Posts Tagged “stretch fabric”

Types of Skirts to make with Stretch Fabric

One of the easiest pieces of clothing to create is the stretch skirt, but it still helps to gather introductory information before starting this project. Skirts of different lengths are made from versatile elastic materials.

You might want to start out creating pieces of a simpler design and then work up to the more complex versions. This may be a hobby for you at first, and eventually it could become a profession. When you are not sure of your pattern-making skills, stretch fabrics can help you to gain the practice and confidence that you need to move on to other types of fabric.

Some of the Most Popular Types of Skirts from Stretch Fabric:

  • Bias Cut Skirt – This is a skirt of which the seams are cut on an angle against the natural fabric grain instead of straight across the grain. These garments are often long, flowing, made into an A-line shape, and come in formal and informal variants. However, other styles such as pencil-shaped variants of this very important clothing ensemble piece can be created.
Maternity Skirt

Maternity Skirt with Stretch Fabric

  • Maternity Skirt – This covers a wide variety of skirts made with stretch fabric. Sometimes extra elastic is used in the abdominal area but oftentimes the entire material is made into a more seamless style. Denim and cotton as well as Spandex and other expandable materials are used to make a wide array of this type of garment. Today, short, medium, and long cuts are designed for the expectant mother.
  • Trouser Skirt – The black, charcoal, or navy washable ones made and sold by Eddie Bauer are a perfect example of the type of skirt that can be made using stretchable fabric. This business-like pencil design is a recommended professional or casual pick that is appropriate for multiple locations.  Knee and angle length varieties also can be made with stretch material, as well as the below-the-knee variety that has buttons all the way down the front and on the pockets.


  • Mini Skirt – Denim and cotton are the two main fabrics that are often combined with other elastic materials such as Spandex or Lycra used to create mini-skirts. The A-line and pencil versions are among the most popular. Sometimes shorter ones with ruffles are worn today and these can also be constructed with stretch fabric.


  • Pencil Skirt from Stretch Fabric

    Pencil Skirt from Stretch Fabric

    Pencil- This style is one that usually is shaped to fit symmetrically all around and straight down from the waist. Pencil-shaped skirts are often cut for wearing just above or below the knee.  Certain types are appropriate for the office while others might be more suitable for a night out. 

There are many different styles to choose from, giving you endless projects.  Using stretch fabrics can be a great tool for people who want to try to make their own patterns but have never tried before, as they are more forgiving to your pattern-cutting mistakes than rigid fabrics, which often wind up not fitting together properly or not being large enough for your body until you are more accustomed to making your own patterns.  Stretch fabrics will often stretch to fit the other pattern pieces or your body.  Have fun exploring and trying different styles of stretch skirts!

January 13, 2012 Posted Under Uncategorized

How to make a mermaid tail

Childrens mermaid tail.

Children's mermaid tail.

Whether your daughter wants to dress as Ariel for Halloween, you are planning a photo shoot at the beach, or you have dreams of looking like Darryl Hannah in Splash, you’ll often find it difficult to find a mermaid tail costume that is just right in the store. Luckily, it is very simple to make a mermaid tail out of a stretch fabric like lycra.


After you have selected the color that you want for your fabric, you can use a maxi skirt to help you create a pattern that will fit your height. Leaving enough room at the top to create a waistband and enough room at the bottom for a decorative, fish-like finish, cut it to fit your hips by turning a skirt that fits you well inside out and cutting along the edge.

Once you have cut past the muscular part of your quads, begin tapering it in to be fitted around the bottom of your quads and curving back out in the calves, leaving yourself enough room through the tightest part to walk comfortably. It is a good idea to leave more room than you think that you will need, as it is far easier to make it smaller than it is to make it larger.

DIY Gold mermaid tailFrom there, sew your two pieces together and add an elastic waistband at the top. Try it on for size and, if you have too much room, taper it in to fit the way that you want; try safety pinning your new seam so that you get an idea of how it will fit once completed or sew large, easy to remove stitches.

Once you have found your perfect fit, sew your new seam; it is a good idea to reinforce seams on stretch fabrics by simply sewing over the seam a second time. To finish the bottom, cut a wavy scalloped pattern or tail shape, leaving it open so that you can still walk. Once you are finished, pair it with your favorite bikini top, loose, wavy curls, and enjoy your new stretch fabric mermaid tail!

