Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Semi Harem Long Shorts w/Tutorial

I wanted to make my son a pair of harem pants.  It’s almost summer, so I wanted to try and turn them into shorts.  As regular shorts, it wouldn’t look right, and to be honest I wanted to cover his knees, since the poor kid keeps falling and hurting them so often.  So Semi Harem Long Shorts it is with his coordinating striped sleeveless shirt.

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First I used a pair of skinny pajama pants that fit him well as the base to my pattern.

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These pants happen to be made of two pieces sewn in the middle (meaning no side seam).  So I folded the fabric making sure the stretch went in the horizontal direction, and laid my pants pattern on top of the fabric.  I folded the pants up to where I thought I would want the length to be, keeping it a little longer knowing I could trim it later.  At first I kept a couple inches at top for a waist band.  I also knew I wanted them to have the drop crotch look, so I kept a little extra room in the crotch seam.

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After I cut out both sides, I had decided I was going to add a different colored waist band, so I cut the legs at the top of the waist at a slight diagonal so that the back of the pants would be higher than the front of the pants.

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I don’t have pictures of the next two steps in action, but I laid the two legs with right sides of fabric together and sewed each edge together to make the front and back seams. 

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Then I sewed the inner seam of the legs.

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The next step can be done in multiple ways.  You can leave the waist band longer and fold over the original color of fabric to created a casing and then add an elastic waistband.  You can add a different colored piece of fabric and fold that over to create a casing and then add an elastic waistband. 

Or my method was using a piece of black fabric that wasn’t as stretchy, it was more of an exercise type fabric (old yoga pants to be exact).  I knew it would most likely stay up on his waist without adding elastic.  I cut the fabric making it 2 inches wide and as long as the pant waist needed.  I sewed the band together making a loop.  I then tried the loop on my son, seeing it was still a little loose, I sewed it again making the loop smaller.

Then I placed right sides together and sewed the waistband to the pants.  My particular band was already hemmed, so I could use it as is.  If it wasn’t hemmed, I would have cut double the width similar to the next step for banding the bottom of the shorts.

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Before I banded the bottom of the shorts, I did try them on my son to make sure they landed where I wanted them too.  I did have to cut off a couple inches on the bottom of the shorts.  Basically I liked where the shorts landed, but I knew I was going to add a two inch banding, so I cut off two inches.

For banding the bottom of the shorts I cut pieces that were 4 inches in width and the length needed to match the bottom of the shorts.

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I then sewed the legs bands with the right side of the fabric together to make a circle.

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Then fold your circle in half, and sew the unfinished edge to the bottom of the short leg, making sure you have the right sides together.

At this point your shorts are done.  You could just as easily make these pants, you would just make them longer!

My son loves them as they seem to be super comfortable for him.  I guess they have plenty of room for his diaper!

If you wanted to embellish the shorts (add back pockets, add fabric lettering, fabric numbering, etc), I would do that prior to sewing any of the leg seams, as with a toddler size, there isn’t much room to sew anything once they are put together.  I have plans to stencil some numbers on the leg with fabric paint, which can be done afterwards.

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Please leave me a comment….if there is enough interest I will draft up a pattern.

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