I was definitely obsessed with the preppy vibes this spring and summer and the comeback of the tennis skirt as an everyday basic. I fell in love with the Nike tennis skirt look; worn with crewneck sweaters, crew style socks, and white sneakers. It seemed like every girl had a white pleated mini skirt in every Instagram post and I wanted to be her. After looking up the famous Nike tennis skirt which was sold out or was being resold at extraordinarily high prices; I knew I had to try my hand at creating it myself. I wanted to have the Nike branding to keep that cool “it girl” vibe and I’ll be showing you have you can achieve that by leveraging an existing Nike garment.
In DIY-ing the tennis skirt I wanted it to be a functional piece. I decided to create a pair of shorts underneath. The skirt is in theory actually a skort, though completely optional, I do recommend it if you recreate it in white.
Not one to miss out on a matching moment, the full DIY tennis outfit wouldn’t be complete without a matching top. For part two, we will create a match sports bra to go with the tennis skirt using the leftover fabric from the leggings. [A tutorial is coming soon!]
I love how this DIY turned out! So much so, that I’m already planning to make a black version of this DIY tennis skirt for fall!
TIME | 3 hours-ish
COST | $
DIFFICULTY | Easy – Medium
What you’ll need:
- Nike leggings (I used XXL men’s leggings, they were the cheapest I could find on clearance)
- Matching knit fabric – a polyester base type fabric works best for at-home heat-set pleats
- Sewing machine
- Matching thread
- Iron with a steam setting
Skirt: one rectangular piece, 13″ x (2 x waist measurement to the nearest inch) + seam allowance
Inner shorts: I traced a pair of well fitted leggings to create the pattern. *Shorts are optional, I do recommend it for the white version of the skirt for more coverage
Waistband: leveraged from Nike leggings
- Remove the waistband from the leggings. Save the leggings and the logo to make a matching top in another DIY tutorial [coming soon!]
- Cut out one rectangular piece for the skirt and two pieces for the leggings from the matching knit fabric
- Measure and mark pleat measurements long the length of the rectangular piece following the pleating pattern provided above.
- Pin and press to heat set the pleats with an iron set to high with steam.
- Allow the pleats to fully cool for best setting practices.
- While the pleats are resting, assemble the shorts from the legging pieces. Sew the front and back seam of the leggings.
- Pull the shorts apart and line up the inner leg seams and sew along to finish off the shorts.
- Measure and cut the waistband to size leaving half an inch as seam allowance.
- Sew the waistband together, reinforcing the seam and sewing the seam allowance down flat.
- Tack down each pleat with dense stitches going 1/2″ – 1″ down the top of the pleat.
- With a straight stitch, sew the side of the skirt to form a tube.
- Sew the pleated skirt piece to the waistband with a zigzag stitch.
- Sew the shorts inside the skirt to the waistband with a zigzag stitch.