You might remember this post I did a few months ago where I made some pyjama pants for Anna from some vintage flannel I had? I make most of my pjs, track pants and basic shorts using the same method, so I thought I do a tutorial and share! This project should take you less than an hour.
You need –
Fabric – the amount will vary depending on the size of the pants or shorts you are making. Anna is a size 3 and I usually go for 1/2 metre/yard. Any fabric is fine – I have used flannelette, but in summer I use quilting cottons. Knits are lovely and comfy too. For track pants I use polar fleece, thicker sweater style knits. You could even upcycle from thrifted track pants or jumpers (sweaters)
–rotary cutter and mat
-sewing machine (or an overlocker / serger, which makes the project even quicker!)
–elastic for waist (I use 1″ wide)
– pair of pants that fit your child comfortably (but are not tight)
Take the pants and turn them inside out. Fold them in half so the long leg seams are aligned. Fold your fabric and lay the pants down on top so the long leg seam lies along the fold, as in the picture below.
Use your rotary cutter and cut as shown by the pink lines in the picture. My pink lines are straight, but you do need to follow the curve of the crotch seam.
If you are making shorts – either use a pair of shorts for your template, or fold your pants up to the desired length.
Use the piece you have just cut as the pattern for the second piece. Fold your fabric again, lay your first piece down, still folded, and cut the second piece.
Open them out and you will now have two pieces that look like this:
Lay the two pieces right sides together. Sew then overlock or zig zag the crotch seams, as marked in pink.
Pin your pants leg seams together then sew all the way around from ankle to ankle.
Overlock or zig zag your seams to finish.
Create a casing at the top of your pants for the elastic. If you are using your sewing machine, fold over 1/2cm, then fold over 3cm. (If overlocking – overlock raw edge, then fold 3cm) Make sure your elastic will fit, then stitch your casing, leaving a 3-4cm gap to thread your elastic through.
Use a safety pin or bodkin to thread your elastic through. Once threaded, overlap the edges and use your zig zag stitch to secure.Pull the waistband so all the elastic pops up into the casing neatly, then stitch up the hile in the casing.
As you can see, I like to add a little ribbon tag onto my pants. Even though both sides are identical, I find people (*ahem* my husband) get confused if they are dressing the kids and can’t work out where the back of the garment is, so the tag helps. I stitch it in when I sew the casing.
The final thing is to hem the ankles of the pants. Before you hem, pop them on your child or compare with the original pair of pants you used for the pattern, to make sure you get the right length.
Feels like I only made these pink pants and the frog pants yesterday. I’ve had this tutorial on the back burner for ages – they were actually made several months ago for winter. Now it’s August, and Anna has worn both pairs every night. Soon we’ll be ready to get out the lovely light cottons and make some shorts in time for the warmer weather.
If you make some pants using this tutorial I’d love you to share! Tweet me, post a picture to my facebook timeline, send me the link to your blog or upload a picture to my Flickr pool! I love seeing what people make from my tutorials, it makes my day!
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