Tropical Wrap Dress maxi dress pattern hack

Tropical Wrap Dress maxi dress pattern hack


Oh wow, on my summer sewing list for sure. Free pattern and tutorial on how to make this tropical wrap maxi dress pattern.

The most downloaded pattern from So Sew Easy is the Wrap Dress. It came second in the Craftsy best pattern award some years ago when Craftsy was still a thing and at the time of writing has been downloaded more than 100,000 times!  If I had a dollar for each one….. 😉

Wrap dress pattern - free sewing pattern. Easy to sew and great looking wrap dress - everyone should have at least one of these. From So Sew Easy.

So when I wanted to sew a tropical maxi dress, this pattern immediately sprung to mind.  Sometimes you just don’t need to mess with a good thing!  I bought this amazing ITY knit print from Fabric Mart (sadly now sold out) and it’s just perfect for island life.  But I wanted to make just a few changes:

  1. Maxi dress rather than knee length
  2. Enough room to walk properly in the longer skirt
  3. Loose flutter sleeves
Oh wow, on my summer sewing list for sure. Free pattern and tutorial on how to make this tropical wrap maxi dress pattern.

We looked before at skirts when we made the Perfect Maxi Skirt.  If you take a straight skirt that is hip width and then simply extend it down to the floor, you won’t be able to walk properly, you’ll only be able to move your legs as wide as your hips.  This works OK in a knee-length skirt but not in a maxi.

How to make the perfect fitting maxi skirt without it being too flared or too tight.

At the same time, we don’t necessarily want to add a lot of volume to the skirt all over so there is more fabric at the waist and hip to be gathered in. So I used the same idea on the Perfect Maxi Skirt to extend and increase the flare slightly on the Wrap Dress skirt.  I also made sure to use the whole width of my fabric too.

Oh wow, on my summer sewing list for sure. Free pattern and tutorial on how to make this tropical wrap maxi dress pattern.

I changed the shape of the sleeves to give them a looser more summery look too.  Both are very simple changes you can make to this, or any pattern, to change up the look.  I’ll show you how to do these simple pattern hacks in the video below.

The video below covers the two different pattern hacks to convert the wrap dress into a maxi with flutter sleeves and also has the full sewing step by step too.  So if you’ve not yet made the original wrap dress, there are some pointers here that might be useful.  It’s a very quick and easy-to-sew dress, has optional elastic at the waist and I’ll be wearing mine everywhere!

Oh wow, on my summer sewing list for sure. Free pattern and tutorial on how to make this tropical wrap maxi dress pattern.

Pattern hacking the Wrap Dress into a Maxi Dress Pattern

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Oh wow, on my summer sewing list for sure. Free pattern and tutorial on how to make this tropical wrap maxi dress pattern.

Useful links:

If you want to see the step-by-step sewing instructions in word and picture format, these are included in the pattern download and are also in the original article about the wrap dress here.

Oh wow, on my summer sewing list for sure. Free pattern and tutorial on how to make this tropical wrap maxi dress pattern.

Give this one a try, I think you’ll like it.  Or start out with the original Wrap Dress too.  Either way, please do come share what you sew in our sewing chat group on Facebook.  24hr sewing chat, inspiration and sharing – on all sorts of sewing activities!  We can’t wait to see what fabric you use for your maxi dress.

Download the free Wrap Dress Pattern

Wrap-dress-009---v-small

As usual, to make downloading easy and reliable, the pattern is hosted in my design account with Payhip. If you don’t already have an account, you will need to sign up to download, but don’t worry, it’s free, quick and easy. Add the pattern to your cart, and then checkout – no payment/address details etc needed.

Download multi-size pattern pieces from my design account at Payhip…

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Oh wow, on my summer sewing list for sure. Free pattern and tutorial on how to make this tropical wrap maxi dress pattern.

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Bra Strap Tutorial, Easier Than You Think

Bra Strap Tutorial, Easier Than You Think


This bra strap tutorial will be useful for a few of our past and future patterns.  So, I do not want to repeat myself and will be referring back to this tutorial for a few more patterns since the season of parties is just about to start.