October 19, 2011 Posted Under Uncategorized

Stretch Fabric for Wall Art

Wall panel art is a relatively cheap way to decorate a wall space.  Choosing the appropriate stretch fabric for the panels, however, may be more tricky than one thinks.  There are endless patterns available for purchase, but many are not suitable for wall art.  Those of us who don’t have a great eye for design often have trouble choosing which fabric to use.  Fortunately, by remembering a few simple tips, one can make their design experience as painless as possible and you might just have a little fun in the process.

Panel Wall Art using Stretch Fabric

Panel Wall Art using Stretch Fabric

The first step, which is perhaps the most important and enjoyable one, is deciding what kind of stretch fabric you ultimately wish to purchase.  One of the more basic designs is a series of pastel colored panels that are either lined evenly across or placed on top of each other on a wall.  The advantage of such a design is that it blends well with practically every other design imaginable.  So you don’t have to worry as much about color clashes or contrasts.  Furthermore, it is the simplest one to use as there is no consideration given to scale.

If you do choose a more complex pattern, however, then you have to first ensure that the design can be seen from across the room.  Since the panels will be hanging on the wall, you don’t want visitors having to squint in order to see the details.  To avoid such a situation, choose stretch fabric that has a larger design.  You can generally find such fabrics either at craft shops or art supply stores or choose from a far wider selection available online.

You’ll want to cut the stretch fabric so that it is larger than your frame.  It is recommended that you leave one and a half to two inches of extra fabric on all sides so that it wraps around to the backside.  Otherwise, you will have to either staple the fabric on the front or sides of the frame, which will leave unsightly staples in view of anyone who is close by.  Once you have the fabric positioned on your panel, you’ll want to pull it tightly, making sure that no slack is left on the front side.  Finally, using the staple gun, add a couple of staples to each corner on the backside and then add more staples around the frame, making sure to pull the fabric tightly as you go along.  After you’ve finished, you can trim any excess fabric away using a pair of cloth scissors.

Large Wall Panel Art using Stretch Fabric

Large Wall Panel Art using Stretch Fabric

Using stretch fabric to create wall panel art is an excellent temporary or long term design solution for a wall space.  While such designs aren’t very durable, they can easily last a few years without any problems whatsoever.  If you live in a household where someone smokes, however, you may have to change panels more often, perhaps every couple of years or so.  White fabrics will yellow over time and dust accumulation can also be a problem.  Then again, where else can someone purchase a stunning work of art for less than a few dollars?   Not only does stretch fabric panel art look great, but it perhaps the most cost effective design solution available.

January 27, 2011 Posted Under Uncategorized

Stretch Fabric Halloween Costumes

When October rolls around, it’s usually the time for everyone to make a mad dash to the costume shop to buy whatever leftovers they can find for Halloween. This year, why not skip the hassle and just make your own costume? There are a ton of different ideas out there, and many of them can be constructed using everyone’s favorite – stretch fabric. If you plan to use that this next trick or treat season, consider some of the costume ideas listed below for inspiration.

Cat Woman
Cat Woman is the emblem of super hero sex appeal, and her look can be easily made from stretch fabric. There are a lot of different interpretations out there to Cat Woman’s look, so you have the option to get a bit creative.

All you need is some good, shiny stretch fabric (usually vinyl) and a set of cat ears to get started. Most often you will find this costume in black, but there are versions in blue and purple. Look up some pictures of cat woman herself and start sewing.

Sexy Nurse
A hot nurse outfit is a must have for at least one Halloween in your lifetime. You can make your nurse costume as tight as you want it to be, and you can be paired with a cute doctor if you’re going to a couple’s party. The key to that ho nurse look is to make your costume a little bit on the short side and slightly revealing up top. Pair this look with some sexy heels and you’ll have all the people swooning at your work costume party. Stretch PVC and vinyl work well here, but just about any stretch fabric will due. The key component is you, after all.

