Gathered Bed Skirt DIY

The bedroom I’m redecorating is turning into something rather unexpected.  The four-poster bed from my MIL set the mood for some dressed up decor.

While I work on the finishing touches, I wanted to share a tutorial for making a gathered bed skirt.

For the base, I use an old bed sheet.  The flat sheet went through the dryer with Fun Son’s ink pen in the pocket of his shorts.  That was five or so years ago.  I saved it for an occasion just like this bed skirt!

Gathered Bed Skirt DIY

The border around the bottom is a wide stripe.  It was a good way to use another print in the collection for the room.

For this queen-sized bed, I used three widths of fabric for each side and two widths for the end.  My fabric is heavy and full-bodied, so for regular fabrics, I’d cut four widths for the sides and three for the end.  Cut the base fabric widths to your drop measurement minus 2 inches (for the contrast band) and add one inch back for ease.  You got that?

Drop measurement minus  2 inches for band plus  1 inch for ease

Cut the band strips at 5 inches.  Stitch the widths together – for main fabric and band.

Bed Skirt Fabric Cuts

Then stitch the border strip to the main strip.  Cut lining widths exactly to the measurement of the main fabric and sew widths together.  Stitch to the opposite edge of the banding fabric.

Lining for Bed Skirt

After sewing each seam, press everything nice and smooth.


Fold the skirt in half to align the lining behind the main fabric. Press and measure to be sure you have the drop measurement plus 1/2 inch for your seam to sew it to the base.  Trim any excess if needed (due to the ease we added).

Trimming to Length

Fold each end under twice for a double one-inch fold.  Press well.

Bed Skirt Side Hem

Top stitch or whip stitch by hand for a nice, custom finish.

Hand Stitching Hem

Cut the sheet to the width and length of the bed plus 1/2-inch for each seam allowance.  The top edge of the sheet has a nice finished edge for the header of the bed skirt.  That’s why I love to use sheets for this project!

Serge or zig-zag stitch along all edges of the bed skirt base (the sheet).

For the skirt, zig-zag stitch over dental floss 1/4 inch from the raw edge of each section.  Leave 4 inches of floss exposed at each end for drawing while gathering.

Stitching Dental Floss to Skirt

Fold each skirt section in half and half again.  Place a pin at each fold point.

Pins at Skirt Folds

Place pins at these points on your prepared base.

Pin Placement on Base

Pin the skirt of each section at the points on the diagram.

Gathering Skirt and Pinning

Draw the floss to gather evenly between the pins.  Add pins every two inches or so – to hold skirt secure while stitching.

Gathered Skirt for Sewing

Stitch each side and end piece.

Stitching Bed Skirt

At the corners where the sides meet the end piece, stop at 1/2 inch from the end as shown.  What a thready mess, eh?   A little trimming’s all it needs.


Gathered skirts are a little more work than a pleated bed skirt since you have more widths of fabric to manage.  But, they’re worth it when they fit a certain look your going for in your room.

Gathered Bed Skirt DiY

Don’t miss this update about the Romantic Room with Rod Pocket Panels.

Romantic Rod-Pocket Panels

Do you enjoy sewing new bedding?  Are you re-decorating any rooms?


125 px Signature


  1. teresa says

    Bedding is my favourite and I especially like gathered skirts with certain styles; such a soft and charming look. I often use a “continental shelf” so the white base doesn’t show, although I now skip the base part and velcro straight onto the boxspring. However, I change my bedding seasonally and change the skirt as well. I used to just layer them and tuck them up as need be and still do that on some beds. As my friends tell me, I am “ate up”!
    What a wonderful idea to use the dental floss to gather. I suppose any heavy string would suffice, as well. Love the direction this room is heading.

    • says

      Thank you, Teresa. I love your idea for attaching bed skirts. I abandoned that idea years ago whenever I changed the sheets and accidentally un-tucked the skirt every time. Do you sew velcro to the box spring or use the stick-on? I covered my eyes (ears) as I read the part about changing your skirts seasonally. Don’t tempt me to go there! (I agree with your friends. Ha!)

    • says

      Thank you. The curtain fabric has brown in them, too. That was the main reason for the bed skirt trim – and the fact that I found the remnant and couldn’t resist. You know! 🙂

    • says

      Thanks! I haven’t made a gathered bed skirt in a long time. I’ve preferred the tailored styles. It’s funny how the mood of a room can change your mind. 🙂

  2. says

    Wow that bed skirt looked amazing! I should really get into DIY a little more since these things don’t come cheap in stores! Thanks for sharing this tutorial, definitely bookmarking it!

  3. terri says

    Are you using an old bedskirt to attach the new skirting to. I am not much at sewing but I need a longer dust ruffle. Ty