Thursday, November 15, 2012

{Tutorial} Turkey Thanksgiving Outfit

I had the honor of guest posting at The Ribbon Retreat blog last week!  This was such a fun, quick project.  I couldn't believe how simple the skirt was to make.  I'll definitely be making more circle skirts!

If you have a blog and are interested in guest posting for them, I highly recommend it!  It was a pleasure working with them AND they provided the supplies for the project.  

Thanksgiving is one of my favorite times of the year!  I love the yummy food, delicious desserts, and, of course, quality time with family.  And what best represents Thanksgiving?  TURKEY!

I'm going to walk you through how to make this custom outfit yourself!

You'll need:

7 fat quarters
piece of elastic {mine was 1″}
matching thread
fusible web {I like Heat N Bond Lite}
turkey pattern {download here}

{my fabric choices were Raspberry Medallion in Zoe for Studio E, Yellow Seedling Star in Garden-Go-Round by Studio E, Green Swirls in Good Life for Riley Blake, Orange Essential Dots, Slate Josephine’s Bouquet in Cameo for Free Spirit, Coral Vintage Ironwork in Sunset Garden for Michael Miller, and Brown Circles in Decadence for Riley Blake, in order}
Let's start with the shirt!

Download and print the pattern piece HERE.

Trace the pattern pieces onto the paper side of your fusible web.  Cut out roughly around the edges leaving a little room to cut the actual piece later.

Iron onto the wrong side of your fabric following the instructions with your fusing product.

Now, cut the pieces out on your pattern lines.  Peel off the paper on the backs and begin to arrange the pieces and iron down each layer as you go.

Machine stitch 1/8" from the edge of each piece of the turkey.

Pull the loose threads to the inside of the shirt and tie them off to prevent unraveling.

For other appliqué tutorials, check out these: Disney Cars, Monthly Momento Onesies, and Mickey and Minnie tees.

Now onto the skirt!

You will need a few measurements and a little bit of math, but I'll walk you through it!

First you will need a waist measurement.  My 5 year old daughter's was 19," but she's a peanut for her age.  The other measurement that you'll need is skirt length.  I measured one of her skirts that hits an inch or so above the knee.  I used 10."

To calculate the radius to draft your pattern, you'll need some math :)  {Fun Fact:  I was a math minor in college...too bad I had to google my equations for this pattern!}

Circumference = 2*pi*radius 
Radius = Circumference/2*pi

The Circumference is your waist measurement + 2 inches to allow for some gathering in the waist.  For me:
Radius = 21/6.28 = 3.34"

Grab a large piece of paper {or several letter sized pieces taped together}.  Start from the top left corner and measure and mark several spots 3.34" from the corner.  Since my ruler wasn't very precise, I just marked mine at 3.25."  Connect the lines to create a semi-circle.  If you have a compass, you could use that much easier :)

Now to figure out the radius of the bottom curve, add your skirt length to the radius of the top circle. 

Waist Radius + Skirt Length = Bottom Hem Radius

For me:
3.25 + 10 = 13.25

Measure 13.25" from the top left corner and connect the dots again.  This makes a pattern piece for one quarter of the skirt.  If you are making a regular circle skirt with one solid piece of fabric, check out this tutorial.

I wanted to piece together my six fabrics used for the turkey feathers to make the skirt.  So I needed a piece for 1/6th of a circle.  To do this, I needed to make a piece that was 2/3rds of this piece.

Using your ruler, draw a line from one end of the arc to the other and measure it's length.  Divide that measurement by 3.  {For me, 4.67"/3 = 1.55ish inches}.  Split your line into thirds.

Do the same with the bottom arc. {For me, 18.75"/3 = 6.25"}

You should have two marks on each line that divides the lines into thirds.  Using your ruler, draw a line from the top left corner through the second mark in both of your lines.

Cut along this line and along the arcs to create your pattern piece for 1/6th of the skirt.  Use this piece to cut out one piece from each fabric.

With right sides together, sew the pieces together to create a solid circle.  Either serge or zig zag the unfinished edge of each seam to prevent the fabric from unraveling.

Once finished, serge or zig zag the top and bottom of the skirt.

At this point, you can finish the bottom hem as you choose.  I left the edge zig zagged and slightly frayed to give a more rustic look.  You can also iron under and hem the edge or add biased tape.

Next, cut your piece of elastic.  You will want a little room, so add 1 inch to your waist measurement.  I cut my piece 20."  Sew the ends of the elastic together to create a circle waistband. 

To pin your elastic to the skirt evenly, start by folding the elastic in half and the skirt in half and pinning the ends together.

Next, fold evenly the other way and pin the skirt in 4 places total.  Do it once more for the skirt to be pinned in 8 places.

To make sure the skirt gathers evenly when sewing the waistband on, hold the elastic at two adjacent pins and stretch it to the same length as the section of skirt that you are sewing.  Continue to do this until the waistband is sewn on.

Next, stick it on your girl and let her twirl!!


  1. So so cute! Found you via your sugar bee guest post newest follower xo

  2. Thanks for the pattern! I was able to make two turkey shirts for my girls to wear and they turned out very cute.

    1. You are welcome! I'm so happy to hear that someone made it!!!!


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