How to Make an Easy-Sew Poodle Skirt

How to Sew an Easy Poodle Skirt
Mollie Johanson

Rock around the clock in this easy DIY poodle skirt! These simple circle skirts adorned with fluffy pups made their start in the 1950s, and they're still popular as Halloween costumes and for themed dances and parties. It's easy to make your own with simple supplies and basic sewing. In fact, you make this skirt the night before you need it!

Poodle Skirt Supplies
Mollie Johanson

Materials

  • 1–2 Yards of 72" Wide Felt (1 yard for a small child up to 2 yards for a tall adult—
    see below for measurements)
  • 2-inch Wide Soft Elastic
  • White or Black Felt for the Poodle
  • Ric Rac
  • Small Black Pom Pom
  • Tape Measure
  • Pen
  • Sewing Scissors
  • Pins
  • Sewing Machine and Thread
  • Craft or Fabric Glue
Mark the Center Opening
Mollie Johanson

Measure and Cut the Skirt

Measure the waist of who will wear the skirt. Add 3 inches to this measurement, then divide the total by 6.28. This gives you the radius for the waist opening.

There's a bit of flexibility in these measurements, so you can round off the number to the nearest fraction. For this sample, the measurement rounded to 5.25".

On the fold of the felt, mark a center point, then pin or hold the end of your tape measure to the marked point. Hold your pen at the measurement on the tape measure and use it as a compass to mark a half circle.

Mark the Hem Circle
Mollie Johanson

Decide how long you want the skirt to be. Typically a poodle skirt falls just below the knee. Add the skirt length to the radius of the center circle.

For this sample, we added 25 inches for a total of 30.25".

Use the tape measure and pen as a compass to mark a half circle the size of your total measurement.

Cut out the large circle and the center opening. Keep your cuts as smooth as possible for a great finished edge without hemming.

Sew the Waistband
Mollie Johanson

Cut and Sew the Elastic Waist

Measure and cut a piece of wide elastic that's 2 inches longer than the actual waist measurement (not the circle opening measurement). Fold one end of the elastic under 1 inch and sew it to the other end of the elastic, overlapping the ends.

Pin the Waistband to the Skirt
Mollie Johanson

Pin the elastic into the center opening of the skirt. Space the pins and the extra fabric evenly. The top of the felt should be at about the middle of the elastic.

Sew the Waistband in the Poodle Skirt
Mollie Johanson

Working on the wrong side first, sew around the waist, stretching the elastic as you sew about 1/8" from the edge of the felt.

Next, working on the right side, sew down the bottom edge of the elastic, once again stretching the elastic as you sew.

Cut Out the Felt Poodle Pieces
Mollie Johanson

Decorate the Poodle Skirt

Download the Poodle Body Template and Poodle Tufts Templates. Print the pages at 100% for a teen/adult size skirt or shrink them down to 60–70% for a child-size skirt. Be sure to shrink them both equally.

Cut out the pieces from felt and lay them out near the hem of the skirt.

Glue the Decorations to the Skirt
Mollie Johanson

Glue the poodle pieces down with fabric or craft glue. Spread the glue, rather than just running a thick line, which can show through the felt.

Use the ric rac to make a collar and leash for the poodle. Run a thin line of glue in the shape of the leash and then press the ric rac onto the glue. Try to avoid thick glue lines which will show when they poke out from under the ric rac.

You can also sew the poodle and leash onto the skirt, but for most situations, glue works fine.

Finally, glue a small pom pom to the poodle's nose.

DIY Costume Poodle Skirt
Mollie Johanson

Be sure to let the glue dry before wearing the skirt.

Pair your skirt with a simple t-shirt and a cardigan for a 50s vibe. Add a neck scarf, bobby socks, and some saddle shoes or tennis shoes to complete the look!