From the elasticated waistband to the wide and floaty legs, there is no denying that this garment from Amanda Walker is a joy to both stitch and wear. Combined with the right ditsy print and coloured cord, these culottes are sure to win the approval of fashion-conscious friends. What’s more this project is the perfect place to start if you would like to master our favourite feature – pockets of course!
- Fabric, 2.5m (150cm)
- Elastic, 3cm wide
- Soft cord
- Lightweight fusible interfacing
- Lightweight woven fabrics, such as viscose or rayon challis
- Back trousers: cut one pair
- Front trousers: cut one pair
- Back pocket bag: cut one pair
- Pocket bag: cut one pair
- Waistband: cut one
- 1.5cm seam allowance throughout, unless otherwise stated.
Download the pattern from sewmag.co.uk, then print and follow the cutting guide. Fuse a 3cm strip of interfacing to the wrong side along the slanted edges of both front trousers and pocket bags. Position the pocket bags along the slanted edges of the front trousers, right sides facing, pin and stitch across. Turn the pocket bags to the wrong side of the trousers, tease out the seam and press flat.
Position the back pocket bag pieces behind the pocket bags matching the curves of the pockets, making sure that the side edges are running smoothly along the side seams from below the edge of the pocket. Pin, then stitch from the top waistline around the pocket bag to the side seams and neaten the edges. Press the pockets flat and sew the layers of the pocket to the trousers at the side edges and the waistline. Make these stitching lines within the seam allowance as they are just to secure the layers together.
Match the two front trousers together around the centre front crotch and stitch together. Neaten the seam allowance. Repeat the process on the back trouser pieces through the centre back crotch edges. Lay the front trousers over the back trousers, right sides facing. Match the side seams together, pin and stitch. Neaten the seam allowance and press towards the back of the trousers. Line up the inside leg seams and sew in one continuous seam. Neaten the seam allowance together and press towards the back of the trousers.
Cut a piece of elastic that fits comfortably around the waist and add 2cm. Lap the two ends over one another and stitch in place. Fold a 90cm piece of cord in half and position it at the notch marked on the end of the waistband pattern piece and stitch the fold to this notch. Bring the two ends of the waistband together and stitch across forming a round, the cord will be sandwiched into this seam. Press the seam allowance open and the waistband in half, matching the raw edges together. Place the round of elastic up inside the folded waistband and stitch through the waistband just below the elastic. Stitch in sections and move the waistband along the elastic as it gathers.
Mark the half and quarter sections of the waistband by folding on the centre front cord seam to mark the opposite centre back position and mark the quarter points. Match the seam in the waistband to the centre front seam of the trousers and match the centre-back mark to the centre-back seam and the other two quarter marks to the side seams. This will need to be done in sections as the elastic is smaller than the waistband. Neaten all the seam allowances together, fold the waistband up and the seam allowance down into the trousers. Turn and press up 1cm at the base of each leg and another 5cm. Pin, then edgestitch the hems in place. Tie the ends of the cord in knots and the two cords in a bow.