Published on February 19th, 2013 | by Julie Finn


How-to: A Hoop Skirt Made from Wire Hangers

wire hanger hoop skirt tutorial (1 of 1)

Wire hangers may not be suitable for actually hanging your clothes, but for internal structure they’re actually pretty great. The wire in wire hangers is quite strong, malleable enough to be formed into shape but not so malleable that it’s easily warped once in place, and can be cut with a sturdy pair of wire cutters.

Using nothing but wire hangers, hot glue, and duct tape, I created a hoop skirt for a garment that I’m making my kiddo to wear in this year’s Trashion/Refashion Show in our town. Here’s how:

The wire hanger hoop gives the skirt its structure.

The wire hanger hoop gives the skirt its structure. This isn’t the fashion show garment, but it has the same shape.

1. Freecycle yourself some wire hangers. With one email, I scored wire hangers from someone who gets a lot of dry cleaning done, the manager of a thrift store, and a couple of other friendly random people.

2. Untwist and straighten each hanger. I used both pliers and my fingers, and yep–my fingers were sore the next day!

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About the Author

I'm a writer, crafter, Zombie Preparedness Planner, and homeschooling momma of two kids who will hopefully someday transition into using their genius for good, not the evil machinations and mess-making in which they currently indulge. I'm interested in recycling and nature crafts, food security, STEM education, and the DIY lifestyle, however it's manifested--making myself some underwear out of T-shirts? Done it. Teaching myself guitar? Doing it right now. Visit my blog Craft Knife for a peek at our very weird handmade homeschool life; my etsy shop Pumpkin+Bear for a truly odd number of rainbow-themed beeswax pretties; and my for links to articles about poverty, educational politics, and this famous cat who lives in my neighborhood.

3 Responses to How-to: A Hoop Skirt Made from Wire Hangers

  1. I have to confess that my favorite part of this was the math in the middle. My inner nerd loves doing sewing math!

  2. cake says:

    yeah, i too am impressed with the math. i think i would just make a big circle, and a little circle the size of the waist, then just kind of hold it in place, or have someone else hold it, while i measured the size the rods needed to be. but then, that’s why yours worked out on the first try, with probably very little cussing and extra wire cutting.

    i would also probably use some needle nose pliers to bend a loop in the ends of the wire, to secure it to the hoops, before applying the glue and tape. I don’t have the faith in hot glue that you do. but then again, you have worked with it WAY more than i have, so you know what its strengths and limitations are.

    • Julie Finn says:

      Ooh, I SHOULD have used needle nosed pliers! I’d have needed to add the extra length on before I cut the wire, but once the loop is formed, I could have used regular pliers to squeeze it closed against the wire hoop. If it was firm enough, you might not even need to glue it, but I’d probably still wrap that end in duct tape just in case of pokes.

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