12 Skirts of Christmas – Side Panel Knit Skirt DIY

Easy Side Panel Knit Skirt with Yoga Waistband DIY

With all of the holiday parties that accompany the Christmas season, I needed a new skirt to wear.  Something that would be comfortable, yet stylish, and allow for room to…..grow. After all, I never met a Christmas cookie I didn’t like. HA!  But seriously, nothing is more uncomfortable than trying to smile and be merry, while your pants are digging into you. The Side Panel Knit Skirt is easy to sew, has a comfortable yoga waistband, and has knit sides to allow for a lot of extra movement.  It is also a part of the 12 Skirts of Christmas Series going on over at Sewing in No Mans Land.

Easy Side Panel Knit Skirt DIY

Side Panel Knit Skirt, easy to make and ultra comfortable

To make the Side Panel Knit Skirt, you will need:

  • 1 yd. Knit Fabric
  • 5/8 yd. coordinating Fabric for front / back panel (can be suede, leather, cotton, woven, etc.)
  • Measuring Tape
  • Basic Sewing Essentials
  • And a little bit of Math skills

Measuring / Cutting Instructions:

First we need to determine how much fabric to cut for our pattern pieces.

  1. Measure around your hips, at the fullest point, and write down that number. 
  2. Divide hip measurement by 4.  Write down that number. We will call this ‘Width’.
  3. Measure from your waist, down to your desired skirt length. (Just below the knee is very flattering for this skirt type). Add 1.5″ for seam allowance, and write down that number.  We will call this ‘Length’.
  4. Cut (4) Skirt Panels width x length. (2) Knit, (2) coordinating fabric.  (Do NOT add seam allowance to the width of these measurements).

Other measurements you will need to record for later on in the tutorial:

  1. Measure around your waist, and record number. We will call that ‘Waist’. 
  2. Measure from waist to hip, record number.  We will call that ‘Waist to Hip’.
  3. Also, keep on hand your total ‘Hip’ measurement all around.

Sewing Instructions:

side panel skirt DIY


  1. Materials needed, as listed above. 
  2. Cut your (4) Panels, based on the width and length determined above.
  3. Place (1) Knit panel, and (1) coordinating fabric panel right sides together and sew along the side edge. Press seam to one side, and edge stitch to secure.
  4. Repeat for opposite side of coordinating fabric panel and other knit panel.  You will now have a line of fabric that alternates from knit-coordinating fabric-knit. (*Do not sew on other coordinating fabric panel yet!)
  5. Subtract your ‘Waist’ measurement from your ‘Hip’ measurement. For example, I am 41″ Hips, 33″ Waist. 41 – 33 = 8.  Divide that number now by 4.  My result is 2″. On the back end of the top of your skirt fabric sides, on the knit fabric, measure in 2″ (or your resulting number) on each side and mark along the top. Now, using a ruler measure down from the top your ‘Waist to Hip’ measurement and mark. Draw a slightly curved line from each marking, and cut excess fabric off. You are essentially creating darts in your skirt to fit your body.
  6. Using your cut off fabric dart as a pattern piece, cut off the upper 2 sides from your remaining Coordinating fabric panel.
  7. Sew coordinating fabric panel right sides together with either end of your skirt knit panels. You now have a tube skirt.
  8. Making the Yoga Waistband – Cut (1) piece of knit fabric, with the stretch going from left to right, your ‘Waist measurement’ minus 1″ x your desired yoga waistband length. (I like them nice and long for folding over, mine is approximately 8-9″ in length.
  9. Fold yoga waistband right sides together, and sew the side edge seam. Press open seam, and sew down both sides to secure.
  10. Slip waistband over the top of the skirt, aligning the waistband seam with the back center of the skirt. Pin around, and sew using a stretch stitch, zig zag stitch, or serger. Hem the bottom of the skirt, and you are done!

side panel knit skirt DIY, ultimate comfort and ease with a yoga waistband

Whatever you do, please do not let the math scare you away! It may seem confusing at first, but once you figure this out you will be making custom skirts Like a BOSS – they fit like a glove, and are super comfy to boot.

Don’t want to do the math? Delia Creates has an alternate method of creating easy knit pencil skirts that you will love!

side panel knit skirt DIY

side panel knit skirt DIY

12skirtsbuttonfinal Be sure to stop by Sewing in No Mans Land to check out the other 12 Skirts of Christmas as part of her fun Series!

Thanks so much for stopping by.

Wishing you all a very Merry (and comfortable!) Christmas, and until next time…

Happy Sewing!


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Jess Abbott the Sewing Rabbit is the founder and creative director behind the me sew crazy blog, as well as SewSet.com, 5 & 10 Designs, GNO Events, and co-editor of STYLO. She resides in Virginia Beach with her husband and 3 children.
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    • says

      hahha – thank you so much Anne! You are so sweet! And tell me about it, every time I need a skirt right about now – it needs to be knit. Must lay off the cookies. HA

  1. says

    Pencil Skirts are my new love (as I’m 7 month along). They are soooo comfy. I’ll try your version (but will use also knit fabric as coordinating fabric) as it will break up the solid ones!
    Thanks for sharing!
    Have wonderful holidays!

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