Tribute Bandanna Skirt

Colorful hanging bandannas This past weekend, I went to Virgin Fest. A two day, two stage, music festival deal. It was a blast to see so many bands rock out to a very enthusiastic crowd.

The neat thing about Virgin Fest, is that they are committed to being as green as possible. They had a whole exhibit based on their efforts, called the Green Spot. At the exhibit you learned that all of the paper products, t-shirts and other “merch” were sourced from organic cotton, recycled content and corn based plastics. Generators used biofuels and composting bins were placed next to recycle bins.

It was wonderful to know that even though music festivals are large events, small changes can make a big difference. But what really got me going was an awesome bandanna skirt that I spotted in the crowd.

It was clearly handmade and loved by the wearer (sorry no pix!). It was constructed out of old band bandannas that had been obtained from said corresponding concerts. It was a wonderful reuse of materials that were crafted into a wearable memento.

So here’s how to make your own tribute bandanna skirt as well as some other ways to use old bandannas:

To make a bandanna skirt you can use the following two A-line skirt tutorials; one from craftgrrl that uses paper to help make a pattern and a pattern-less tutorial from Dana. Use them as loose guides when shaping the skirt but the main thing is to get a base fabric by sewing your bandannas together and measuring to get the right fit.

To get your base fabric you can follow the outline on the right, (excuse my Painter skills!) and sew along the edges of your bandannas. You will need to cut some in half to make the bottom and top work out. Dana’s tutorial finishes the waist with some elastic for sewing beginners. Craftgrrl refers to using a zipper for finishing, but that is definitely for the more advanced sewers among us. outline of bandanna skirt pattern

With a little bit of re-imagining, your skirt will come out awesome and ready to rock. Pair it with your vinyl wrist cuff to really show your DIY side.

Here are some other amazing ideas for reusing bandannas:

Have other ideas for bandannas? Leave ’em in the comments!

[Image credit: gazelystare under creative commons license]

Written by Kelly Rand

Kelly covers visual arts in and around Washington, DC for DCist and is editor of Crafting a Green World. Kelly has also been published by Bust Magazine and you can find her byline at Indie Fixx and Etsy’s Storque and has taught in Etsy’s virtual lab on the topic of green crafting.

Kelly helps organize Crafty Bastards: Arts and Crafts Fair, one of the largest indie craft fairs on the east coast and has served on the Craft Bastard’s jury since 2007. Kelly is also co-founder of Hello Craft a nonprofit trade association dedicated to the advancement of independent crafters and the handmade movement. Kelly resides in Washington, D.C. and believes that handmade will save the world.


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  1. I love this idea- I actually like the ones with all the pointed hanging edge that make it look like a colorful fairy skirt. I saw this done with silk scarves being sold for so much $$$, and I have really wanted to make one ever since!

  2. Love the look and the idea. Especially the concept of garment mementos. With a little creativity you can really run with the concept and use all kinds of neat fabrics to create your own one-of-a-kind a-line with a history all its own. Thanks for the artical!

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