DIY Bandana Skirt

DIY Bandana Skirt

Hi there! There are few things my girls love more than a new, twirly skirt. The twirlier the better! I’m always looking for new ways to reuse clothing items that are worn out and give them new life in a cute and inexpensive way. So today I’m going to show you how to make this DIY Bandana Skirt! It’s twirly, cute, and doesn’t involve having to sew a waistband! It’s easy enough for a higher level beginning sewer, and for an intermediate or higher level sewer they can whip this together in less than 20 minutes. My girls wear these as every day fun skirts, but they’re also great for pirate costumes or 4th of July events! Let’s get started!

Check out my other super easy girl’s skirt sewing pattern while you have the sewing machine out!

DIY Bandana Skirt


  • Sewing machine
  • Old knit leggings or shorts with a good elastic waistband that fits your child.
  • 2-3 bandanas in colors you like. The more bandanas, the fuller it will be.
  • A bowl with a diameter of roughly 5 inches. A kids cereal bowl is great for this.
  • Pins
  • Scissors
  • Pencil

Note: My bandanas were 21 x 21 inches and cost $2 each at Michael’s, making the cost of this skirt only $6!

Start by taking your old pair of leggings or knit shorts. The ones I’m using used to be leggings, then were cut into shorts when my girls blew through the knees. Now they’re looking a bit raggedy around the bottom edges, so it’s time to breathe new life into them! The waistband still fits well, so we’re going to cut straight across just above the legs. This way we have a waistband with a length of knit material beneath it. Having a knit waistband allows you to add some extra length to the skirt and makes it very comfortable to wear. Now you’re going to lay out one of your bandanas. You can press it if you like, but I always throw my finished projects into the washing machine after I’m dine making them, so the wrinkles steam themselves out. Set your small bowl in the middle of your bandana, making sure it’s centered. Use your pencil to trace all around the outside of the bowl.

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See the circle? Next you’re going to draw a line straight down from the circle to the middle of one of the sides of the bandana. Since mine was folded so precisely, I just drew straight down one of the folds. Now just cut up the line and cut out your circle. Go ahead and repeat this with all 3 bandanas.

I’ll be referring to colors to make the directions easier, but again you can use whatever your favorite colors are! Place your blue and purple bandanas right sides together, and pin along one edge of the straight cut. If the edges aren’t even in length, make sure the flat edges are even and the circle edge is slightly off. We will fix this later. Sew this together with a 1/4 inch seam allowance. Open it up, and you’ll see that you have a big circle. Now place your pink bandana on top of the blue one with right sides together and repeat the process. You have a really big circle with one straight opening. Go ahead and sew those last two edges together.

Next you’re going to take your scissors and even out any mismatched edges on the inside of the circle. See how you end up with one big circle skirt out of three bandanas? Now we’re going to ruffle the inside of the skirt. Set the stitch length on your sewing machine to as long as it will go. Mine is normally at a 2.5 for standard stitching, and I take it up to a 5 for ruffle stitching. Start at the join of two bandanas, and backstitch to lock the thread in place. Then stitch all the way around the inside of the circle.

When you get to where you meet the beginning of your stitches, just stop sewing (don’t backstitch!!) and leave two long tails of thread. One of these is the top thread, and the other is the bottom thread. Leave the top thread alone, but start pulling the bottom thread. You’ll see the material start to bunch up. Slowly pull the bottom thread and work the fabric so it bunches all the way around the skirt opening like shown. Keep going until the diameter of the ruffled part matches the diameter of your knit waistband bottom. Go ahead and leave the bottom thread super long until after the next steps, and then you can just cut it off.

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With right sides together, pin your ruffled circle to the waistband bottom all the way around. I use a lot of pins for this part, since we’re sewing together two different types of materials. Place this into your sewing machine, making sure that the bandana fabric is on top, and that the knit underneath isn’t bunching up while you sew. Make sure to turn your stitch length setting back to normal! Now you’re going to sew all the way around the circle, just under the stitches you made to ruffle the skirt. Doing this hides those stitches inside the seam and locks the ruffles into place. When it’s all sewn, just trim your excess threads and turn it right side out.

You’re all done!! Isn’t it cute?? My daughter squeaked when she saw it because she was so excited!

You can wear it with the waistband showing for shorter shirts, or hide the waistband with a longer shirt.

And did I mention that it’s super twirly? I hope you enjoyed leaning how to make this super easy DIY Bandana Skirt with me!

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About the author

I'm a wife and mom of 3 kids, a blogger, beauty vlogger, graphic designer, and jill of all trades.

View all articles by Joanna Brooks

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