Rock Star
This look works for men and women alike. Most rock stars love stretch fabric, especially when it comes to the pant they wear. If you are looking for something fun and funky, that rock star look could be the perfect fit. Black is a must in terms of color selection, but you can have a wild print to pair with it. The pants have to be skin tight, but that’s where the stretch comes into play. Studded belts and headbands can complete your look, depending on what era of rock you are aiming to emulate.

Stretch fabric for halloween costumes

Stretch fabric for costumes available at

Genies are usually the subject of kids’ costume parties, but that doesn’t mean that adult genies aren’t fun too. Think of “I Dream of Genie” if you need a reference for that. For your genie look, you can use stretch fabric that hangs loosely on the body. The pants should be a bit on the poofy side, but the top can be short and tight. Feel free to go wild with colors since most genies are decked in bright blues, greens, pinks and metallics. Get some gold jewelry to complete the look and you’ll grant the wishes of all the people that pass by you this Halloween.

Witches are pretty popular around this time of year, but that doesn’t mean that the costume is any less fun to make. Get some black stretch fabric and some green body paint and just go to town. You can make your witch costume look like something sultry from the Renaissance era, or you could just make it a cloak to shroud your body. Either way, stretch fabric can easily come into play. You can even make your witch hat out of stretch fabric and wire if you want. That way you have the same material featured throughout our costume.

Pirates can be hot or they can be ugly. It just depends on which kind you want to be. In either case though, a flouncy shirt made from off white stretch fabric can be paired with an eye patch for an easy costume. Get some fake gold teeth and a parrot from a toy store and you will almost have your whole costume put together. Then all you need is some boots, some stretchy black pants and a sword to finish off the look. Gold is the choice metal when it comes to pirate jewelry, so dress up n some rings and earrings to truly put the final touches on this look.

March 22, 2010 Posted Under Uncategorized

Cosplay Costumes

Glossy stretch fabric

MJTrends: Shiny Stretch fabric

Cosplay costumes have been a big hit in Asian culture for years, but just recently they made their way to the western market and came with a big storm. This is mainly due to the sweeping popularity of anime that is now present in the states.

Americans seem to be swept away by the stories, drama, and lives of these animated characters, so it is only logical that people would want to develop costumes based on them. If you are part of the cosplay world, you should know that there are a lot of costumes out there that can be constructed from stretch fabric. This figure flattering and affordable alternative is easy to work with and quite versatile in this realm. Below are a few different cosplay ideas to inspire you.

Sailor Moon
Sailor moon became a popular series here in the U.S. several years ago. This cute but spunky character has an equally cute and spunky outfit that would work great in your next cosplay party. Stretch vinyl would be perfect for this look based on the overall silhouette the character portrays. You would need to construct a white and blue sailor suit with red bows to pull off the Sailor Moon attire, but you can find templates for this costume readily available online.

Kingdom Hearts Organization XIII
A Kingdom Hearts Organization XIII jacket can be made entirely out of PVC or stretch vinyl, and really all it consists of is a trench coat with a chain to accompany it. This hooded jacket has a zipper that goes from top to bottom, and it has deep pockets on the side.

If you’re a fan of the video game, you’ll love being able to make your own cosplay Kingdom Hearts Organization XIII jacket to cal your own. Surprisingly enough, this look is even a bit on the fashionable side, so you wouldn’t be crazy for making this part of your daily wardrobe as well. Of course, you would know the secret behind its origins.

The cute vests of Hatsune Miku can make great stretch fabric cosplay outfits. You can use polyester, stretch vinyl, PVC, or basically anything else you might desire. You just need the right colors and accessories.

The top itself needs to be silver, and then the sleeves and skirt need to be black with either green or red trim. Give yourself a matching tie and a set of knee-highs and you almost have a complete look.
All that is left is the pigtails and boot, both of which can easily be done.

Hatsune Miku’s nurse outfit can also make for a great cosplay look. Decked in all pink, you should be the talk of the anime party. You need a set of good, white buttons and some red trim to really tie things together, but for the base, you just need two shades of stretch pink fabric. Of course, keep the pigtails in mind for this look as well, and don’t forget the matching pink nurse’s hat. Finish everything off with those pink knee-highs and you’re all set.

Star Trek
To keep things a bit more American, you could always dress up like your favorite character from Star Trek. Captain Kirk’s yellow shirt could easily be made of stretch vinyl or even velvet if that was the look you wanted to achieve. You have to make sure to add the badge, of course, along with the black neckline and gold trim down at the bottom.

