Carefully cut open each tube by cutting off each end and cutting a slit down the side. Clean and flatten each tube.
Cut each tube to 5” wide by 5” tall. If your tubes are smaller than this, then cut them to the maximum size that you can. Cut all of your tubes to the same dimension.
Use binder clips to clip 2 tubes together with the right sides facing each other. Sew along the clipped side and fold open. Repeat with 2 more tubes making a strip of 4 tubes. Cut this strip so it’s 16” tall. Reserve any scraps for the waistband in step 14. Sewing with toothpaste tubes works best when your sewing machine is on a wide stitch setting.
Repeat step 4 for your remaining tubes. You should now have 14 strips of 4 tubes each.
With the right side facing up, take your scoring tool and score each strip at 2”, 2.5” and 4”. Fold along the score lines so that the 2” and 4” folds are mountain folds and 2.5” fold is a valley fold. These will be your pleats.
Now you’re ready to start constructing your skirt. Take 2 strips of 4 tubes and clip them together lengthwise with the right sides facing each other. Sew along the clipped side.
To sew down the pleats, start at the top of each pleat and sew down 4.5”. It’s best to sew down the pleats as you go before your toothpaste tube fabric becomes too unwieldy.
Repeat steps 7 and 8 for the remaining strips. You will now have one long pleated sheet of toothpaste tubes.
Hold the pleated toothpaste tube sheet around your waste for sizing. Make sure it fits properly. Trim off any excess, but leave an extra inch for seam allowance for setting in the zipper. Reserve any scraps for the waistband in step 14.
Now you’re ready to set in the zipper. Fold .5” in on each end. Clip the zipper onto one edge and stitch it into place.
Open the zipper and clip the other side of the zipper onto the open edge. You won’t be able to turn the skirt inside out, so the easiest way to sew in the zipper is to run it the length of the skirt.
Once the zipper is set in, zip it up and cut off any excess zipper at the bottom. Run a couple of stitches along the bottom of the zipper so you don’t risk zipping the skirt apart.
To create the waistband, sew together scraps into a long strip that are about 2” longer than the length of the top your skirt and about 1.5” wide. My skirt was about 27” along the top, so I made a strip that was 29” long by 1.5” wide.
Measure and fold in each edge by .25”. Then fold in half lengthwise.