All right, here I go... I'm a little nervous as this is my 1st sewing tutorial ever!!! Please if you feel I left something out, did too much of, would like to add something or any comment you might feel will make me improve, I would LOVE to hear them.
So are you ready to make some sweatpants out of some sleeves? I am!
STEP1: Grab an old sweater, the bigger the better! Lay it flat on your cutting table, the sleeves especially.
STEP2: Grab a pair of pants that fit your kid nicely, they should be in a similar fabric or at least same type of stretch. Place your kids pants on top of your sleeve to determine the lenght you will need or if your sleeve is long enough!
As you can see from the picture above, I left some extra sleeve fabric since I wanted my daughter to wear them with the cuff folded over at first, so she could eventually grow into them.
STEP3: Notch your sleeve fabric 1cm higher than the sewing seam between the pant leg and the waistband of your kids pants.
and cut straight until you hit your underarm curve and just cut the rest of the sleeve off.
STEP4: Do the same on the opposite sleeve. For better results, just lay your first sleeve on top of the second as a guide.
Now you have 2 cut off sleeves!
STEP5: We need to create the curve for the front and back crotch.
Take your good fitting kids pants, turn them inside out and put one leg inside the other. Now you should have what looks like half a pair of pants!
Lay your kids pants on top of one of your sleeves. My sleeve was skinnier than my kids pants, so I aligned the edge of the sides together, making sure the size was right around the hip and bum area.
If your sleeve is very wide you might want to cut it and follow your kids good fitting pants. My kids pants were flare and I was happy with the width of my original sleeve.
Now you are ready to cut both front and back. I cut both together, that's how my kids pants were designed, that's how most jogging pants are designed.
As you can see from my photo above, my sleeve is not wide enough to cut the entire length of my front and back crotch. No worries, this will be taken care off later.
***If your sleeve is wide enough, you can keep cutting. You will find that the back is longer, usually by 1 or 1.5 cm than the front.
STEP6: I made sure my waist band line was straight from when I first cut it in step4.
STEP7: I need to determine where the front of waistband will be. For this I folded in the back part of my kids pants, to see better and then I notched the TOP layer of my sleeve at 1cm above where the seem of my kids pants and the waistband meet.
Usually this is about 1.5 to 2 cm below the center back wasitline.
Remove your kids pants and cut in a slight curve up until you reach the side of the pants, as pictured.
Your waistband curve should look something like this.
Now do the same on the opposite sleeve.
STEP8: Now we will add the fabric we were missing from our front and back crotch from step5. Find some extra fabric. I used the extra fabric I had cut off in step5 ( photo above), you will need 2 pieces. the size all depends on how much smaller your sleeve is compared to your kids pants. Mine has a seam going through it, if you can, try to avoid it! It will be more comfortable and less bulky.
STEP9: Lay your sleeve on top of your kids pants.
For the front, put your extra piece of fabric on top. I aligned the seam of that small piece of fabric with my kids pants, so it would be centered. Then you can cut the excess off, but don't forget to add your seam allowance of 1 cm.
The back end piece should be 1cm to 1.5 cm wider than the front.
Repeat for the other leg.
STEP10: Measure the length of your small piece of fabric you just cut in step9 and remove 1cm. Next, cut the seam or unstitch ( if you have the patience) by the length you just determined.
*** I recommend sewing and securing the seam where you just finished cutting.
STEP11: Choose your fabric for your waistband. I used the waistband of my sweatshirt, however you can use another sweatshirt, some ribbing or some t-shirt material as well.
Now grab one of your legs and measure the length of the waistline, double that number. If you are doing a waistband with only 1 seam, subtract 2cm. If your waistband will have 2 seams in it, then only subtract 1cm. I had enough fabric to make my waistband with only 1 center back seam. I also made the waistband 8cm high including the seam allowance of 1cm.
STEP12: Sew your triangular piece of fabric to the front and back of your inside seam for both legs at 1cm from the edge.
*** You can overlock or zig-zig stitch the edge if you'd like, specially if you are doing this with a knitted sweater. However, It is not necessary if you are using fleece, terry or even a t-shirt/ jersey weave, don't worry it will not fray.
STEP13: Sew the front and back crotch together at 1cm from the edge.
** overlock if you like.
STEP14: Sew your waistband seam and leave a 1.5cm opening to pass through your elastic.
STEP15: Turn your pants inside out. Fold your waistband in 2 and align both center back seams. Make sure the opening for your elastic is facing you ( that way it will end up on the inside of the pants).
I like to determine my center front and sides of my pants and waistband, then pin the two together for easier sewing.
Sew all around at 1cm from the edge.
** Overlock if you like.
STEP16: Measure your child's waist to determine the length of your elastic. I like to make my elastic 2cm shorter. Cut your elastic and pass it through your little opening with a safety pin.
Make sure your elastic hasn't twisted and turned before you sew it!
STEP17: Sew your elastic by overlapping one end onto the other by about 2cm and sewing in the middle, preferably with a zigzag stitch.
You can always close shut the opening by hand, I usually leave it open in case I want to make the elastic bigger in the near future.
There you got it!!!
Feel free to email me if you have any questions, I will be delighted to help you out.
I did not sew the pocket, but I think I might come up with a tutorial soon...