Bra straps can be in many widths.  The most important detail is to match the width of the slider and ring with the elastic.

This bra strap tutorial is one of the tutorials that you will need to finish the camisole top that I shared with you last week.

Anatomy of a Bra Strap

Bra Strap Tutorial

The slider: The slider has two holes and a bridge.

The ring:  The ring can be oval or round and it is used to attach the strap to the back of the bra.

Materials

  • Two Sliders
  • Two Rings
  • 42″ of bra elastic or a strap in the width of the slider and the ring

Tools

Sewing machine or a hand needle.

How to Assemble a Bra Strap

Cut the elastic in half making two strips of 21″ each.

Cut 2.5″ off from each strip, leaving the longer strip at 18.5″ and the shorter one 2.5″.

Insert the elastic under the first hole

Over the bridge through the other hole.

Sew using a small zigzag

Thread the ring and pass the end of the strap under the first hole making sure the other end of the strap with the slider is facing down.

Pass the strap over the bridge and through the other hole. Thread the small piece of the strap you cut earlier through the ring.   This end will be sewed to the back.  This part back trap can also be replaced by a strap made with the same material of the top you are making or a ribbon.   The other end will be sewn to the front of the top or a bra.

Where to use this bra strap tutorial?

My favorite place is for silk camisoles and bralettes. Following are some more patterns where you will need this tutorial.  As always if you need any clarification, have comments, or have any tip to add to this tutorial, please leave them in the comments section below.  Until next time, happy sewing!


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Elastic Waist Linen Shorts – Almost A One Hour Project

Elastic Waist Linen Shorts – Almost A One Hour Project


elastic waist linen shorts

This elastic waist linen shorts project is something that has been requested by quite a few of you by email.  I appreciate the kind request.  Sometimes I forget that the majority of the readers of this blog are beginners.  So sometimes I need to dial back my impulses and to simplify the projects.  However, that does not mean that we are going to be making an ugly pair of shorts, nor will I be promising that you can make it in two stitches, and just by magic you’ll have a pair of elastic waist summer shorts like so many videos on YouTube promise.

elastic waist linen shorts

These shorts are designed to be worn over your swimming suit, to hang around the pool and garden, or relax on the terrace.  Be sure to make them in linen or good quality, loose weave cotton so they can drape on your hips and be worn through the summer comfortably.

elastic waist linen shorts

Please have a look at my fabric suggestions, they are the four pictures that look like advertising, you do not need to buy from that site although it helps me with the affiliate program to keep going at giving you free patterns.  At least please read the type of fabric and the description so you know what I am talking about.  This part is often forgotten, yet it is crucial to use the right fabric to be successful in the project.

elastic waist linen shorts

These elastic waist linen shorts have a type of slanted patch pockets.  Yes I know, I had to go and add a little challenge for you.  How else can we make it more interesting?  The pockets are optional of course and can be subbed out for any of your choosing.

elastic waist linen shorts

Materials

  • 3/4 to 1 yard of 56″ linen (see fabric suggestions below)
  • Thread to match
  • A small strip of fusible interfacing for the pocket facing
  • 1 1/2″ elastic, enough to go around the waist of the shorts
  • 3/8″ cotton cord, the amount depends on our waist plus 16″
  • Two large beads with a 3/8″ hole

Tools

  • Sewing machine or hand needle
  • Scissors
  • Pins

Sewing Level:  Advanced Beginner

You should have knowledge of grain line, seam allowance, how to sew a straight stitch, and some knowledge of fitting to your own body shape.

Fitting your shorts: the most important detail is that the waist stretches as far as the widest part of your hips and the elastic rests comfortably around 1″ above your belly bottom.

Do you need to make the shorts larger?  Then check out the first part of the Walking Shorts sew along where I go into detail on how to do it.

Walking Shorts Pattern & Sew-Along – Part One

Fabric Suggestions From Fabric.com

How To Print Your Elastic Waist Linen Shorts Pattern

Use Adobe Reader to download and print the pattern.  Print on Landscape and use the Actual Size setting.  Do not scale at all.

