The Forty Hour Christmas Tree Skirt

The Forty Hour Christmas Tree Skirt

I have a habit of going a little overboard and not just getting my feet wet, but rather jumping into the pool of creativity up to my neck! During the holiday season of 2013, I purchased about 3 or 4 yards of pretty shiny silver (sateen?) fabric. My intention was to bunch and sew the fabric into some sort of ruffly tree skirt, since it was going to be WAY cheaper and cuter than one I could buy in the store. (Seriously, why are nice looking tree skirts so expensive!?) Well, Christmas 2013 came and went, and our tree stood without a skirt to wear.

The year flew by and my folded pile of pretty silver fabric was strewn somewhere in my craft room that looked like the aftermath of hurricane Michael’s. Halfway through December 2014, I guess I realized that once again my Christmas tree was bare, and I should do something about it right quick! Now, while I am compelled to throw myself into complicated, time-consuming crafts and sewing projects, I wouldn’t dare plan ahead and give myself ample time. Everything has to be done at the last minute, or else I don’t find satisfaction in its completion, or something like that. Procrastination is my middle name. So, although I had committed to making two maxi skirts as Christmas presents, as well as etching glass pie plates and wood-burning handmade pie boxes to hold said pie dishes, I decided that my Christmas tree needed a skirt.

Originally, I had figured that I would bunch and tuck and sew my pretty silver fabric into some sort of a circular fashion. But then I got scared. I didn’t want to mess up my pretty silver fabric with some unplanned, un-patterned, cutting and sewing. So I got on Pinterest, obviously, and started searching for ruffly Christmas tree skirts. I found this D.I.Y. No-Sew Ruffle Christmas Tree Skirt tutorial on The Thinking Closet. It was sooo ruffly and beautiful in burlap, and I fell in love with it.

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Now, in her post, Lauren warns that this project is a doozy, but I of course had to make things more complicated by adding another foot in diameter, because obviously, in my overzealous mind, bigger is always better and not just more work. (That’s my Napoleon Complex kicking in) I also had to sew the strips of silver fabric so they didn’t fray.

I started cutting 3 1/2 inch strips of fabric with my rotary cutter, a mat, and a quilting ruler, and then I made a 1/4 inch hem on three sides of each fabric strip, where the edges of the fabric would show. I ruffled and pinned each strip to the felt, starting with the outermost layer.

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The un-hemmed side of the fabric strip was where I sewed it onto the felt, but I saved this step until I had a whole row finished.

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For almost every layer, the strip of fabric I was working with ended, and I had to start a new one. This was easy, since the ruffles hide any imperfections. I just folded the edge of the new piece of fabric into a ruffle and pinned it onto the end of the previous strip.

After a couple layers, I realized I needed A BUNCH more fabric, so I got 7 more yards of the pretty silver stuff at JoAnn. I also realized that this project was going to take DAYS to finish. So I abandoned my hopes to finish my tree skirt in time for Christmas 2014, and started working on the projects that I was going to give as gifts.

Fast forward five months. I have finally completed my tree skirt!! This past Memorial Day weekend gave me the chance to sew for two days straight. Here she is!!

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My back hurts and my fingers are healing from pin pricks. I am also coping with the emotional disturbance my sewing machine caused when it decided to break. Okay, well it’s not completely broken, but my foot pedal will only let me to sew at one speed – FAST! Although I must admit, it forced me to get pretty good at sewing those 1/4 inch seams at high speed!

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I just can’t stop staring at the pretty, shiny, silver ruffles… I think I’ll have Christmas in July.

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3 thoughts on “The Forty Hour Christmas Tree Skirt

  1. Oh my goodness, what a gorgeous tree skirt you have created! I absolutely LOVE the silvery fabric and how professional it looks considering you stitched it all. Well worth the hours upon hours of labor, pin-pricks, and even wear and tear on your machine. Hopefully it isn’t too hard to fix that pedal issue…though I love your ability to see the glass half full, even there. So glad you were able to find some initial inspiration in my Burlap Ruffle Tree Skirt, but that you made it your own. And didn’t give up! Christmas in July it shall be!

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      1. Thank you so much for including me in your Reader Showcase! I love the post and seeing what your other readers have been working on!!

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