Saving a gradeschool boy's pants-- tutorial

>> Thursday, October 22, 2009





My 7-1/2 year old ("the Eldest") has ripped the knees out of 6 pair of pants in the last 2 months. I JUST bought him these pants at the beginning of the school year. In addition, the pants I bought (2 months ago) are starting to look like capris!



So what's a mother to do? I am too cheap (frugal) to buy him new pants. So I improvised ....and I think it turned out quite well!

The damaged goods:




Using the grid mat as a guide, cut the pants leg above the torn-out knee. Then cut the undamaged leg in the same place (hence the need for the grid).




Next, cut the rip from the bottom part of the leg. Then cut the other detached leg  so that it measured the same length.

Measure the boy from waist to below his ankle (or where ever  you wanted the pants to stop over his shoe). Measure down the side seam of the "shorts" part of the pants, noting the measurement. Then measure what is left of the detached leg after removing the space that had been damaged, also noting that measurement. Add the two measurements together and then subtract the sum from the desired finish length (the boy's waist to ankle measurement). The number you get is the length of the fabric you needed to insert.



I chose a similarly colored fabric, but it was thicker than the original pants and was a bit stretchy. I placed the piece I removed from the pants on top of my fabric (double thickness ) as a guide for the width needed. I cut out a square lightly wider than needed. You may have better way to do this, but this worked for me.

See my expensive fabric marker?



Lay out the pants with the fabric square between the "shorts" part and the detached legs. Then mark a line down the sides of the fabric square indicating where the new side seams would be. The taper in the pant legs makes this a bit tricky. I eye balled it and it worked fine.

Sew along marked lines. Remember that the lines indicate sewing lines, not seam allowance. I used my serger. If you don't have a serger, I would suggest zig-zagging the edges, as the more reinforcement you give the pants, the more likely they are to survive the war the little boy will put them through.




Pin the insert-fabric to the bottom leg portion.  Serge or sew.




The next step is the dreaded part. The ironing. But according to my mother-in-law, whose sewing projects turn out looking store bought, the difference between a good finished project and a not-so-good looking one is.... the IRONING.
 
So DON'T SKIP THIS STEP!



Be sure to iron inside (the seams down) and outside.



Pin the legs to the 'shorts' with right sides together.



Serge or sew.


IRON again


 Try it on the boy and admire your work.

The inserts are not really crooked... I just couldn't get the little munchkin to stand up straight!

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