How To Download Your PDF Pattern

We’re going to continue to use the new PayHip Webstore to distribute our patterns. As most readers know, Craftsy (Bluprint now) is closing and they have stopped designers like us from publishing new patterns on their site, so we’ve had to move to another service.

Our patterns are still free, but now you now have the option of making a small contribution if you like our work! We’d really appreciate it and it will help is keep going with new and fun designs like this. Even a dollar or two really goes a long way. Maybe you don’t know it takes an average of 26 hours of work to make a post and that does not include a video.

Thanks so much in advance for helping us out. You can use any credit card and you don’t need to have a PayPal account, although you can certainly use one if you have one.

Pattern Download

Download HERE

Pattern Layout

elastic waist linen shorts

Body Measurements

Size Waist Hips Length
S 27-29″ 33-35″ 15 1/4″
M 29-31″ 35-37″ 15 3/8″
L 31-33″ 37-39″ 15 1/2″
XL 33-35″ 39-41″ 15 5/8″

How To Sew Your Elastic Waist Shorts

The seam allowances are not included in this elastic waist shorts pattern, so please add an amount according to your level of skill, beginners 5/8″ and everyone else 3/8″.

Sewing The Pockets

Iron a piece of fusible interfacing on the facing of the pockets.  If you do not have fusible interfacing you can use a piece of thin cotton fabric.  We are trying to stop the pockets from gaping since the opening is on a bias.

elastic waist linen shorts

elastic waist linen shorts

Fold the facing and stitch the facing down using a double stitch.

elastic waist linen shorts

Follow the steps in the photo below.  The amount of fold will depend on your seam allowance. elastic waist linen shorts

  1. Fold the corner
  2. Fold the bottom of the pocket
  3. Fold the side
  4. Align the side of the pocket with the side of the front of the pants and stitch the pocket down very close to the edge.

elastic waist linen shorts

elastic waist linen shorts

elastic waist linen shorts

elastic waist linen shorts

Topstitch again 1/4″ from the first stitch line.  Repeat on the other side.

elastic waist linen shorts

Joining The Fronts Together

Place front sides together and sew just a little past the curve.

elastic waist linen shorts

Joining The Backs Together

Sew the two backs together ending a little past the curve.

elastic waist linen shorts

Serge all the seams including the hem and iron open the inseams.

Sewing The Front And Backs Together

Here is where I change the print of the fabric.  If you have been following me on Instagram you would have seen some carving on linoleum to make prints for sharing with you guys.

Place front and back print side together, then sew the sides together using the seam allowance you have chosen.

Sew the inseam on each leg.

elastic waist linen shorts

Sew the rest of the crotch closed, making sure to keep the seam allowances of the legs open.

elastic waist linen shorts

Making The Waistband And The Hem

Measure the waistband on your shorts.

elastic waist linen shorts

Take the measurement of the waist of the shorts X 4″.  Iron the strip lengthwise.  Sew the strip to form a band.  You need to divide the band in four, front back and sides.

elastic waist linen shorts

Pin the waistband placing the seam on the back.  Sew the waistband from the outside to the inside.   Sew the band from the outside to the inside.

elastic waist linen shorts

Attach a small amount of fusible interfacing on the front of the band and either insert some grommets or make two buttonholes to be able to add a cord to your elastic waist linen shorts.  Make a band with the elastic.  The amount of elastic depends on your waist, but make sure that the elastic is large enough to go over your hips.

Insert the elastic through the pants.  Please watch the video on How To Make Short Pajamas from minute 10:40 to 13:00.  Here is the link https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2P_idySKaiY

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2P_idySKaiY

Pin the band to the edge you have already sewn.

elastic waist linen shorts

Start sewing the band at the back of the shorts.  Put the needle down and pull the waistband front and back.  Be careful not to catch the elastic.

elastic waist linen shorts

elastic waist linen shorts

Finally, fold the hem up 1″ and sew.  Insert the cord and iron your shorts!

