How to Make a Tube Skirt

The Tube: A Simple Skirt Anyone Can Sew

Warm weather requires cool clothing and nothing’s cooler than knits; not the heavy sweater knits worn in colder weather, but the kind used to make T-shirts. Not only is this knit inexpensive to buy, it’s perfect for easy-to-sew tube skirts. Tubes skirts are cool to wear and when made according to current skirt lengths and the trendy colors of this year’s summer season, they’re quite fashion forward.

Currently, a variety of skirt lengths are popular – from minis to maxis. For summer wear, midis, so-named because they are mid-calf length – are the perfect length for a tube skirt. Maxis are too long for the season and if made from knits, minis tend to slide up, something you really don’t want a super short skirt to do. According to, colors trending for Summer 2011 include coral and honeysuckle.

How to make a tube skirt

Making a tube skirt is very simple. First, you get to go shopping! Go to your favorite fabric store and find lightweight knits in a variety of colors that appeal to you. Think of the tops you already have that will coordinate with the colors you choose. Make sure to include the trendy colors in shades that suit your complexion and style. Don’t be afraid to choose prints, stripes, geometric shapes and even plaids! Be adventurous with your selections. Summertime is fun time!

Measure your waist and hips for the width and from your waist to midi-calf for the length. Then cut two pieces of lightweight knit fabric half the width of your hips and the length of your waist to hips plus four inches. The extra width and length gives you room to sew up the sides and hem the top and bottom of the skirt. Baste the two pieces of the skirt together and try it on for fit, making sure it’s not too snug or too loose. Since the knit is stretchy, it doesn’t have to fit perfectly. Make any necessary corrections.

Sew the sides of the two pieces of fabric together once you have the fit right, hem the top and bottom and you have a tube skirt! Repeat the above procedure using the measurements you’ve taken to make more skirts until you have a whole summer wardrobe of tube skirts that match tops you have on hand, as well as new tops in the season’s color trends you’ve added to your wardrobe.

Need a skirt or dress to wear to a summer cocktail or formal affair?

Buy some sparkle knit fabric in one of the trendy colors or a neutral like khaki or white; then measure from your waist or chest to your ankle, depending on whether you’re making a skirt or a dress. Cut the knit the same width as before, only make the length according to your waist or chest to ankle measurement. Now you have a tube skirt or dress fit for a party, graduation, summer concert or just a night on the town.

Match the skirt to a matching tube top that you can make by simply adding four inches to your bra size and using the measurement to cut the same fabric used for the full-length skirt or a coordinating fabric.  The length should be measured from your chest to your waist, unless you want to make it a midriff top. Add four inches to the length, too. Stitch the sides together, then hem the top and bottom and you’ll have a sexy tube top to wear with your festive skirt.

Your summer will be much cooler and a lot more fun with your new wardrobe of simple, colorful tube skirts that will get you through the hot season in style with very minimal impact on your clothing budget. Maybe you can use the money you save on clothing to plan a trip to an oceanside condo or hotel where you can use your tube skirts as beach cover ups or wear with one of your new tops for a long walk on beach.