Velvet half circle skirt

Hello readers! It has been a long time between posts. The last couple of months I have been busy with my final exam and assessments. Just under a month now until I will be a qualified dentist! I was finally able to use my sewing machine guilt free, just last week, and have started on a few projects. In the meantime, today I am posting up a past project.


You may recall seeing this skirt in my first project post, paired in an outfit with the upcycled wrap crop top! The fabric was bought from my local op-shop. It was my first time using velvet fabric and I learned a couple of lessons from this project.

I decided to do a high-waisted half circle design with an invisible zip. I scoured the craft section of my favourite op-shops for a matching invisible zipper, but was unsuccessful and ended up buying one from Spotlight.

There are plenty of tutorials online to help figure out the calculations for measurements using π (ah geometry, I haven’t used you since high school)Half-Circle-Skirt-Step1. The fabric is folded in half and a quarter of a circle is traced and cut out like in the image on the right. (image from this blog, which also has a good tutorial) The fabric fold is at the centre front in the image.

The waistband was a long rectangle the length of my waist measurement plus a few centimetres extra just in case. Looking back, it is at this point I would have placed interfacing on the waistband to give it more form. That was lesson number one learned from this project.

I sewed the pieces together: waistband and skirt right sides together, sew in the invisible zipper and the rest of the centre back seam, fold over the waistband inwards and sew, hem.


I was very happy with the end product. It is pretty straightforward and this is definitely a project I would recommend to a novice sewer.

The second lesson I learned after completing this project was about how velvet fabric has ‘direction’ otherwise known as the ‘nap’, which you can feel with your hands. When you run your hand over the fabric one way it feels smooth to touch and in the opposite direction the texture is more rough. I made sure to cut the fabric in the direction I wanted, but the nature of the half circle skirt meant that the nap direction would not be the same all around the skirt when worn as the circle skirt in cut in one piece. This is only noticeable from the back where the two centre seams meet. If I were to work with velvet fabric again in a similar skirt project, the back would have to be two separate panels to ensure they are cut in the same/complementing nap direction.

The different nap directions seen at the back of the skirt

I hope there are some useful tips in this post! Stay tuned for my new sewing projects very soon 🙂



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