I hope that you can make good use of these elastic waist linen shorts since so many of you guys have been asking for a pattern like this one.  The perfect top to go with them is the linen V-top which is also a free pattern.

Thanks for reading, And Until Next Time, Happy Sewing!

Need a pair of dressy shorts? Something more elegant to get back to school perhaps? Try the ones below.  Or maybe you want some walking shorts, these ones are a three-part sew-along starting by altering the pattern to fit your body.

Women’s Dressy Shorts Pattern – Great For All Ages And Seasons

recycling old placemats

 

elastic waist linen shorts


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How to print a layered PDF file

How to print a layered PDF file


I'm going to save so much ink and paper now I know how to use a layered PDF sewing pattern and just print the size I want.

Software for creating sewing patterns is improving all the time. As I invest in some of the new and rather pricey software and the training that goes with it, I’m hoping to create better patterns for you.

One of the improvements you’ll see coming up is what’s known as a ‘layered PDF file’. In easy terms, this simply means that the different sizes are all within the same file but at the same time, they are separated onto different layers so you can choose to turn them on and off.

I have a new pattern coming out for you tomorrow and this will be the first with the new layered PDF design so it’s going to be helpful for me to show you how that works, as you might not have seen one before – and it’s cool!

How to print a layered PDF file

Firstly, make sure you are using the latest version of Adobe Reader so you can take advantage of all the super-cool tools. If you need to upgrade, you can do so here.

Then open your PDF file in Adobe Reader. Sometimes you can open a PDF file in your internet browser, but that might look ok on the screen, but usually, you’ll end up with some problems when you print – so stick to opening the PDF with Adobe Reader for best results.

page 2

This is what the file looks like. We are looking at page 2 here so you can see all of the pattern lines for the different sizes. Now this pattern has a lot of sizes and where they overlap it can be pretty crazy and hard to follow your right size.

The good news is that with this new improvement you can turn off the sizes you don’t need to print and just see the size you need. This saves you eye strain and printer ink and just makes the whole thing a lot easier to see.

To select the layers you want to see and print, go over to the menu with little icons on the left-hand side here.

layers

Pick the icon that looks like one sheet of paper on top of the other – that is the layers tool. Now you can see all of the separate layers in your pattern. These will usually correspond to your sizes.

There will usually be one layer that has all of the ‘fixed’ information on it, such as the test square, size chart, pattern piece names, descriptions, and so on.  In our example, this is called ‘Print for all sizes‘.  Then there are the size layers, one layer for each size from 34-56 inches.  Next to the layers is a little icon that looks like an eye.  You can click here to turn each layer on and off, so you can see it, or not see it.

layers-2

Here is the same page 2.  I’ve kept on the standard layer and also the layer for size 40-inch hips and turned off all the other layers.  Look how much easier and cleaner that is!

size-40

It really comes into its own when you have lots of pattern grading lines close to each other.  This is page 9 before and after.  It would be difficult to follow all those close lines to find your correct size on the before, but it’s a breeze when you turn off the layers you don’t need.  A breath of fresh air.

phg 9

Now you don’t have to turn layers on and off, you can of course just print it as standard with all the layers if you want to.  But why waste ink and print out that maze of lines if you don’t need to!

How to print the layered pattern – only the layers you want

Once you have your layers selected and displayed or not displayed, it’s time to print. Up at the top menu, select File, then Print, and up comes the print preview box.  Let’s scroll through to that page 9 again and check what layers we can see.  Perfect, just the size we want and the standard layer with our test square, etc.

print-preview

Make sure you have selected Actual Size as the print option so that there isn’t any scaling of the pattern.  Don’t select Fit to page or Shrink Oversized Pages. You can use the arrows under the preview on the right to see all of the pages.  If you are printing a smaller size, you might scroll through and find that you don’t even need to print all of the pages.  See here that the size 40 doesn’t have any lines on page 6, although the larger sizes do.  So you can choose not to print any pages you don’t need, therefore saving you paper and ink.

pg-6

Hit print, check out the picture of what the assembled pattern should look like, and then trim or fold your edges so the pieces match up. This pattern has circles in the corners.  Four pieces of pie make a circle.

