We are planning our winter vacation wardrobe early this year in the hope it means we can get away somewhere very warm and sunny! If you are looking for a pair of versatile and comfortable shorts to lounge around on that sunny beach amongst exotic lands, this could be just what you need. Our pleated shorts are made from super soft pure linen and feature loads of pockets (two deep side pockets and two patch pockets at the back), elasticated back, relaxed fit and some crisp pleating at the front.
Follow this easy tutorial and make your very own pair of comfy, stylish and perfect-for-every-occasion shorts!
For US size 6 pictured in this tutorial: 1.5 yards of IL019 ASPHALT FS Signature Finish Medium Weight Linen. For larger sizes, please refer to the yardage table in the PDF pattern.
Matching sewing thread, lightweight fusible interfacing, 0.5 yard of 1”-wide elastic
Scissors, pins, ruler, chalk, fabric marker, measuring tape, safety pin, sewing machine
You can access the multi-sized printable PDF pattern by following this link HERE. All seam allowances are included. The model is wearing size US size 6.
Note: Prewash your fabric and tumble dry it until it is still slightly moist, dry at room temperature. Iron the fabric so it is easier to work with.
1. Let’s start with the back patch pockets. Follow the instructions (The First Method) of this detailed tutorial and topstitch your pockets to the two back pieces of your shorts.
2. Now take your front pocket pieces, fold them in half right sides together and stitch along the bottom edge at a 3/8” (1 cm) seam allowance. Make sure they are mirror images to each other.
3. Trim the seam allowance down to ¼” and turn the fabric right side out. Press and stitch again 3/8” from the bottom edge.
4. Pin the diagonal edge of the pockets (wrong side) to the diagonal edge of the front pieces (right side) and stitch at a 3/8” seam allowance. Remember to backstitch.
5. Trim the seam, turn right side out and press flat. Topstitch 3/8” (1 cm) from the folded edge.
6. Pin the side seams of the pocket to the side seams of your front pieces and baste in place (¼” from the raw edge).
7. Refer to the notches and create two knife pleats on each short front (do not pleat the pocket fabric). Start from the notch closest to center front and fold the fabric towards the side seam. We have a great tutorial about knife pleats to help you with your pleating.
8. Baste your pleats in place catching the two pocket edges.
9. Pin each short front to the corresponding short back at the side seams right sides together catching the pocket edges.
10. Stitch at a 3/8” (1 cm) seam allowance and finish the seam together with a serger or a zigzag stitch to prevent the fabric from fraying in the future. Press the seam allowances towards the back of your short.
11. Pin each short front to the corresponding short back at the inseam right sides together. Stitch, finish and press just like you did in step #10.
12. Turn the right leg right side out and slip it into the left leg. Pin the crotch seams together matching the side seams and inseams.
13. Sew along the crotch seam at a 3/8” (1 cm) seam allowance. Serge or zigzag the raw edges together and press the seam flat. Here’s what your shorts look like from the right side at this point:
14. Finish the bottom hem with a rolled hem: fold your fabric twice to the wrong side (first 3/8” then another 1”), press, pin and edgestitch.
Now that your legs are assembled, you need to assemble the waistband that has a flat front and an elasticated back.
15. First, apply fusible interfacing to the wrong side of the outer front waistband. To avoid bulky seams you can trim off the seam allowances of the interfacing.
16. Pin the short edges of the front/back waistband right sides together and stitch at a 3/8” (1 cm) seam allowance to create a tube. Press the seams open.
17. Fold your waistband in half lengthwise and wrong sides together and press. Then press the entire raw edge of the inner (non interfaced) waistband 3/8” to the wrong side.
18. Pin the raw edge of the outer waistband to the shorts right sides together and stitch at a 3/8” (1 cm) seam allowance. Note how the front waistband extends past the side seams. This is intentional since we want to avoid elastic gathering at the side seams. So center your front section as best as you can to make it look symmetrical.
19. Press the seam allowance and the waistband up then pin the inner waistband edge to the wrong side of your shorts covering the stitchline.
20. Cut your elastic to the desired length (place it against your back waist and see what size is most comfortable for you) and add a couple of inches. Attach a safety pin to one end, unpin one of the side seams of your shorts and place the end of the elastic that doesn’t have a safety pin a little past the side seam and secure it in place by topstitching in the ditch of the side seam.
21. Working from the right side of your shorts, stitch in the ditch of your waistband catching the inner waistband edge and leaving a small opening at the other side seam to pull the elastic out. Remember to backstitch at both ends.
22. Pull your elastic through the opening, cut the tail and secure the end by stitching in the ditch of the side seam (just like you did in step #20).
23. Close the opening and you are all done!
Pull on a pair of these and you’ll be amazed that you can look so good and while feeling so free and comfortable!
We love seeing what you make! Don’t forget to share your pictures and tag your creations with #FabricsStoreJulesPattern hashtag.