Make a custom bed skirt using vintage linen tablecloths you have thrifted from local auctions or your own linen closet. Many vintage tablecloths have beautiful edgings or needlepoint insets that would be very expensive if purchased as new, off-the-bolt fabric. Using them as bed skirts is a frugal way to get a custom look for less.This tutorial is for a bed that has a floor-standing foot board with no opening at the bottom of the foot board. If your foot board is open at the bottom see the note at the end of the instructions for changes.
Things You Will Need:
Fabric to fit box spring surface
Thrifted linen tablecloths
Measure the top surface of your bed’s box springs and add 1/2 inch to the width and length. Cut scrap fabric or an old sheet using this measurement. This is your box spring cover. This fabric will lay between your box springs and mattress and will not show when the bed skirt is finished. Color and design matches are not necessary. Use what you have available.
Since you will only be attaching the skirt on the sides of your bed, sew a 1/4-inch hem on the top and bottom edges of the box spring cover.
Measure the distance from the top of the box spring to the floor. Measure from the headboard to the foot board and double it. Cut enough strips from your thrifted tablecloths to piece together two strips using these measurements. When cutting your strips, one long edge should be the decorative or finished edge of the tablecloth. This will allow you to showcase the edge on your skirt and will eliminate the need for hemming.
If the short ends of your pieced together skirt strips were cut, hem the ends using a 1/4-inch hem. I was close enough to the length I needed for my strips to incorporate the finished edge of the tablecloth into the ends of the skirt. No hemming was required.
Starting on one short end of one strip, place the long raw edge of the strip under your presser foot. Knot the end of crochet thread and insert the thread under the presser foot and on top of the fabric edge. Position the knot behind the presser foot. Set your sewing machine on a wide, long zigzag stitch. Zigzag over the thread along the entire length of the fabric strip. At the end, cut the crochet thread and knot the end. The zigzag stitch has created a casing over the thread. Repeat this step on the remaining skirt strip.
Right sides facing, lay a fabric strip on top of the box spring cover with the zigzagged edge on one long, raw edge of the cover. Pin the beginning and the end of the zigzagged edge to the beginning and end of the cover’s edge. Grasp one knot of the crochet thread and pull to gather the skirt. Pin the gathered edge to the cover’s edge. Sew using a 1/2-inch seam allowance. Cut the knot on the crochet thread and pull it out. Repeat with the remaining strip on the other long edge of the box spring cover.
This is the most difficult step of the entire project, depending on the size of your bed. You will need a helper. Remove the mattress from your bed. Lay the fabric box spring cover over the box spring and arrange the skirts on the sides of your bed. Replace the mattress on top of the box spring without shifting the cover.
This skirt tutorial is for a bed with a foot board that has no opening from the top to the bottom. If you foot board has raised feet, you will want to add a skirt section for the end of the bed. If this is the case, do not hem the end of the box spring cover, and do not connect the corners of the skirt with the side skirt sections.