Moved-to-tiers-skirt---jpg

How to grade between sizes

What if you are printing a dress pattern and need to grade between sizes, maybe size  C at the bust and size D at the hip.  Well, that’s easy too.  When you select the layers, select the two sizes you need and only those will print off, allowing you to easily see where you need to transition between the sizes.

transition

And that’s it.  You can now print out the pattern just in the size you need.  Earlier patterns don’t have this feature, but the future ones should.  Every little bit helps.


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Shirring Without Elastic Thread | So Sew Easy

Shirring Without Elastic Thread | So Sew Easy


shirring without elastic threadSo what is shirring anyway?

In preparation for a new project this week, I want to introduce you to a technique called shirring (which is sometimes known as smocking) with a simple practice tutorial.  According to Wikipedia, “shirring is two or more rows of gathers that are used to decorate parts of garments, usually sleeves, bodice or yoke.”  With shirring, the gathers can be both decorative as well as functional since elastic can be used to draw in the gathers giving the garment more give to accommodate different sizes.

Most techniques you’ll see around will show you how to do shirring with elastic thread.  Personally, I think that technique has some significant limitations, so I’m going to show you how you can do shirring without elastic thread and using normal elastic.  When you use elastic thread, this thread can irritate wearers with sensitive skin.  Also, to use elastic thread you need to wind the thread onto the bobbin of your sewing machine and it can sometimes cause problems with the machine because the thread stretches.  Finding correct thread tension can be a challenge.

Lighter fabrics work best for shirring.  You’ll need to use really strong elastic if you’re planning to try to gather thick and heavy fabric like denim.  For more Tips for Sewing Denim, please review this tutorial.

Shirring without elastic thread

Shirring without elastic thread is a technique that calls for a bit of patience, but the payoff is fantastic!  This technique is best used on garments that will be close to the skin like pajama pants, children’s clothing or corset-inspired tops where the person that wears the garment has sensitive skin and is bothered by elastic rubbing against the skin.  Shirring without elastic thread allows for a bit of movement and room to breath, while also making the garment last much longer than when using elastic thread.  For best results, it is better to use 1/4″ or 3/8″ elastic.  You can use thinner, of course, but that will depend on your fabric and the design you have in mind.

Where to use shirring without elastic thread?

This type of shirring does not give you a lot of elasticity if you use a thick fabric like damask or brocade, but it will give you the support needed for evening gowns, crop tops, and soft corset tops that do not require a lot of boning.  With cotton lawn fabric and 1/4″ elastic, you can make a very soft and glorious pair of pants perfect for a Sunday morning.  But I guess my favorite place to use this technique is on self-lined crop tops.

Materials

  • elastic
  • quilting cotton, cotton pique, rayon, challis linen, or silk dupioni.  (You’ll need a couple of rectangles of the same size for this practice.  Roughly a square foot should be enough.)
  • thread to match your fabric
  • a loop turner or safety pins
  • pins

Shirring without elastic thread tutorial

I am using a scrap of fabric with a dark thread so you can see the stitches better.  To begin our shirring practice project, take the two pieces you will be working on right sides facing in,

Untitled design(85)
shirring with out elastic thread

sew the top at 5/8″.  Open the 2 pieces and iron the seams to one side.  Topstitch on the seam allowance. 

shirring without elstic thread

Trim the seam allowance to half.

shirring without elastic thread

Turn your work right-sides facing out and iron again.  Pin the sides so that the fabric doesn’t move and the edge becomes distorted.  Start by making a row of stitches a little wider than the elastic you are using.  I am using a 1/4″ elastic, so my rows are 3/8″ wide starting from the edge.  Sew the first row.  Since half of my foot is 1/4″ wide, I will be using my foot as a rough guide.  If you are planning to make this row larger, I suggest you use a ruler to mark the rows otherwise is very hard to eyeball it and keep the rows straight and consistent.

