Back to School ~ Kindergartner Pants
Tawny Bee from Tawny Bee and The L-T Experience created this Kindergartner Pants tutorial for our Back to School series. You can size the pants up or down using a pair of pants that fits your child as a guide. We also have a great post about Modifying Pants Patterns for Babies and Kids you can reference to get a perfect fit.
Oh my goodness! My little boy is going to start Kindergarten this year! Ack. I’m so not ready for this. He’s growing up way too fast. Not only is he expanding his mind, he’s also expanding upwards. How do these kids grow so fast when all they seem to eat is macaroni and cheese and hot dogs?
I’ve come up with a Back to School pants design to help curb the cost of buying clothes to keep up with these growing boys and girls. The Kindergarten Pants are Size 5 and have a cuff that can be folded down as your child inches toward the sky. Awesome. Wanna make some with me?
- 1 yard/metre quilter’s weight cotton or heavier
- 0.4 yard/metre cotton for pockets and cuffs
- Coordinating thread
- 1 inch width elastic (enough to go around your little one’s waist comfortably)
- Kindergartner Pants Pattern
- Machine sewing
- Some fussiness over pockets and cuffs
Time Needed: It takes about an hour or two from start to finish depending on individual sewing skills
* Note: all seams are at ½ inch unless stated otherwise.
Step One: Assemble the Pattern
Download and print the Kindergartner Pants Pattern. It will be six pages. Cut out and assemble the pattern making sure to match the letters on the main pants piece. Tape or glue together.
Step Two: Cut Out your Fabric
Cut two of the main pants pattern piece. Flip the piece over and cut two more pieces. You don’t really have to “flip” the piece around if you’re making this version of the pants. Just make sure you cut 2 pieces each way. This works if you have your fabric folded over and are cutting two pieces at a time. I flip it because sometimes I use this pattern for making pajama pants, in which case I cut on the fold, omit the pockets and put ribbing along the foldline instead of a cuff.
Cut two back pockets out of coordinating fabric (or main fabric if you prefer).
Cut two flat front pockets our of coordinating fabric and two out of the same (or scrap) for lining, making four pieces total.
Cut four cuffs out of coordinating fabric (or main fabric again if you prefer).
Step Three: Sew On the Back Pockets
On back pocket piece, fold the top under ¼ inch. Press. Then fold toward the right side along the foldline. Stitch along both sides at ¼ inch.
Turn right side out and topstitch close to edge of facing.
Press raw edges under and pin pocket in place on a main pants piece. You can use the pattern as a guideline, or eyeball it to where you’d like the pockets to sit. Sew in place close to sides and bottom edge.
Optional: Stitch the pocket on again ¼ of an inch away from original stitching so that it matches the stitching on the flat front pockets.
Repeat Step Three for the second pocket. Make sure you sew the pockets on two opposite pants pieces or else your pants won’t go together correctly. I’ve made this mistake. Yikes! It’s one of the downsides to one piece pants patterns.
Step Four: Sew on Flat Front Pockets
Take one piece cut from your flat front pocket fabric and one piece cut from your lining. Place them right sides together. Pin and stitch along the long curved side, the top and the small curved side. Leave the short, straight side open. Clip corners and curves. Turn right side out and press.
Topstitch along short curve close to the edge. Topstitch again ¼ inch away from original stitching. Pin pocket on front pants piece according to pattern markings. Stitch along long curve and top close to the edge. Stitch again ¼ inch away from original stitching.
Baste raw edges together. Make sure to leave the short curve open of course! Repeat Step Four for the second pocket.
Step Five: Assemble the Pants
With right sides together, pin a back piece to a front piece at long side seams. Stitch both sides. Be sure not to stitch above the crotch on the inner leg seam. Repeat for the other leg.
Turn one leg right side out and place inside of the other leg so that right sides are together. Pin matching crotch seam lines. Stitch crotch seam. Stitch again because little ones really put pressure on this seam.
Step Six: Assemble Casing
Turn pants inside out. Press top edge down ¼ inch and then again at 1 ¼ inch (or along foldline marking on the pattern). Pin and sew around the casing, making sure to leave a couple of inches open for elastic insertion. Measure the recipient of these pants around the waist for an accurate elastic measurement. My boy is a skinny mini so his elastic was 20.5 inches.
Insert elastic through the opening. Secure in place with some stitching. Stitch the opening closed. I like to secure the elastic even further by “stitching in the ditch” along the side seams. It holds the elastic in place and prevents it from rolling due to high activity from kids.
Step Seven: Assemble the Cuffs
The cuffs are a little bit counter-intuitive (at least to me!) but stay with me. I assure you they will come together in the end. Pin two cuff pieces right sides together. Sew along both short sides forming a tube. Fold one edge of the cuff under ¼ inch and press. Fold the bottom edge of the pant leg under ¼ as well and press. Pin cuff wrong sides together around the bottom edge of the pants matching the edges that you just pressed down. Topstitch close to the bottom. Fold top edge of cuff under ¼ inch and press. Pin around the pants leg. Carefully stitch close to the top edge. This can be done, but you’ve got to be patient and continually make sure not to catch the other side of the pant leg while sewing.
You may be wondering why on earth you have a cuff sewn to the wrong side of the pants? Behold! Turn your pants right side out and flip the cuff to the right side as well. Press and then anchor the cuff in place with a few hand stitches along the seams. Like magic, when your kindergartner grows (and he/she will!) all you have have to do is cut those hand stitches and flip the cuff to the inside. Voila! You’ve got another three inches of growth out of these pants!
You’re finished! Can I get a high five?
Sew a few more Kindergartner Pants. You’ll need ‘em!
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