Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Alternative Waistband Construction

Most Apple Dumpling Gear patterns require a knit with lycra for the waistband. This ensures there is enough return stretch to hold up the pants. I wanted to post some instructions on what to do if your waistband material doesn't have any lycra in it (for example with 100% wool interlock). All you need to do is add some braided elastic in the waistband and prest-o-change-o...the pants stay up!
Here is how to do it:

1) Before cutting your waistband piece decide how big you want it. The pattern piece that the ADG pattern comes with is designed for a knit with a lot of stretch, if your knit has a ton of stretch (for example if it is a rib knit or even an interlock) you can probably leave the pattern piece the same size. If you are working with a less stretchy knit, such as a sweatshirt fleece, you might need to make the waistband piece longer so it can stretch over the diaper bum. For example, I made this pair of pants out of sweatshirt fleece and I used the size large waistband instead of the medium.

Note: If the fabric you are using for the legs also has very little stretch, you may consider sizing up to allow for greater ease of movement an easier time taking the longies on and off. For example: I used a size large for the width but the size medium for the rise and inseam - more on how to do this in a late blog post.

2) Choose a piece of braided elastic to go inside the waistband. The waist band has a finished height of 2" (after it is folded and sewn) so I used an elastic with a width of 1 3/4". This fits nicely inside the casing. You could use a smaller width but it might shift a bit. You definitely want to choose and non-roll elastic or the elastic will get all scrunched up after a while.

3) Choose the the length of elastic based on your child's waist. Shiloh has a waist that is 20" around so I cut my elastic to 18 1/2". This is tight enough to keep the pants on but large enough for some growing room.

4) Butt the ends of the elastic together and sew a wide zig zag up and down the raw edges thereby attaching the ends and making a loop.

5) Place your waistband right sides together and sew the short edge with a stretch stitch as directed in the pattern.

6) Fold the waistband in half lengthwise and place the elastic inside the "casing" this creates. Pin the raw edges together.

7) Zig zag all the way around the raw edges to baste them together.

8) Sew your waistband into your pants as directed in the instructions.

9) Enjoy your new pants!! Admire how they stay up:)

Kids love to store treasures! Free Pocket Pattern

I wanted to be able to share my super cute pocket pattern with everyone. This pattern can be downloaded and printed right at home for free! Sizing for newborn, small, medium, medium/long, and large. Use this pocket pattern with any Apple Dumpling Gear Longies and Shorties style patterns: the Original Longies and Shorties pattern, the Peach Tree pattern, the Playground longies pattern and the Blossom longies pattern.

Download here.


1) Download and print your pattern. Make sure to turn off the scaling on your printer before printing. Double check that the 1" square is in fact 1". Make sure to print in portrait.

2) Cut out the desired size for your pocket.

3) Fold your fabric right sides together and lay your pattern piece onto the fabric. Trace around the pattern piece with a washable marker. Transfer the fold lines for the pocket facing onto the fabric.

4) Lay your pocket pieces wrong side up on the table as seen the following picture. Fold along the fold lines to hem the pocket. Pin and sew close the the raw edge. Use a stretch stitch such as a double needle, zig zag or three step zig zag so that the stitching doesn't pop when your little one puts their hands into the pockets and stretches the fabric.

5) Lay out your pants on the table, right side up with the crotches facing each other. Place your pocket pieces onto the pants as directed on the pattern.

6) Pin the curved edge of the pocket to the pants. Stitch with a straight stitch, 1/8" from the edge of the pocket, thereby attaching the pocket to the pants.

Note: You may choose to baste the top and side of the pocket to the pants before sewing the pants together.

7) Sew the pants together following the instructions supplied in the purchased pattern.

8) Enjoy your adorably cute treasure pants!