Untitled design(87)

Sew the entire piece, but stop when you have a bit more than 5/8″ at the bottom.  This seam allowance is indispensable to finish the hem of the garment or the waistband if you are making pants or a skirt.

Untitled design(100)

Finishing the shirring without elastic thread

Cut the elastic pieces to 1/2 to 3/4 of the length of your pattern and measurement requirements.  For example, the piece without being stretched should match your body measurements.   How many pieces of elastic will depend upon how many rows you have sewn.

Attach a safety pin at one end of the elastic.  The safety pin will help the elastic stay outside of the fabric as you draw the elastic through the rows.

Shirring without elastic thread
Untitled design(88)

Use your loop turner to pull the elastic to the other side.  If you do not have a loop turner simply attach another safety pin and thread the elastic through the rows.

Untitled design(93)

Secure the elastics that have been drawn through the rows with a safety pin or pins.

Untitled design(94)

Leave the last row empty because this is what you are going to need to integrate the shirring into and finish the garment. 

Untitled design(101)
Untitled design(102)

Sew along each edge of the piece where the pins are to permanently hold everything in place.  And there you have it.  You can use this piece as a beautiful and functional part of your new project.
In my case, I am making this crop top for a party dress.  We’ll share a tutorial for this fun project with you all shortly.  You can see some of it below.

I hope you enjoyed this alternative, and I think a better, way of shirring without using elastic thread.

I know is not the easiest, but when it is applied to the right garment, the effect is very elegant and comfortable to wear.  It will also last a long, long time.


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Culottes Tutorial For Summer Glamour

Culottes Tutorial For Summer Glamour


culottes tutorial

Culottes, one of the most trendy styles of the 50’s and 60’s, are back!  Culottes are flared pants or shorts that can often look like a skirt or a dress when you’re wearing them.  I have been trying to help you build a warm-weather wardrobe that is both easy and practical  –and that is easy to make.  Here is another free pattern to add to your collection of projects for the summer.

culottes tutorial

photo credit: Spring and Summer 1955 Lane Bryant via photopin (license)

“Culotte” is a French word that means the lower part of a garment or knee-breeches.  They have been fashionable since Henry III made them popular at court in France in the latter part of the 1500s and were worn mostly by the upper class.  Later, in the time leading up to the French revolution in the 18th century, the lower classes who wouldn’t have worn culottes became known as “sans-culottes” or literally “without short pants” — a term these partisans and revolutionaries embraced as they manned the street barricades.

There are two things I really like about this culottes tutorial and pattern –there is an option of adding front pockets to the pants without adding bulk to the tummy and you can easily transform them into long pants by adding length at the hem.

culottes tutorial

My choice of fabric is a Jacquard Knit since this pattern is for knits only.  For some ideas of the right sort of fabric to use, please check the link below.

Materials

Fabric Recommendations

Pattern sizes

These culottes are in sizes 6 to 22.  The Lower Waist measurement relative to the Hips measurement below may appear unusual to some readers, but for this design to fit right, I can assure you it is correct for the knit fabric I am using.

Finished Garment Measurements

Size Lower Waist Hips Hem Width
6 31″ 52″ 60″
8 32″ 53″ 61″
10 34″ 54″ 63″
12 35 1/2″ 55 1/2″ 64 1/2″
14 37″ 57″ 66″
16 38 1/2″ 58 1/2″ 67 1/2″
18 40″ 60″ 72″
20 42″ 62″ 74″

Pattern Pieces

  • Two backs
  • Two fronts
  • Two pockets front
  • Two pockets back
  • One waistband (not included in the pattern).  Please follow instructions on how to cut your waistband.

Features

  • These pants look like an A-line skirt or amazing super-elongating silhouette palazzo pants.
  • A flattering feature in this pattern is the pockets in the front but they are OPTIONAL.
  • Soft waistband that does not add bulk to the tummy area.
  • For the girls that do not like to wear pants in summer, this is the perfect style to feel very comfortable and still look like you are wearing a skirt.
  • 5/8″ seam allowance in all pattern pieces.

