Friday, April 19, 2013

DIY toddler Fisherman's Pants

  If you’ve never worn Thai fisherman’s pants before, you are in for a treat.  I was first introduced to them while attending university and fell in love.  Thai fisherman’s pants are comfy enough to lounge around in with the freedom of movement usually reserved for gi pants (karate pants), and funky enough that you look like you made an effort.  

  So when I realized that Evening was going to need some more summer pants, I wanted her to have a pair of my favourite comfy pants too.   I busted out the measuring tape and started figuring it out.  This pattern is for toddlers, but don’t worry, you can find an adult pattern here.  

  This pattern and these pants are forgiving, but I don’t recommend you make these pants out of a knit fabric.  I’m actually using some upcycled linen from an old couch cover!  An old sheet would be perfect for this project too.

   This pattern should fit most kids from 1-2.5 years old (gasp!  they'll fit for more than a month!) as the hips don’t widen too much in those years.  I’ll tell you where to adjust the pants for your child’s inseam length, but the pants look nice cropped as well so use your own judgement! 

  To start, gather up some paper, a ruler, and a pencil to draw up the pattern pieces.  This pattern has three pieces altogether. 

  The first piece is for the top panel, a rectangle that is 54 cm by 24 cm.  Click here for a handy conversion from centimeters to inchesYou will use this top panel pattern to cut 2 pieces of your fabric.  

  The second piece is the pant legs, which look something like a fat capital T.  Measure and mark 54 cm across the top of your T.  On both sides, mark out 12 cm straight down, and then another 23.5 cm (this measurement is the inseam plus 2.5 cm seam allowance – sub here to fit your child).  Returning to where you marked 12 cm, cut out a curved 5 cm by 23.5 cm (or inseam) rectangle from either side so that your T looks like this:  

(you can click on this photo to enlarge it)

  I find it best to draw one curve and cut it out then fold the paper over and trace the first one.  A good match means the pant pieces will fit together well.

  Cut two of these from your fabric.  

  Our third piece is the tie, simply a long strip 2 cm by 90 cm long.  You’ll need to cut 1 from your fabric.  

  If you want to add a graphic to your pant leg as I did, now is the time to do it.   

  I used a silhouette of children playing dress up that I found on the Graphics Fairy’s blog.  You can find it here.

adorable silhouette I added to Evening's pants

   There are a lot of different methods to apply graphics to fabric, but we’re pretty low tech around here.  I printed off the picture and taped it to our window.  Then I taped the pant leg over it and traced the image onto the fabric using a frixion pen.  Next I coloured it in using a non-toxic, black “Stained” fabric marker. 

super-technical way of adding graphic (patent pending)

 While that is setting, take your two top panels and placing right sides together (if applicable) and stitch along both shorter edges so that you make a tube.  Hem one long edge of the tube.  Turn right side out and set aside.  

  Take up the two leg pieces and place right sides together.  Stitch along the 12 cm seam on each side and open so that these seams fall in the middle.   Beginning at the bottom of one pant leg, stitch up and around the curve of the crotch, and down the other leg.  Turn right side out.  

  Place the pants inside the tube made by the top panel, lining up the tops of both pieces.  Making sure that both are turned right side out, stitch around the tops.  

  Almost there!

  Now stitch around your tie piece, leaving one end open.  Using a chopstick/pencil/what-have-you turn the piece right side out.  Iron flat and stitch open end closed.  

  Pull the top panel of the pants up and stitch the middle of the tie onto the rear of the pants, about 8 cm above the back seam.  

  For potty training purposes, you might want to add a few snaps or a button to the tie so your little one doesn’t have too much trouble.  

  And you’re done!

  But wait!  How do you wear these huge pantaloons??

  It’s a bit different from our regular pants – first put your tot into the pants, pulling that top panel up and tying the tie (or snapping or buttoning) around the waist.  Then allow the top part to tumble over the tie – there you are, ready for some fishing!

pull panel up and fasten tie around belly

  I hope you like these pants as much as we do!  Evening really appreciates the new freedom she has for climbing…

  If you have any questions or if any parts need clarification, leave me a message so I can help.   And of course, we’d love to see some photos if you try this out! 

Linking up at A Humble Creation, Eco-Kids Tuesday, Sew Darn Crafty, Brag Monday at the Graphics Fairy, We Made That, Pattern Party and the Creative HomeAcre.  

If this tutorial helped you create something or inspired you, please take a moment to click on this box! 

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  1. These are really cute. And you are resourceful. Thanks for sharing on the HomeAcre Hop. Come back and see us this week:

  2. How adorable! I think your model really makes it!

  3. Great idea! Very cute :) Thanks for sharing this on The Creative HomeAcre Hop!
    Hope to see you again today. :)

  4. Nice pants! Thanks for the tutorial and thanks for sharing it with us at Eco-Kids Tuesday! Please join us again today!

    BTW-I LOVE your little one's name!

    1. I'm glad you like them! Thanks for name-love, we love it too!

  5. thats so cute!!!!!!
    your baby is so beutifull!!

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