Harem shorts tutorial and free pattern – size 4-6y

It’s been two years since I started working on this harem pants/shorts pattern. I started with babies pants and then updated it to bigger sizes, as my boy is a big fan of this comfy wear. I am now working on making it available for PDF download on my online shop. But until it is ready I am offering a free version of the harem shorts on size 4-6 years.

This model is a very easy fitting, as the comfy & loose style will cope with the growing. But what I like about this pattern is that though being harem, they are not too much large, so they look good on my boy, who is more to the skinny side.

Hope you enjoy it!

MATERIALS
Main Fabric: You can use some college/sweat jersey knit. A sturdier fabric will give it a better shape. But I have also used some lightweight jersey with good results. For the shorts in the pictures above I used one of my favorite fabrics of all, the denim look jersey (sweatshirting) from nosh. They have a beautiful collection of organic knits.

Pocket Fabric: You will need two layers of single jersey – one front and one lining. You can use the same fabric for both or choose some different colors match. (Tip: you can also use lightweight weaved fabric for the lining – this gives the pocket a more sturdy look and makes it easier to sew)

Elastic – 1,8 to 2cm (3/4″) wide. I’m using 55cm (21,5″) of elastic (includes allowance for overlap). But you can measure the waist and cut to that size.

TOOLS & SUPPLIES
– Washable fabric marker or chalk;
– Scissors or rotary cutter and mat;
– Measuring tape;
– Hand sewing needle;
– 2 safety pins;
– Sewing machine;
– Serger (optional);
– Stretch (ball-point) needle;
– Double needle, ball-point (optional);
– Pins;
– Regular thread (polyester is recommended for knits).

THE STITCH
Sewing knit fabrics is easier with a serger or an overlock foot. But you can use a regular sewing machine as well. In this case, always use a stretch stitch, such as a zigzag stitch or triple stitch (some sewing machine have this option).

TUTORIAL
First download and print the pattern from this link (please follow printing tips). Assemble it as shown, then cut the pattern.

1 . Trace and cut
Use the pattern to trace and cut your fabrics. Seam allowances are already included in the pattern, and they are 1 cm (3/8″) unless otherwise stated. Cut one back and one front panel in the fold of fabric (for front panel cut the top on the dash line). Copy pocket  marks to the front fabric.

For pocket, seam allowances are 0,5 cm (1/4″). Cut two layers of fabric.

2 . Assemble the pocket
Place pocket fabrics with Right Sides facing and sew as shown, leaving a gap for turning right side out. Place it on the front panel, stitching the top and the bottom of the pocket with an edgestitch (a seam that is stitched very close to the edge, usually less than 3mm – 1/8″).

In the image below you can see the seam in detail. I begin and finish with a very narrow zigzag stitches to reinforce, and I like to start at the sides and the follow to the top/bottom of the pocket. I use a triple stitch in this case, because it is stretchy, but you can use a small zigzag stitch. Regular stitch can also work here, but is more likely to break if your kid likes to use the pocket a lot (as my little guy does).

3 . Assemble the shorts
Place back and front panel with Right Sides facing and sew the sides and the crotch using a serger or a small zigzag stitch. I set my machine lenght and widht to 3.0mm or less.

4 . Make the waistband
There are many ways to add elastic to a waistband. In this case I’m showing how to make a casing and inserting the elastic into it.
Make a 0,5cm (1/4”) fold towards the Wrong Side of the fabric. Fold another 2,5cm (1”) and press. Hold with pins and sew with a zigzag or triple stitch. Leave about 5cm (2″) gap to insert the elastic.
 Insert the elastic through the casing using the safety pins. Overlap the elastic edges about 1cm (3/8″) and sew it together with a zigzag stitch. Close the gap. ( Tip: don’t close it before you try it on your kid, so you can adjust the elastic to the desired fit).

5 . Finish the legs bottom.

You can simply let it roll up, as jersey won’t fray. This is my favorite look. I make two 0,5cm (1/4″) folds and sew it down with a few zigzag stitches at both side seams. I like to use some contrast color.


Another way to finish is to make a hem with a double needle. Fold 1cm (3/8″) to the wrong side and stitch with a double needle (ball point or stretch).

That’s it. I’d love to see your creations if you adventure.
Meanwhile, I leave you with the beautiful and quite talented photographs of Bailey & Oscar, who have modeled our shorts. You can follow their Instagram account for some truly inspiring kidswear and family life.

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