For the ladies, you can make a TNG Skant uniform from black blue fabrics. This will be a bit more difficult to construct when compared to the easy, long sleeve shirt for the men, but that’s to be expected with any female attire. Just make sure you know a bit of Kling-On before you go into any conventions.

Don’t Forget…
When you’re constructing a cosplay look, don’t forget about the wigs. Usually that’s what sends a regular person in a costume into someone actually portraying a character. With the Vocaloid costumes, for instance, it may be hard for you to make that headset and get that long blue hair without a wig. Just remember those finishing touches that put everything together.

Shiny vinyl stretch fabric

Stretch vinyl fabric available for purchase at

March 22, 2010 Posted Under Uncategorized

Fashions You Can Make with Stretch Vinyl

Stretch vinyl is an extremely versatile fabric that a lot of people take for granted. Whether you need to dress up for an occasion or you just want something comfy to hang out in, stretch vinyl can be a great fabric to work with. But perhaps you need a few ideas to get your mind rolling in the vinyl direction. Below are some different fashion looks that stretch vinyl can be incorporated in. Use them as a basis to elaborate on for your next fashion project.

Stretch fabric for fashion

Stretch vinyl available for sale at

Halter Tops
Halter tops are usually associated with nights out at the club or at a fun party. During those occasions, it is only expected that you look a bit on the sexy side. Stretch vinyl can be your venue for that sex appeal. This fabric works great for halter tops because it hugs the body and lifts the breasts to provide that perfect cleavage to turn a few heads.

Halter tops are also difficult to work with sometimes because they don’t go on like traditional shirts. The stretch of the vinyl allows you to easily slip the shirt over your head and head out with the girls.

Sexy Skirts
Skirts always look great in stretch fabric because they help emphasize the natural hourglass shape of a woman’s body. To work with stretch vinyl on a skirt, you might want to make sure that the pattern you use for the skirt is a bit longer than what you actually want the skirt to be.

Vinyl has a tendency to ride up over time, making them shorter than you might actually intend for them to be. If you don’t want to have to continuously pull your skirt down, you might just want to make the skirt a bit on the long side. Don’t make it too long of course; then it would lose its sex appeal. Just add an inch or two of leeway to the bottom.

Bands on Shirts
There is a reason why belts worn under the breasts came back in style recently – because women look good with bands above their waist. This again plays into the hourglass figure that every woman strives to portray with her outfits.

You can make a hot top out of whatever fabric you want, but then insert a belt of stretch vinyl right in the middle to create that empire waist sort of vibe. Just make sure that the vinyl that you use complements the colors and patterns featured throughout the rest of the top. This band should serve multiple purposes.

“Hot Pants”
Alright, you don’t have to actually make yourself some 80s hot pants, but the general idea of stretch pants is there. Stretch vinyl can look great in a pair of pants if the pants are shaped the right way. Sometimes a flouncy look works well, and other times, tight is right. It’s a matter of what works well on your body. Stretch vinyl is always comfortable, but it isn’t always in style.

Try to keep everything in neutral colors to avoid that hot pants vibe. Bright blues and reds are not exactly suitable for today’s fashion world. Keep that in mind when selecting the stretch vinyl you want to use to construct your pants.

Stretch fabric

Stretch fabrics available at

Strapless Tops
The stretch quality of stretch vinyl makes it perfect for strapless tops. This elasticity allows the shirt to stay up with little supports other than the cut of the shirt itself. Plus, this stretch quality allows for a sexier appeal than most other fabrics, again, as long as the cut is right. The thing you have to worry about with strapless tops is how to work in the built in bra.

If you have a light fabric, you may have to double up on it so you don’t show your bra, pants, or otherwise. Some stretch vinyl is very thin, so a double layer won’t hurt you regardless. You may need an elastic band on the top to keep the girls covered, but that can easily be sewn in along the way. The pattern that you use to construct the shirt should indicate what notions will be necessary. Worse comes to worse, add a few spaghetti straps and forget about it.

March 22, 2010 Posted Under Uncategorized
Stretch fabrics for sale by MJTrends