blog

Simple Knit Maxi Skirt Tutorial

Now that our new Anya Knits are in, we’ve been using them to sew up all kinds of cute projects in the studio. One of our favorites is this simple maxi skirt, which can be made in about an hour using right around 1 yard of our new, wider knits. It’s super comfy, and a perfect weight for spring. Here’s the tutorial for you by Mindy Lechman!

 

You will need:

  • 60”-wide knit fabric to measure (see step 2)

  • 1 ½” elastic (enough to fit waist, see step 1)

  • Sewing machine or serger and matching thread

  • measuring tape

  • chalk or fabric marker

  • ruler

Step by step guide:

  1. To determine the size of the top edge of your pattern, measure your waist at the point you like your waistband to fall. Write that number down, add 2” (seam allowance) and divide by 2 to get the length of your waistline on your pattern. Subtract ½” from your waist measurement to determine how much elastic is needed.

 

waist measurement = ________ + 2” = __________ ÷ 2 = __________ pattern measurement

waist measurement = ________ – ½” = ___________ amount of elastic needed

 

  1. To determine the length, measure from that point on your waist to the desired length. I wanted mine about 2” from the floor. Add 1” and write that number down. This measurement is the amount of fabric you will need. Mine came to 36”, so I will need 1 yard of 60”-wide knit fabric.

length measurement = __________ + 1” = _____________

 

  1. Wash and dry your fabric, then cut to the length determined in step 2.

  2. Lay your fabric out, folded in half, selvage to selvage. Measure or fold in half again to find the center and mark with a pin. Using your chalk/marker, mark your waist pattern measurement, centered over the pin. For example, my waist calculation is 16” (30” + 2” = 32” ÷2 = 16”), so I marked 8” to the left and right of the pin.knit maxi diagram

  3. Using a yardstick and chalk/marker, connect your waist marks to the edges of the fabric.

  4. knit maxi tutorial step 5

    Leaving the fabric folded on the selvedge, cut out. knit maxi tutorial step 6You will end up with both the front and back sides of the skirt ready to sew.knit maxi tutorial step 6a

  5. Place right sides together, then sew the side seams using a ½” seam allowance. knit maxi tutorial step 7

  6. Overlap the elastic by ½” and zig zag over both raw edges to make a continuous band. lay the band flat and mark midpoints – these marks will line up with the side seams.knit maxi tutorial step 8

  7. Place the elastic along the right side of the waist of the skirt, pinning midpoints to side seams,  and stitch to attach. Use a longer stitch length and stretch the elastic slightly and evenly as you go. If you are using a standard machine rather than a serger, use a zigzag stitch here. knit maxi tutorial step 9

  8. Turn the elastic to the inside. Tack the elastic down at the side seams to hold in place.knit maxi tutorial step 10

  9. Try on your skirt and hem if desired. You may want to leave the bottom edge raw or hem it up for a more finished look.

  10. Optional: Add patch pockets!

 

Let us know if you try this and how it turned out!

Anya Organic Knits by Monaluna

 

Our new Anya Organic Knits have arrived and are now shipping! We’re so excited about this new knit fabric quality – it’s 58″-wide, 200 gram organic cotton interlock, and super soft and cozy! You can view the whole collection here. The prints work well for kids and adult apparel, and we’ve been stitching up some great simple sewing outfits at the shop. We’ll have free tutorials for you here very soon!

green landscape

 

I know that January is technically the first month of the year, but I always find myself thinking of it as more of a pause. January is a chance to catch your breath from the craziness that was the holidays, pick up the confetti and start thinking ahead to the new year. Make a few resolutions, give them a trial run, and revise. By the first of February, I usually find myself finally feeling ready to plunge into the blue yonder that is the New Year. So, happy 2016, everybody!

 

The dust is still settling over here from a 2015 full of change. We found our new studio space, spent all spring and summer (and most of the fall, too) spiffing it up, moved in, hired new employees, and finally opened up the shop at the end of September. Although I wanted to be able to do all of that without missing a beat, I found myself stepping back a bit, writing less, spending less time on social media, and even skipping a couple of trade shows. I had to recognize that I couldn’t make so many changes without slowing the pace a little.

