The bad news about most old school European pattern companies is that seam allowance is not included. But every cloud has its silver lining, right? So the upside is that you can easily add the perfect amount of seam allowance for each seam. So that’s why I’ve experimentet quite a bit with seam allowances trying to find the optimal width for each situation.
In my last post, I talked about seam allowance on knits. And in this post I will talk about skirts. And when I say skirts I mean skirts in woven fabrics that has the seams pressed aside and not closed with an serger seam.
For the waist I find 1 cm to be the sweat spot, it’s not bulky and shapes well in curves, but still wide enough to be able to fold and top stitch on the inside of a waist band.
As for the side seams 1.5 cm matches the width of most zipper bands, with a little extra to be on the safe side. As I talked about in my last post, hem width depends heavily of the style of the skirt and material. A flimsy silk skirt with a round hem should have a narrow hem, while a straight pencil skirt in say wool flannel will looks nicer with a wider hem. The illustration here is for a classic skirt in a firmer material.
As you can see the waist piece side seams are also 1.5 cm, I like seam allowance to be that wide so that they can be turned in nicely when covering either a zip or be used with some type of closure. Because folding in a narrow seam allowance can be a quite fiddly experience.
So that is my personal primer on seam allowance for skirts. And note that the inches are roughly the same, give or take a millimeter or two here and there I would love if your shared your ideas on what the optimal seam allowance is in the comment section!