Cleo Skirtalong Day 2: Cut out and prepare pattern pieces

Cut out your pieces / Cleo Skirtalong

Welcome to Day 2 of the Cleo Skirtalong! If you’re just joining us, see all of the skirtalong posts here.

Today it’s time to get to the fun stuff, starting with cutting out all of the pieces you need to sew Cleo!

The first thing you should do is fold the fabric in half on your cutting surface, lining up the selvage edges of the fabric as best you can. Gently smooth out any creases or wrinkles with your hands so that the two layers are completely flat. You should already have pressed your fabric with an iron, but if you need to do that to remove any remaining wrinkles, do that now.

Lay out all pattern pieces before cutting
I recommend that you lay out all of your traced pattern pieces on the fabric to visualize where they will go before you do any cutting. This also helps you make sure you have enough fabric before you start to cut. Line up the grainline arrows on the pattern pieces so they are parallel to the fabric fold/selvages.

Place your traced pattern pieces on the fabric as shown in the suggested cutting diagrams in your pattern. The cutting diagrams are found on pages 6 (View A) and 12 (View B) of the PDF, and on pages 4 and 5 of the printed pattern.

cut out your pieces

Time to cut!
Once you have your pattern pieces arranged the way you want them, pin your pattern pieces to the fabric or use pattern weights to hold them in place. Then carefully cut out your pieces, through both layers of fabric. I like to use a rotary cutter and mat because it goes quickly, but fabric shears are fine too.

You’ll also want to cut a piece of 1.25″ wide elastic using the chart provided on page 2 (PDF) or 12 (print).

Finally, cut out one front waistband from lightweight fusible interfacing.

For View A, you should have 1 front skirt, 1 front waistband, 1 front hem band, 1 back skirt, 1 back waistband, 1 back hem band, and two pockets, plus interfacing for the front waistband and your piece of elastic.


Remember to cut notches wherever they are indicated! This will make sewing the skirt easier later. Here’s the front waistband, for example, which has three notches on its lower edge:

Cleo skirtalong

For View B you should have 1 front skirt, 1 front waistband, 1 back skirt, 1 back waistband, and four pockets, plus interfacing for the front waistband and your piece of elastic.

For View B, sometimes I like to use a lining fabric for my pockets instead of the main fabric. My favorite lining fabric is cotton lawn, and I often use off-white or white.


Again, make sure you have the notches added to help you attach the pockets later:

Cleo skirtalong

Then using a fabric marker or chalk, add the two pocket dots to each side of the skirt pieces, above and below the pocket notch (note that this is not shown; we added the dots to the pattern pieces after I took these photos)!

Prepare the waistband and hem bands
Use your iron to attach the fusible interfacing to the front waistband according to the manufacturers instructions. I recommend putting a piece of muslin between your iron and interfacing, always.

Then press the front and back waistbands in half lengthwise down their centers to create a crease. That will become the top of the waistband. Then press 3/8″ toward the wrong side along the top edge of both waistband pieces.

Cleo Skirtalong: prep waistband

Finally, press the hem band pieces in half down their centers (View A only, not shown).

Now you’re ready to attach the pockets!
Go to Day 3

6 thoughts on “Cleo Skirtalong Day 2: Cut out and prepare pattern pieces

  1. Do you have any tips for interfacing rayon? I recently made a Cleo with the AGF rayon and used SF101 for the waistband like I do with other garments. When I washed it, the waistband got all bumpy, which I can only assume is related to the interfacing. Have you ever experienced this?

    • Yes I do! For garments, I don’t use Pellon (my experience is that it tends to lump up when it washes too). My friend Karen introduced me to the fashion interfacing from Fashion Sewing Supply and I’ve never turned back. Pam is a garment expert and her interfacings are SO GREAT!! For rayon, you’ll want to use the “pro-sheer elegance light” (I think? Read the descriptions!!).

      Hope that helps!!

  2. I’m behind already! (work), but I vow to catch up. Am posting for accountability 🙂 I’ve got my pattern all traced and fabric washed (was going to post a pic of fabric choice but don’t see an option) for View A. I’ve got a big work project to do this weekend, but I think some sewing time thrown in would be good for my mental productivity, right??

    • Yes, I think it would!! And yay!! So glad you’re joining in!! No worries about being “behind,” take it at your own pace whenever you are ready!


  3. What do you think about self-fabric interfacing this waistband? Could that work? My local fabric shop doesn’t have a kind of interfacing I think would work and I’m hoping to sew this up before a package would have time to arrive. 🙂

    • Hi Emily,

      Yes, that could definitely work. You just need to have something that offers some stiffness to help keep the waistband from scrunching down, if that makes sense.

      Hope that helps!!! Have fun!

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