Wrap pants are a wonder during hot weather, particularly if they are made from linen. I like the traditional double tie wrap pants, but they can be a pain to re-tie every time you wee. For children, the ties are completely impractical and discretion becomes an issue on the playground when your pants open up all the way to your waistband. So, changing up the waist a little bit, and adding a few extra stitches on the side, I've made these kid (big and small) friendly pants, that have all the cooling benefits of the wrap pants, but are easier to get on and off and a whole lot more discreet.
Start with a favorite pattern for pants (or capris) that normally uses an elastic waist (or alter a pattern to do so). Trace out that pattern on a seperate piece of tissue or with wax paper, leaving some room on the sides of the pattern to make alterations.
An alternative: there are also instructions on how to make your own pattern on the original double tie wrap pants tutorial. With a bit of fandangling, you can increase the waist allowance to ensure it comes up over your hips. Then you can either do an elastic waist as suggested here orIf you use this pattern, you can make a casing to make a single tie for the front or side (like scrub pants). However, I haven't tried this yet so I can not vouch for the fit.
For the capris I've made here, I used a favorite pattern in a children's size 3T or 4T. To the entire length of the outside leg seams (both front and back) I've added 2" to make the overlapping portion of the pants. Big people: add more inches for the overlap.
You'll also want to take a moment to decide how you are going to finish the edges of the pants. Mainly the length of the pants will be affected depending on how you want to finish the hem. You may not need any alteration here if you do a regular hem on the bottom. For these pants, I've cut off the hem allowance since I decided to treat the bottoms as an extention of the sides. I find it's nice to add a bit of curve to the bottom of wrap pants since a square edge tends to curl out, but this is mostly aesthetics.
After you make your pattern alterations, cut out your pieces and sew together to the inside seams and crotch. Hem or otherwise finish the side seams and bottom.
To put in the elastic waist, I decided to sew together the overlap and treat it as a regular waistband with a casing for elastic. I've made notches on the top of the front and back leg pieces that indicate where the original seam would of been (2" from the edge).
Align these notches and pin in place, making the topmost overlapped piece the front of the leg (in otherwords, you want the front of your pants to overlap the back of your pants, unless you enjoy having your pants flap open everytime you take a step. Which you might - I make no judgement.)
Make a mark where the waistline of your pants are and stitch the two edges to each other to the waistline mark. This closes up the overlaps so you can treat the waistband casing as one piece.
Add your casing and elastic band, finishing the waist as usual.
For my daughter's pants, I wanted to close the top few inches of the flaps to avoid underwear peek a boos (reason: obvious). One way to do so is to stitch in the ditch of your topmost flap side seam. Or you could add buttons, snaps, or a pocket. But, since I am beginning to learn embroidery, I decided to do a blanket stitch all along the edges of the sides and bottom with some cotton yarn, stitching the top flap directly onto the bottom flap for the top 3":Anyway you close the top of the sides, you can see it does make a difference in action:
All that's left to do is wait for some warm weather.
Comments/questions welcome, as always :)
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