Making this Kilt (traditional Swedish skirt) is quite difficult, but with enough patience and time, even a novice seamstress can make it. This article will teach you how to make one.
Part 1 of 6: Before You Begin: Choose the Right Tartan (Checkered) Pattern
Step 1. Choose the tartan according to the clan
Each Scottish clan and family has had a distinct tartan style since the early 1800s. You can wear a pattern that suits your clan.
- Find out which clan you belong to by checking the names associated with Scottish ancestry. You can check the name here:
- Find information about your clan. Once you know your clan name, you can get your clan information related to the tartan style you will be wearing. You can check it out here:
Step 2. Select the tartan according to the area
District tartan is the same as clan tartan. There are several districts scattered throughout Scotland and around the world, you only need to wear the tartan according to the district your family comes from.
- District of Scotland:
- District of England:
- District of America:
- District of Canada:
- Other districts:
Step 3. The choice of tartan according to the regiment
Some Scottish regiments and others have various tartan-colored tigers. If in your area there is a certain regiment, then wear it according to the regiment that is related to you.
Here are some types of tartan from each regiment:
Step 4. Use the common tartan if you can't find your clan
The common tartan that was used for the general public could be used by anyone regardless of clan, regiment, district, or other information.
- Traditional tartan brands such as Hunting Stewart, Black Watch, Caledonian and Jacobite.
- Modern Tartans such as Scottish National, Brave Heart Warrior, Flower of Scotland and Pride of Scotland.
Part 2 of 6: Measurement and Preparation
Step 1. Measure the waist and hips
Use a tape measure to measure the circumference of the hips and waist. This size will determine how much material will be used.
- For women, measure around the slimmest part of you and the widest part of your hips.
- For men, measure the top corner of your hipbone and the widest part of your buttocks.
- When taking measurements, make sure the tape is tight, not loose.
Step 2. Determine the length of the skirt
Traditional skirts usually have a length from the waist to the knees. Use a ruler tape to estimate the length.
If you want to wear a wide belt on your skirt, then add about 5 cm to the length of the skirt
Step 3. Calculate how much material will be used
Since you will be forming the pleats for the skirt, you will need more material than measured.
- Measure the width of the pattern from the tartan fabric. Each fold consists of 2.5 cm of visible pattern. In other words, if the width of the pattern folds is 15.25 cm, then each fold is 17.75 cm.
- Calculate the amount of material you need by doubling half of your hip size to add the required material for each fold and adding this value to your overall hip measurement. Add about 20 percent for additional folds.
Step 4. Hem the material, if needed
Use safety pins to secure the top and bottom ends, then make sure you fold the outer edges at each end of the tartan pattern.
This does not need to be done if the material has been glued at the top and bottom ends
Part 3 of 6: Making Folds
Step 1. Make the first fold
The first fold will help you find the center of the material, and it will look slightly different from the next fold.
- Fold the bottom of the material naturally about 15.25 cm on the right. Mark it with a pin at the waist.
- To the left of the material, fold it over the two tartan patterns. Hold it with a pin at the waist.
Step 2. Measure your folds
Use a piece of cardboard to mark the width of a tartan pattern. Divide the marked area into 3-8 equal parts.
Look and determine how many sections to divide the pattern into. The center will be visible through the crease, so the center should cover the visible part of the pattern
Step 3. Fold the rest of the outside of the skirt
Use the guides you made from the cardboard on each tartan pattern on the side you fold. Fold the top layer and match the next fold. Hold it with a pin.
The guide drawing should give you an idea of where you should fold your first few folds. Once you start folding, you'll probably find that you don't need a guide because forever the pattern of the skirt will look the same
Step 4. Sew the folds along the bottom of the material
Use the stick on the sewing machine to sew each edge of the fold, holding down the bottom of the material.
You have to do it two lines. The first stitch should be about 1/4 of the length of the base material, and the second should be about 1/2 of the length of the bottom
Step 5. Iron the folds flat
Use a steam iron to press the folds in place to make the folds last longer and help keep the folds in shape. Iron along the side of the fold.
If your iron is not a steam iron, you can dampen a cloth and then press gently against the folds. Place the pressed fabric between the iron and the skirt material and this will create steam in the creases being ironed
Step 6. Sew the crease down
Sew the entire width of the fold down the length of the fold.
- Sew straight with your sewing machine at the top of the fold, about 2.5 cm from the top edge.
- Sew straight with your sewing machine across the folds, ironing the vertical edges of each fold. Sew about 10 cm. Do not sew every crease down.
Step 7. Cut a bit of the back of the fold
This folding method will result in a scrap of material, so you can cut off this piece of waste.
Cut off the excess material from the beginning 2.5 cm above the hips and ending at the waist. Do not cut material from the beginning and end of the fold
Part 4 of 6: Adding Belts
Step 1. Cut a little material for the belt
The width is about 12.7 cm and the length should match the length of the top edge of your skirt.
The belt is slightly longer than your waist measurement
Step 2. Sew the belt to the outer top edge of the skirt
Twist the bottom edge of the bottom belt material about 1.27 cm. Sew the pleated edge 2.5 cm from the top edge of the skirt.
The remaining width of the belt should be folded over the top of the skirt. You don't need to finish it because the layer will cover the edges of the material
Part 5 of 6: Adding Layers
Step 1. Cut the fabric into several pieces
Cut about 91 cm of fabric or canvas to 25 cm for the width.
Step 2. Wrap the piece of fabric around your waist
The layer will be made up of three lines 25 cm wide.
- Wrap the first section along the wearer's back.
- Attach two additional sections to the first on the right and left where the side seams would normally be visible.
- Holding the two sides together, fold the two halves until each piece covers the side seam on the opposite side.
- Hold it with pins on each part.
Step 3. Sew the lining to the belt
Align the top edge of the lining to the inside of the top of the belt and sew.
- Stitches are done overlapping along the top of the skirt to attach the lining.
- Install only the parts you need. You do not need to sew the bottom of the outer layer of the skirt.
- Note that the belt will also be sewn under the lining, to keep it in place.
Step 4. Hemming the material
Fold the bottom edge of the undercoat and sew straight along the length of the material. Do not sew to the outside of the skirt.
You can also use liquid adhesive if you don't want the glue to seal
Part 6 of 6: The Final Touches
Step 1. Attach Two thin belts to the inside of the skirt
You will need two leather belts that are roughly 2.5 cm wide and strong enough to wrap around the waist.
- The first leather belt should fit just below the waist, at the bottom of the skirt.
- The second leather belt should be placed just below the crease that is sewn down.
- Sew the belt in place. The leather part of the belt must be attached to the lining while the buckle part must be attached to the fold.
Step 2. Attach the velcro to the skirt
For an extra, sew a Velcro strip to the top of the apron.
One half of the Velcro should be sewn to the top right of the front cover while the other half should be sewn to the top left side
Step 3. Wear the Skirt
With this, your skirt is complete. Wear it by wrapping the material around the waist and bending the belt so that the material stays in place. Use Velcro for added reinforcement so your skirt stays in place.