Saturday, May 30, 2009

Pirate Pants Tutorial (a.k.a. bandana Pants)

Here is a quick and dirty tutorial for making summer pants for your kids. Once you have be basic concept you can make these for just about anyone and just about any size. I will give some info on that at the end of the Tute.

My kids love these pants and wear them all summer. I have found that they fit about a large 3T to about a size 10 or so. My 11 (almost 12) year old can still wear hers but she is super skinny.


2 large bandanas (smaller ones would make pants for a toddler)


1. Place two bandanas right sides together.

Pirate Pants Tutorial 001

2. Fold them in half and just out a J shaped piece from one outside corner. The J size I use for most children is about 3" by 9". I came up with that number by measuring their crotch from the top of their bum to their belly button and then dividing that number in half and added a couple of inches. I placed the measuring tape on the fabric in a J shape and evened it up and decided that was my J shape. (sorry not very scientific but it works for me).

Pirate Pants Tutorial 003

I had a little pirate waiting for the pants. Tutorials take oh so long when you are 6 and are waiting for some hot new pants to run around in.

3. Take each leg piece now and fold it in half with right sides together and sew up the inside seams. Since the bandanas are already hemmed you just need to make sure you keep that edge even.

Pirate Pants Tutorial 006

4. Turn one leg right side out and slip it "inside" the other leg. Stitch the crotch seam.

Pirate Pants Tutorial 008Pirate Pants Tutorial 010Pirate Pants Tutorial 013

5. Turn down the waist about 1 1/2" and press. Sew a casing 1" from the outside edge. Leave an opening to run the elastic in. Sew another casing 1/2" from top edge leaving a hole for the elastic in the same place as the first. Run two pieces of elastic through and secure them and finish off the seam. (measure around the waist and cut the elastic to fit. You can "test the elastic first around them and see how snug you want it.)

Pirate Pants Tutorial 015Pirate Pants Tutorial 018Pirate Pants Tutorial 019

You are done!!! One Happy Pirate. These shorts will fit from mid calf to the knee depending on how tall your child is. They are long pants for my 3 year old and shorts for my 11 year old.

Pirate Pants Tutorial 020
You can also make these pants with just fabric if you don't have bandannas. Two fat quarters make pants for a little kid. You can also make these for larger people by using yardage. You want to measure around the widest part and divide that by 2 and add four or five inches. That is how wide each piece of fabric needs to be to go around the waist, hips and legs of a larger person.
Play with the measurements and see what you come up with. You will need to finish the top edge of the pants with a zig-zag or serger and will have to help the pants.

Have fun and please post your pictures in the " Sewing with Mama Byrd Tutorials" flickr group.


Drea said...

awesome! I've been wanting to make some shorts for myself from some scrap fabric. :) Thanks for sharing!

Eclectic Pink Rose said...

I love the tutorial, thank you and it sounds extremely easy, maybe I can do this, and now the bandanna selection at the craft store is amazing!!! Thank you!!
♥ Teresa

Anonymous said...

A wonderful tutorial! Thank you so much. I think this will be one of the girls' sewing projects this summer. ~Kelly

unDeniably Domestic

Anonymous said...

Brilliant AND adorable - a winning combination!

BabyDoll822611 said...

Thanks for the FAB tutorial! I just made a pair for my little pirate!

I think they came out great!!! (just gotta fix the inside out hem on his right leg. -_-

Sharlyn said...

Great tute, thanks!

CreatedByTrish said...

Thank you :-)

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