 

Now it’s February and I finally feel ready to step it up a bit. Our newest collection, the Anya Knits, just arrived yesterday and we have a bunch of fun tutorials lined up to share here on the blog over the coming months. I’m just finishing up our next collection, and there’s another in the wings, so I’ll be sharing some sneak peeks soon! And we’ve added a new trade show to our circuit this year and will be at the L.A. Textile Show – booth #2012 if any of you will be there. I’m enjoying the energy I stored up over my January pause, and I’m excited to share our new projects with you!

 

Our new Anya collection arrived this week, and we’ve got it all stocked up and ready to ship! As always, both collections are 100% GOTS-certified organic cotton. The prints are woodland-inspired with a distinct mid-century Scandinavian vibe, and the palette is sophisticated with grays and dusty pinks, moody teal and citron yellow.

Anya Poplins by Monaluna

We always get a little fabric air-shipped ahead so that we can sew up samples, and we’ve had a great time creating with this collection. The poplins are lovely for garments and quilts (quilt images coming soon!), while the barkcloth has been perfect for coats and pillows, coasters and napkins, totes, bags and hats. Here are a few images from our photoshoot last week:

Anya by Monaluna

Anya Organic Fabric by Monaluna

Anya Organic Fabric by Monaluna

Anya Organic Fabric by Monaluna

Anya Organic Fabric by Monaluna

Anya Organic Barkcloth by Monaluna

Anya Organic Fabric by Monaluna

Anya Organic Fabric by Monaluna

Anya Organic Fabric by Monaluna

Hop on over to the website to stock up on Anya!

We have a brand new fabric coming in this month: organic Barkcloth! This fabric style was popular for upholstery and home furnishings in the ’40s, ’50s and ’60s, and we thought it would be a perfect fit with our new Anya collection, which has a distinct mid-century Scandinavian feel.

Anya Organic Barkcloth by Monaluna

Anya Organic Barkcloth by Monaluna

While the textured fabric is perfect for upholstery and pillows, it’s also great for bags and purses, hats, table linens and any garments that call for a heavier, more structured fabric.

Anya Organic Bark Cloth Pillows

Anya Organic Barkcloth by Monaluna

We just got the sample fabric in last week, and we’re loving to sew with it! Stay tuned for more fun Barkcloth inspiration coming soon.

Anya Barkcloth Pillows by Monaluna

Mod Blooms Barkcloth by Monaluna

Monaluna Barkcloth by Monaluna

Organic Barkcloth by Monaluna

 

 

Anya Organic Cotton Knits by Monaluna

We have brand-new organic cotton knits coming next month! We’re printing 8 designs from the Anya poplin collection on a wonderful new knit base cloth. It’s super soft, stretchy, and 58 inches wide! I’ve been so impressed with the samples that I’m dying to get my hands on the final fabric to whip up some new clothes for the cozy-weather months here.

Anya Organic Knits by Monaluna

The collection strikes a nice balance between playful, kid-friendly prints and some more sophisticated designs that are perfect for adult garments. The knits are all interlock, 200 grams/sq. meter, and really wonderful to work with.

Anya Organic Knits by Monaluna

We should have the fabrics in toward the end of next month. You can pop over to our website to see the full range or to place a pre-order for the collection!

Anya Organic Fabric by MonalunaOur brand new organic fabric collection, Anya, is coming soon, and we now have the poplin collection available for pre-order! Hop on over to our website to get your order in early. This collection will be available in early November. We will also be carrying many of these prints on a wonderful, wider knit base cloth (58″ wide!), as well as 5 limited edition prints on Bark Cloth! We’ll have those groups on the site soon. 

 

Anya Organic Fabric by Monaluna

 

This collection draws inspiration from mid-century Scandinavian design, and has a stylized woodland theme. Playful owls and hedgehogs are perfect for the younger set, while the florals and geometrics work well for more sophisticated projects and decor.

 

Anya Organic Fabric by Monaluna

Anya Organic Fabric by Monaluna

Check out the full collection on the website here!

