My 'sew stopper' used to be pants or leggings. I never used to get the crotch/seat part quite right. Until recently that is. All I had to do was take apart 3 different size of leggings, 1 of each of my daughters and one of my own. (And stitched them right back up, of course). So once you figure it out, what else can you do but over do it, right?

So here are the 2 methods I arrived at after my dissection...

1. The simple way...if you already have leggings that we can use as a template...

Fold the leggings neatly over a piece of paper that you are going to make your template out of.  Leave 3/4 inch on the top and bottom for the band and hem respectively. Trace the outline of the pants about 1/2 inch more than the pants. There...you have your template.

Now fold the fabric by half and place the flat side of the template against the folded side. This fit works best with knit fabric that has stretch to it. If you are using cotton or other  non-stretchy material fold along the bias grain, that is, diagonally. This will add some stretch to the fabric.

Once you cut according to your template, times twice, you should end up with 2 pieces like this...

 Now keep the right sides facing each other and stitch together the top part. If your machine can be fitted with a twin needle, that works best for knits. Some machines do come with a straight stitch for knits. If you don't have either of these options use a tight and small zig-zag stitch.

After finishing the top half of the pants, sew up the bottom hem line.

Now fold the whole thing, with the top stitch in the middle and sew up the legs. Make sure you back-stitch or reinforce the ends.

Finally, sew in an elastic band according to waist size.

 2. The Math way...(if you are starting from the scratch and do not have existing leggings of the desired size)

Measurements needed:

  • Hip
  • Waist to Ankle
  • Waist to Knee
  • Ankle circumference
  • Knee circumference
Click on the image below to enlarge it. (I have left a little too much room for the band in this picture. Ideally leave about 1 inch for band and then mark the waist point)

Mark the following points:
The Crotch point is at Hip/3 + 3/4 inch from waist
Point X is at Hip/3 + 1/2 inch from Crotch point
Point O is at Hip/12  + 1/4 inch from X

The rest is pretty self explanatory from the picture. It does sound complicated, but once you have all the measurements dotted out on paper, it is quite simple...

Whichever method you use, you end up with a nice pair of leggings.

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