October 7, 2011

Maternity Fashions: Refashioning Pants for baby Belly - Partial Panel Pants

Yesterday, I showed you my "full panel pants" but they weren't my favorite. They didn't work for me the same reason that store-bought varieties didn't work (and why REGULAR jeans don't like to work either!) So I tried again... with a partial panel.

These pants were actually a little TOO SMALL for me (now they're REALLY too small, but that's because of my butt... not my belly!)  They had never quite fit right, so I had no problem hacking into them and trying again!

As with the full panel pants, you'll want to start by cutting out the portion that your belly will now occupy. There's no need for the zipper, so cut it right out of there! (Some of you may even find something good to do with those zippers... and if you do... let me know! I have a few pairs of zippers just stashed in my craft room at this point)

As for how we're going to hold them up...
First we need to make our panel for the belly cut-out. With the hole cut out, and the pants lieing flat, take a piece of knit fabric (stretching side-to-side) and fold it in half, so that it completely covers the hole, the folded edge lines up with the edge of the pants, and the raw edges are about 1/2"-1" below the bottom of the hole (for a seam allowance). If you line it up INSIDE the pants, you'll be able to draw a chalk line along where the hole is, and then cut out the "semi-circle" 1/2-1" bigger (for seam allowances). That's your panel... put it to the side.
Now, lace some elastic through the waistband in the back and tack it down on the raw edges of the pants to keep it held up over your tush (and pull in any gappage that might occur). You'll want to make that elastic fairly tight - a good 5"-6" shorter than what's left of the pants. Tack one side down at the raw edge, and then lace it through the waistband, and tack it on the other side.
Next, we're going to "fill in our belly hole" with that belly panel. This can be a little complicated since you're working with two curves, but you can do it so long as you're careful. Pin the panel so that "right sides are together" along the entire curve of the panel and pants. It's not going to lay flat and nice, but don't worry... when you "turn it right side out" it'll be fine. Sew with a 1/2" seam allowance around the raw edges, and you've got a semi-paneled pant!

**warning: bare belly ahead!**

These pants are now REALLY snug, but it's not due to the belly panel ;) This style allows for the belly to grow, without changing the construction of the rest of the pant - perfect for those "boy belly's" out there where apparently, the only thing that changes is your tummy. As you can see... I'm having a girl.


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