Video Tutorial

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ixdTAjl3Etg

Subscribe to the YouTube channel:

 

Pattern Layout

Culottes tutorial

Step One: Download the pattern

We’re going to continue to use the new Payhip webstore to distribute our patterns.

Our patterns are still free, but now you now have the option of making a small contribution if you like our work! We’d really appreciate it and it will help is keep going with new and fun designs like this. Even a dollar or two really goes a long way.

Thanks so much in advance for helping us out.  You can use any credit card and you don’t need a Paypal account, although you can use one if you have one.

Download the pattern HERE

If you need any help with down How to download and print PDF patterns or How to print and assemble a PDF pattern, please check out the linked tutorials.

Step Two: Cut the fabric

Use a rotary cutter or very sharp scissors and as many pins or weights as you can so your fabric does not move while cutting.  Pay special attention to the grain on the fabric indicated in your pattern.

For more guidance on Mistakes to Avoid When Cutting Fabric, please read this guide.

Step Three: Sew the pocket.

Culottes tutorial

We will start by stabilizing the seam and the opening of the pocket by adding fusible interfacing or stay tape.  This step is a must because this area will stretch and become baggy if you do not use fusible interfacing.

Culottes tutorial
Culottes tutorial

Place the front pocket piece right side down on the front side of the pants.  Prints are going to be facing each other.  Sew the front pocket side to the front pants using a 5/8″ seam.

Culottes tutorial
Culottes tutorial

Turn the pant piece print side down and pin the seam allowance to the pocket. Iron and stay stitch the seam allowance to 1/8″ from the seam. Trim the seam allowance, turn the pocket and iron.

Turn the pocket to the inside of the pants as it is going to hang and make two rows of stitches for decoration and for reinforcing the edge of the pocket.  You can use your twin needle here as well.

For guidance on How to Use a Twin Needle, please follow this guide.

Culottes tutorial

Do the same to the other pocket.

Trim the seam allowance, turn the pocket and iron.

Change your needle to a twin needle and stay stitch on the right side.  The use of a twin needle is optional.  To have the same effect without the twin needle just make 2 rows of stitches.

Culottes tutorial

Turn the front side with the pocket you have been working on print side down, place the back side of pocket on top of the front side of the pocket.  Sew around the pocket at 5/8″. 

Culottes tutorial

Zigzag the edges or use the serger.  Please note that many knits do not need the edges to be finished because they do not ravel.  If they do, serge them.

Step Four: Assemble the culottes

Culottes tutorial

Sew the two fronts together but stop two inches from the end.

Culottes tutorial

Sew the back pieces the same way, stopping 2 inches from the end.

Culottes tutorial

Sew the sides of the culottes and finish the seam either with a zigzag or a serger.

Culottes tutorial

Sew the inseam and zigzag the edges or use your serger.

Step Five: Check fitting and add the waistband

Culottes tutorial

The pants at the waist should be close to your hips but not tights,  there should be no gaps between the waistline and your hipbones.  Adjust the pants according to your body, then measure the waist and cut a band 1″ to 1 1/2″ smaller than the measurement.

Culottes tutorial
Culottes tutorial

Fold the band in half.  Sew the ends at 5/8″. 

Culottes tutorial

Fold the band lengthwise in half.

Culottes tutorial

Mark the middle top and bottom by making a small notch with your scissors.

Pin the band seam to the seam of the back of the culottes and the center mark you did before to the front seam of the pants.

Culottes tutorial

Pull the bands to distribute the stretch of the waistband evenly.

Culottes tutorial

Using a small zigzag, stitch sew the waistband to the culottes.  If you have a serger you can finish the seam with it.

Culottes tutorial

Finish the edge with your serger or using a zigzag stitch.  And there you have it.  Done.

Whether you decide to make the culottes or the palazzo pants you are sure to have an outfit for many occasions.  Team them up with a tank top or pretty blouse and you can go anywhere.

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Culottes tutorial



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