Monday, 14 July 2008

Easy peasy pants

I once taught Gib to make a pair of pants for himself, about 7 years ago when we were friends but long before we were going out. It was for some fancy dress party we were going to (he was being a pirate, I think). His pants then were made in exactly the same way I'm going to describe below. And it was in fact a guy who taught me how to make pants this way! More on guys and sewing here.

A bit crinkled -- I found them scrunched up in the top of the wardrobe! Can't believe they're still around!

Now times have changed and I'm the one making him a pair pants (coincidentally, these ones are blue and orange too!). They're bumming-around-the-house pants, so he can be comfortable while playing computer games, helping out in the kitchen (!!!) or while we're doing a bit of lounge room karate training. I picked up this awesome flannelette robot fabric when I absorbed a family friend's fabric stash. I am quite a lazy sewer so I like it when things don't have to be exact for them to work well, and these pants are perfect for hack sewers like myself.

How to make yourself a pair of comfy bumming-around-the-house pants in ~2 hours:


  • Take a pair of baggy pants. Turn them inside-out and fold them in half. Pull out the crotch so it sits flat.
  • Take your fabric, fold it in half. Lay your pants on the fold.
  • Cut around the pants, making sure you allow an extra 6 cm at the top for the waist and 6cm at the bottom for the hem. Follow closely to the inside leg, making sure you leave about 1cm for seam allowance (see pink line below). Be careful not to cut your pants too!
  • Cut the second leg out by tracing around the first leg you cut out, so that they are exactly the same.
  • Sew up the inside of the pant leg, from the point of the crotch to the bottom of the pant leg (see pink line -- sorry it's a bit dodgy!).
  • Pin and sew the crotch: This bit can be a bit confusing for me because my spatial skills arne't great. To help me visualise how I need to pin them, I turn the pant legs right side out. Take two corners from the top of each of the legs and pin them together. Continue to pin the pant legs along the U-shaped edge of the crotch to the back. When you are done you should have what looks like a pair of pants in front of you, with the seam of the pants on the inside (I have pinned and sewn them the wrong way so many times!). Turn the pants inside out again, for ease of sewing. Sew along the pinned crotch.
  • Make the waistband: fold the top of the pants down by 6 cm, and then tuck the edge of the waistband under again by 2cm. This means your waistband will be 4cm wide with 2cm tucked under so the raw edge won't be exposed. Iron and pin down. Sew along the pinned edge of the waistband, leaving a small gap (about an inch) through which you will insert the elastic. Top stitch around the top edge of your waistband: this help prevent the elastic in the waistband from rolling over while you're wearing the pants.
  • If you are adding back pockets, sew them onto the pants now. Take a piece of polar fleece, approximately 10 x 12 cm. Hem the top edge. Turn the remaining pocket edges under by 1 cm, pin down onto the pants, and then top stitch around the side and bottom edges of the pocket.
  • Insert the elastic into the waistband: Attatch a large safety pin to your elastic and thread it through the waistband. When it is pulled through, sew the ends of elastic together.
  • Hem the pant legs: as per the waistband, fold the bottom edge of the pant legs up by 6 cm, and then tuck the edge of the pant legs under again by 2 cm. Iron and pin. Sew down the hem.
Gib being a robot (a robot in need of a haircut)

Rear view, with pockets

3 comments:

Hoppo Bumpo said...

Hey, great tutorial. Very easy to follow and nicely illustrated with the photos. And I love the enthusiasm of your model!

CurlyPops said...

That's so cool! I love the modelling shots at the end...hilarious!

kt mac said...

You Miss are sooooooooo soooooooo super sweet!
I got my lovely little surprise parcel from you in the mail today!! It was so exciting and the apron fits like it was made for me! and I love the little book (I was so going to make one for myself after seeing you post the tutorial up!)

My other apron has still not arrived but this surprise was even better!

Thankyou so so much.. I wanna run down to Melbourne and give you a big hug hehe
I will post about it and put a picture of me wearing it up really soon.

ps. the pockets on these pants are a hoot!