Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Wanted: Summer Shorts

Shorts, shorts, where art thou shorts? Today, I went on a shopping quest to find some summer shorts. More specifically, I went on a thrift store shopping trip to find shorts. Sadly, I was met with rows and rows of all sorts on interesting and downright hideous bottoms, none of which suited my taste.

I know what you all are probably thinking. Why not stop by the mall, run to a few stores, and come out with a few pairs of shorts for those hot muggy days?  The answer? That option lacks the treasure hunt element that I love about thrift shopping. I do love digging though rack after rack of others castoffs until I find that one piece that makes it all worth it. So, what's the solution? Sew some shorts of course!!

 There is only one little hiccup in my plan. You see, pattern companies are still offering up shorts patterns that look like this.

No, this is not some 80's pattern that I dug out of hiding. This lovely little gem is still available from McCalls.
Not exactly what I had in mind for my summer wardrobe. Lets move on, shall we?

To be fair, McCalls does indeed redeem itself by being the only big four company to offer a basic shorts pattern in a variety of lengths. I will definitely be picking this one up at the next sale.

The shortest version of these uses less than one yard of 60" wide fabric. I always love when you can make a cute item without using a bolts worth of fabric.

Vogue offers one shorts pattern. The styling is quite interesting in the picture and it makes it a little hard to tell exactly what they look like, but the line drawing looks like a standard pair of shorts.

Simplicity also has this wardrobe pattern which includes a pair of shorts.

There are quite a few more shorts pattern options, but sadly they all contain elastic waists. I don't have anything against elastic waists, they do have their place in some garments, but for summer shorts that will be worn out of the house I want some sort of real closure.

In other sewing related news I am about half way done with a skirt that is loosely inspired by a Kate Spade skirt. The verdict is still out on whether or not it is going to zip, as I wasn't careful when choosing a size and the pattern happens to be a Burda pattern, which I had never made before.

Hopefully tomorrow I will have a post on some RTW shorts that I will use for my inspiration. As always, I LOVE your feedback. Do you wear shorts in the summer? Have you made shorts before? Have you used any of the patterns that I mentioned?

Happy Sewing!


  1. I don't wear shorts (although with my sudden willingness to wear skirts and dresses, it's only a matter of time before I start wearing shorts) and I've never made them before. I have attempted pants, and they taught me that pants are hard and take a bit of work to fit properly. My only attempt at pants was using Simplicity 2367. While they were a failure, there was one reviewer on PR who made up the shorts, and they are adorable! The pipping really added to it.

    Good luck on the shorts!

  2. I really like Simplicity 3850.

  3. I made M5391 with few expectations and ended up loooooving them. The pattern went together so easily and I thought I actually looked decent in the shorts (I hate myself in shorts). Good luck! Once you find a pattern you like you won't look back :)

  4. LOL, I remember the first McCall's pattern you show! I made them like 15 years ago! Even back then I only used them as pj bottoms. Love the styling on the envelope! You would think they could have updated it by now!

  5. I've never sewn shorts, but I've had my eye on the Built By Wendy Pattern (by Simplicity, but I think it's OOP) for a long time. Burda also has a few cute pattern available for download on their site.

    I'd love to hear your experiences sewing the shorts once your finished with them. Has to be easier than pants, right?

  6. Okay, I have another suggestion. New Look 6873. I just picked up this pattern for the basic A line skirt (which is coming along very nicely), but reading through the reviews, a few people made really cute versions of the shorts.

    Okay, I swear I'm done. :D

  7. Thank you all so much for all the pattern suggestions! I will definitely check them out. :]