 

Monaluna Shop Outside

It’s been a couple weeks since we officially opened, and I’ve finally had a chance to catch my breath – and share some photos! It feels like this has been SUCH a long time coming, but when I really take stock of how much we’ve done over the past 6 months or so, I can see where the time has gone. It’s been so worth it, though! I am loving being in this space, having more room, being able to display all the fabrics and quilts, and really see the prints working together. I’m also enjoying being able to meet some of my customers and be a part of the community here. And it’s been pretty amazing to see the space come together and really take shape. Our customers seem to love it, too! Here’s a little summary of 6 months of work:

Before and After

As you can see, it’s a big change! And each step of the way we *got* to learn a new skill…

carpet un-laying

…Carpet un-laying…

demolition

…demolition (you should see the slo-mo video we got!)…

Monacan shop ceiling in progress

…ceiling painting (I really loved that mini-scaffolding – thanks for the loan, Jim!)…

Tile restoration

…tile restoration…

Building the Cutting Table

…furniture building…

painting!

… and all about paint guns!

Once the hard labor was done, we got to really have fun with the details and make it a space that feels good to us. So many aspects of the shop have stories behind them, and it’s been a lot of fun to seek out special pieces and put together the displays.

shelves 2

We used the boards from our old fence to panel our room divider and the bathroom wall. A friend of ours, who happened to live in our house 20 years before we bought it, stopped into the shop right after we opened, and we laughed when we realized that he had actually been the one who built the fence 30 years ago.

bathroom

fabric shelves

Our new friend Warren custom-built the fabric shelves, because I was having a lot of trouble finding shelves that would accommodate 3 tiers of fabric.

reclaimed shelves b

The long shelves in the front of the shop were made from a Modesto Ash tree that had to be cut down near our local library. They’re beautiful and strong, and I love seeing them in the shop every day.

monaluna jewelry display

Our jewelry display was bought from a nice woman we met on craigslist, and the display boxes were from an old hardware store. We painted them white on the inside to show off the jewelry.

monaluna organic fabric bundles

Our electrician, Paul, brought us 3 wooden spools from a job site, and once we painted them up they’ve become our favorite shop displays!

shop inside

Monaluna shop front

And then we’ve found lots of beautiful wooden and metal details that bring the warmth of well-used natural materials.

juicy organic fat quarters

We’re loving the space. If you’re in the area, stop by and see us!

BEFORE AND AFTER OUTSIDE

 

Juicy Organic Fabric by Monaluna

And just like that, it’s fall! Yesterday I dropped Anabelle off for her first day at Kindergarten, and I found myself wondering WHERE did the whole summer go?? And then I looked around at the now fully-functioning studio and about-to-be-functioning shop and remember: oh, yeah, I’ve been working on this for the last 6 months! Turns out, rehabbing an old storefront and building a shop while keeping the business running took a bit more time than I thought. But it’s now finally almost here! We’ll be open in 2 weeks! And once I get some photos of the final shop/studio, I’ll post a little slide show of the progress – it’s been a pretty amazing transformation.

 

The other big news is that our newest organic fabric collection, Juicy, is here in all it’s vibrant and fruity glory! We have these playful prints in both poplin and canvas, and I’ve been working on a bunch of projects for the shop opening using these fabrics. They’re sewing up into the cutest aprons, placemats, coasters and pillows, not to mention the 60’s-vibe A-line dresses and Skater Shirts in these photos. Check out all the prints on our website here.

 

Juicy Organic Fabric by Monaluna

Juicy Organic Fabric by Monaluna

Skater Shirt in Lemon-Lime by Monaluna

Juicy Organic Fabric by Monaluna

Skater Shirt in Juicy by Monaluna

Juicy Organic Fabric Collection by Monaluna

Haiku Organic Fabric by Monaluna

 

Our brand new Haiku and Haiku Lawn collections are in, and they’re now shipping! It’s always exciting when new collections arrive, but this one has been especially fun because there are so many things I want to sew for ME! With Quilt Market right around the corner, I had Karen over at One Girl Circus sew up some beautiful samples of our new Sarah Skirt (coming soon!), as well as a gorgeous Ella Dress using our new Poem cotton lawn for Anabelle. The fabrics sew up so beautifully, and the little pops of gold add a special shimmer. As always, both groups are GOTS-certified organic fabric.

 

The Sarah Skirt by Monaluna

The Ella Dress in Poem Lawn by Monaluna

 

 

It’s been a very busy couple of weeks here, as we’re (still!) fixing up the new studio/shop, moving our storage to a new warehouse, preparing for Market and receiving the new fabrics. Our next collection, Juicy, is coming together, too, and I’ll have an update on that group once we’re back from Minneapolis.