How to Make a Pair of Shorts

We have had ladies begging for us to make shorts for the boys.  The issue is that you don't want raw edges.  Remember, we need to assume that they will be washed in a river on a rock.

So I took Simplicity pattern S9127 and changed it to make it work.  You can use any pattern, but the nice thing about this pattern is that it contained multiple sizes.  In order to match as well as I could to the Operation Christmas Child sizes, the extra small became our small, and the small became our medium.  The medium became our large, and the large became our extra large.  To reduce the number of seams, I taped the front and back patterns together to create one piece that doesn't require a side seam.  Remember that there is a seam allowance included, so match the sides up excluding the seam allowance.  Now you have one piece that requires you to cut two.  


First you will make two pockets.  Cut four 6" squares just like you do for the girl pockets.  Place two right sides together and stitch all around the pocket leaving a small opening for turning.  Remember to leave the opening to turn the pocket either on the side or bottom.  Do the second pocket and press both pockets.   


For placement of the pocket, fold the body of the shorts in half and place a couple of pins on the center line.  Now fold the pockets in half and match the center of the pocket to the center of the shorts.  For the bottom placement, use the giant craft stick.  Using the short side of the marking for the kick pleat, place the marker line on the bottom of the shorts and pull the pocket to the top of the stick.  Some ladies feel like that makes the pocket too low and interferes with the hem.  Feel free to raise the pocket a bit higher.  Place the pins in the middle of the pockets, so you can sew all the way around the pockets without removing the pins.  Now place the other shorts piece on top of the one you just pinned.  You can feel with your fingers where the pocket is and match the second pocket to it on the second piece.  Stitch about a 1/4" seam around three sides of the pockets.  Go back and stitch a second stitch line between the quarter inch stitch line and the outer pocket.  This will sew up the opening you left for turning. 


This next step is a MUST.  You must use a serger to stitch the legs and crotch seams.  First with the fabric right sides together stitch the leg seams on both legs.  Now you will turn one leg right side out and place it inside the other leg to stitch the crotch.  Once finished, check both sides of the seam to make sure everything has been caught in the seam.


The hem is going to be done exactly like the hem is done on the girls dresses.  Using the giant craft stick draw a pencil line around the bottom of each leg.  Fold the bottom to the line and then one more time to make the hem.  Sew all the way around each leg. 


The casing for the waist will be done exactly the same way the casing for the girls dresses are done.  First stitch a 1/4" stitch around the top of the waist.  Using the craft stick make a pencil mark around the waist matching the stick to the stitch line.  Fold the top down on the pencil mark and stitch a 1/8" around to make the top of the casing.  Now fold on the stitch line to create the bottom of the casing.  Be sure to leave a small opening for inserting the elastic.  Insert the elastic and connect the two ends by stitching them together.  Now sew up the opening and attach a small ribbon with a S, M, or L on it to indicate size.