fbffee7a42548e_large

    May 14, 2012, 08.39 AMby katexxxxxx

    If the side seam curves over the hip, it WILL be longer. CB and CF seams tend to be straight on the block.

    18" isn’t a skirt! It’s a pelmet! ;)

    My skirts are all 34+ long… :D

  • Wedding_large

    May 14, 2012, 02.57 PMby leashbean

    thanks! I knew that if it went over the hips it would need some room to compensate, but I can’t find any information in my books stating how much so it got me thinking.

    As I become a woman I am finding that 18" is not sufficient to cover my bum comfortable, so maybe its time to add a few inches. hahahaahah. i am pretty sure 34 sounds like enough covered for me.

    1 Reply
    • 985f0154fdefdf284531d76b36fbffee7a42548e_large

      May 15, 2012, 05.47 PMby katexxxxxx

      I like my skirts LOOOOONG! :D

  • Missing

    May 24, 2012, 04.15 PMby mickeygirl

    Take a tape measure and hang it down over your center front and center back and see the length. Usually poeple make their basic skirt pattern to their knee length since that is an easy landmark to use. Then to make a skirt longer or shorter they add or take off from the hem.

    You’re right that you need the CF and CB to be at square with the hem. The side hem might curve up depending on the fit/style of the skirt. You usually walk/measure the front and back side seams to make sure that the seam is going to make.

    Some women are larger in the stomach or bum so they need more room over the CF or CB. Or some have those hippy curves. Everyone is different -

    I have a book “How to make Sewing patterns” by Don McCunn. It is a very good book because it shows you how to make sewing patterns to fit real people not some stuffed dummy. He says to make the skirt test from fabric and then try it on the put in the waist darts – this makes sense because most of the other books I have will tell you how much dart and where by some formula which is not my body.

  • Missing

    Jun 9, 2012, 08.43 AMby kritika kapoor

    Nicely described here and i really got it as a good one here. According to good measurements i will try the same and will craft the same easily.

  • Missing

    Aug 3, 2012, 09.47 AMby michaelG4369

    I found that replies helpful and will try in future. Post is also appreciable.

  • Missing

    May 26, 2016, 09.52 PMby Catherine Carriere

    Hey, I think I’m late to the party but also make sure that you are adding the distance above the hip line at the waist on the side seam, the hem stays square. The CB, CF and SS will not necessarily all be the same lengths. In Jack Hanford’s Professional Pattern Making For Designers its SS length is 1/8" longer than CF and the CB is 1/8" shorter for reference.

    18" is reasonable for a mini, 22-25" is around knee length.

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