Saturday, May 19, 2012

Purple Plaid Refashion

I am inordinately proud of these shorts!

A loooong time ago, I pinned Saltwater Kids' post about turning a button-down adult shirt into kid's shorts and immediately bought a couple of button-downs from the thrift store with that project in mind. In December. Because of course I was going to make shorts in December!

I actually didn't go back and consult the original inspiration post since I remembered the general idea--beyond cheap fabric, the gist of the concept is to utilize the premade pockets you generally find on this type of shirt.  I'm so pleased with how it turned out and how many of the shirt's original details I was able to utilize!

I used Dana's Made Pants pattern in the flat front version. I also used the Melly Sews hack for adding a faux fly. I intended to use Dana's pattern for the front pockets, as I had decided the Melly Sews version resulted in too-small a pocket. I got the Made-pockets all cut out and sewn together only to realize that the front pattern I had used was one that had to be used with Melly Sews pocket. After going through various ideas to try to add back on the part of the pants that sticks out above the pocket, I finally gave up and used the Melly Sews pocket pattern. My problem was that I had already used up most of the big chunks of the shirt, except the yoke, so I had to use that for the pocket backing and then used a contrasting quilting cotton in brown for the pocket liner.  I think the bias-cut yoke fabric actually turned out pretty cute, though!

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I also used a decorative stitch on the pocket top. Not too sure I like it that much, but it's OK.

After all my pocket drama (seriously, I spent more time on those silly front pockets than pretty much the rest of it together!), I got to sew them up--my favorite part, when pants actually start resembling pants! I was SO happy with how the back pockets turned out! I got everything pretty level by pinning the pockets right on top of each other and then cutting both backs out at once. I'm sure that would be obvious to others, but I do NOT usually find the easiest way to do anything when it comes to sewing.

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Finally, I added the button, tab, and loop that were on the shirt's shoulders to the cuff of the shorts. So adorable!

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Most importantly, Will likes them!

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Screw ups in this project include:

1. "Surely it doesn't matter if I sew down the front waistband first instead of last" (I was hoping it would help me not have gathers that always seem to creep in). Yeah, there's a reason--so you can have room to work with your elastic! As a consequence of my stupidity and my impaired ability to put in the elastic, the elastic is too long and so the shorts are VERY loose. Maybe they'll fit next year too?

2. When I was clipping off a button, I must have snipped the fabric, which then got incorporated into the pants. I have no idea how to patch something like that and didn't want to Google, so I just put a patch over it from the outside (matching up a scrap of plaid from the scraps). I'm hoping that plus some Fraycheck on the inside of the pants will hold it. I don't think it's noticeable b/c of the placement and that I matched up the fabric.

I am linking up to Family Ever After. This is "my entry into Once Upon a Weekend sponsored by Appliances Online and their FridgeFreezers."


  1. Super cute - thanks for sharing!

  2. Love these shorts heaps.
    I'm your newest follower. I'd love you to follow me too, if you want :-)

  3. Oh, what a great idea! I've got a few old shirts that would be perfect--love your use of the tab at the bottom of the shorts.