Sunday, April 7, 2013

Pajama Pants

Over Christmas I made my boys (little one and big one) some pajama pants. They were simple enough so when we decided to have a Spring Party and my friend wanted to make the girls pillowcase dresses, I thought that pj pants would be great for me to make for the boys. I have several tutorials on Pinterest for ways to make pajama pants. After looking at all of them, I decided to combine a few that would be best for me. Below is my version of how to make pajama pants. I made two in about two hours after making one and experimenting which ways would work best for me. 

So our family and our friends have this thing going about which tractor is better. Green or Red. My husband worked as a diesel mechanic on the red tractors so we are all for red; however, our friends are farmers and ranchers and they say green. Ever since each of us had our first little ones we have been giving each other what we think is the better color items: tractors, clothes, little trinkets. When I saw this fabric I decided this was the perfect stuff to make these pj pants after all, they were the RIGHT color! I bought 3 yards to make sure I would have enough. 

*Please remember that I am no seamstress. I am just an amateur who likes to experiment.*

Jeans the same size as the person you are making the pants for
Fabric (at least two inches higher than the waist of the jeans and two inches longer than the     
             leg of the jeans) 
Sewing machine
Thread matching your fabric
Measuring Tool
Safety pin

Step One: When you buy the fabric it is usually folded in half. Unfold your material with the pattern facing down. Refold your material so that both edges of your fabric are next to each other and meet where the crease of the first fold was. The pattern should be showing now.

Step Two: Fold the jeans backwards so that the front zipper is facing out. Make sure the crotch is totally pulled out. Lay the jeans down with the outside of the legs right on the fold of your fabric. You can trace the pants if you want to. I just cut around the jeans. Make sure you leave about two inches all around them (top, sides, and bottom).

Step Three: Take the cutout and flip it to the other side. The fold should line up with the fold on the other side of the uncut fabric. The crotch should point toward the middle of the fabric you laid out which would be the actual edge of the fabric. Cut this as close to the already cut fabric as you can. Again, you can trace if you want.

If you look close enough you can see the cut fabric laid on top of the uncut side of fabric. 

Step Four: Unfold the fabric and lay the pieces down facing each other--pattern in, backside of fabric showing. You are going to sew from the top of the waist to the tip of the crotch on both sides. 

I got a little too close to the edge, so I sewed that part again a little farther from the edge. I usually use the foot as a guide, but I must not have been paying enough attention to this part. Oops.

Step Five: Now take both the seams you just sewed and put them together. You will start to see pants! 

Step Six: Pin the crotch together and a few more pins down both legs to secure the fabric when sewing. Sew the legs closed. Keep in mind that if the bottom of the legs do not match up, it is okay because you will be making a cuff. It is important to make sure the crotch matches up, however. To ensure this, I started sewing from the crotch down the leg. Then went back up to the crotch and sewed down the other leg. 

Step Seven: Take your pants and lay them out how you originally sewed them-so that the sewn edges are on both sides. Like in the first picture below- the seams are not facing each other. Figure out which side you want the front to be and cut a slight angle. The front of the pants should be slightly lower than the back when you lay out the pants so that both legs are seen as shown in the second picture below.

Picture on the top: seams not next to each other, start at the front (belly part) of the pants and cut a slight angle.
Picture on the bottom: unfolded, seams are on top of each other, there is a slight dip in the front of the pants (where the belly is).

Step Eight: Measure the waist on the jeans. Make your measurement an inch or two smaller than the jeans. Then, measure your elastic band and cut to match your measurement. 

Step Nine: Fold the edge of the waist over and iron. This is just to get a smooth edge at the top of the pants so the fold should not be very big.

Step Ten: Fold the waist again, this time measure a little bigger than your elastic. Mine was about 1/2 an inch bigger than the elastic. Pin the fold to make sure you keep enough space for the elastic to fit into  the waist.

Step Eleven: Sew your waist, but stop about 2-3 inches away from your beginning stitch. You need enough space to put your elastic in. 

You can see that my fingers are pointing to the places where I started and stopped sewing.

Step Twelve: Put a safety pin on the edge of your elastic and feed it through the waist you just sewed. Once the elastic is completely through the waist, sew the edges of the elastic together. I used a zigzag stitch to give it more strength. If you want a drawstring, take you drawstring and feed it through the waist the same way you did with the elastic. I didn't put a drawstring in, and simply sewed the small opening where I fed the waist closed. 

Step Thirteen: Okay, onto the legs. You are almost done! I made my legs extra long so that the kids could grow into them and they would last longer. Besides, it is always easier to make them shorter than it is to make them longer. But I did leave a lot of fabric for the cuff so that if needed or wanted, the seam could be ripped out and lengthened. Fold the cuff, iron, and sew. 

Finally! Turn your pants the right side out and admire the fact that you just created something from plan old fabric. =)

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