Posts Tagged ‘betz white’

Men’s Boxer Shorts [Free Pattern + Juxaposey llama Fabric]

Hi all! We are all back from our spring break, feeling fresh and revived.  It’s the perfect time for me to release my first free pattern. Eek! This whole thing started because I felt I was neglecting my husband, sewing-wise. Here is the deal, sewing for men can be difficult. It’s certainly harder than choosing what I want for myself or even my kids.  Plus, unless you are sewing for one of those Florida dudes in need of an endless supply of breezy, patterned shirts it’s also a little dull.  But…you know what isn’t dull? Boxer Shorts! Full of fun patterns and colors and easy to construct, men’s boxer shorts are basically the wild and crazy guy of a dude’s chest of drawers. So guys! Guess what? It’s time to bust out some awesome fabric and get cranking out boxer shorts!  I picked llamas and a fun print from Betz White’s new Juxtaposey line. In fact, Betz really is the inspiration for this whole project.  When she asked me to make something in her new line I knew it had to be boxer’s short for my dude.

Remember a long time ago when I made these boxer’s shorts for him? I was so amped up about them and was promising a free pattern for men’s boxer shorts.  Well, you know what? Making a digital pattern was harder than I expected and I kept putting it off.  And putting it off.  And tinkering a little bit and then putting it off again.  Oof. Finally, when Betz White asked me if I would make something in her next line of fabric, Juxtaposey, I knew it was time to get serious. I mean, the first bunch of boxers where made in her Dutch Treat fabric line. If she can release an entire new line of fabrics, surely I can create one pattern! So, I’m so proud to present this free pattern for Men’s Boxer Shorts in Juxtaposey fabric.  (*whisper voice* proud but also a little timid and scared..so be gentle with me.  I hope everything works like it is supposed to. I certainly worked on perfecting the pattern for a long time but still it’s kinda freaky to put this out into the world. know what I mean?)

Men's Boxer Shorts [Free Pattern for Juxtaposey Fabric tour] || a happy stitch

So much dude-age in boxer shorts!  Before we start enthusiastically taping, cutting and stitching I should lay out some disclaimers. First, I made these to fit my husband. The pattern is one size and I would guess it is close to a medium or average? I really don’t know. His boxers were in a pathetic state so his measurements are the basis for this design.  You can always make the waist smaller or looser by varying the elastic length but there will certainly be men for whom this pattern doesn’t fit. Sorry about that. Maybe by the time Betz comes out with her next line of fabric I will have figured out size grading! We can hope.

The second disclaimer is this is my first time making a pattern in a digital form so be gentle with any mistakes. Oh, did I already say that?

Ok, let’s start making some men’s boxer shorts!

You will need :

+ Free Pattern, available here.

+ 1 ¼ yard of cotton fabric

+ 1 yard of 3/4” wide elastic

+ Spool of matching thread

+ Standard sewing supplies, of course

Instructions: 

  • Print out the free pattern, available here. Be sure to print it sized 100% and not to scale. If you aren’t sure if it printed correctly, measure the 2” box on page 1.
  • Tape together the pattern as show below and cut out the two patterns piece, one front and one back.

Men's Boxer Shorts [Free Pattern for Juxtaposey Fabric tour] || a happy stitch

  • True up the fabric and place each pattern piece on your fabric and cut out 2 front pieces and 2 back pieces. Be sure to draw the indicated markings. Hint: If you fold your fabric so that the right sides face each other you will better prepare yourself to start sewing.

Men's Boxer Shorts [Free Pattern for Juxtaposey Fabric tour] || a happy stitch

  • Begin by placing the two front pieces rights sides together. Draw, with a marking tool, a line from the top notch to the dot marked at the bottom of the faux fly.
  • Stitch the crotch seam by sewing along the line you drew with a basting stitch and at the dot mark switch to a standard stitch length and sew the rest of the curve with a 4/8” seam allowance.
  • Clip along the curve of the seam allowance and then iron the seam allowance toward the wearer’s left side.
  • Beginning at the dot marking, sew along the curve of the crotch 1/4” to the side of the seam allowance to secure it in place. You will be sewing through the seam allowance fabric and and the boxer short fabric. This is a visible stitch.

Men's Boxer Shorts [Free Pattern for Juxtaposey Fabric tour] || a happy stitch

  • While facing the right side of the front of the boxer shorts, sew a stitch 4/8” in from the edge of the faux fly. Mirror that stitch with another one 3/8” to the left. If you want to, you can sew a strong zigzag at about 1/2” before and up to the seam. This will hold the faux fly in place and create a classic boxers look.

Men's Boxer Shorts [Free Pattern for Juxtaposey Fabric tour] || a happy stitch

  • Repeat with the back crotch seam without worrying about the faux fly, (sew a 4/8” seam allowance with right-sides together. Clip curves, press seam allowance to the wearer’s left side and stitch a visible stitch 1/4” to the side of the seam.)

For the side seams and inseam, we will be sewing a flat-felled seam.  You are going to love this technique. It not only hides all raw edges of fabric but it keeps the fabric laying flat reducing bulk and it’s a super durable stitch.  Plus, it’s a very professional seam so you will feel like a champ. As an aside: I looked at a lot of my husband’s boxers and they all had flat-felled seams, it’s interesting that such a basic (and cheap) garment has such quality construction. Who knew? .

Men's Boxer Shorts [Free Pattern for Juxtaposey Fabric tour] || a happy stitchFollowing the numbers in the picture:

1. Begin by stitching the front and back side seam of the boxer’s WRONG sides together with a 5/8″ seam allowance.

2. Cut ONLY ONE of the seam allowances down to half the size of the other.

3. Press the seam allowances with an iron such that the full-size seam allowance covers the half-sized seam allowance. Fold the full-size seam allowance in half over the half-sized one to meet the original stitching line and press it flat against the fabric.

4. Stitch along the edge of the fold.  Admire your beautiful stitch! You are such a pro!

+ Complete the inseam at the bottom that connects the crotch to each leg in the same manner.

+ To make the elastic waistband you will first need to measure your wearer’s waist and cut the correct length of elastic. Be sure to measure at the point on their waist that they are most comfortable having the waistband sit on their body. Subtract 6” from this measurement and that is how long you cut the elastic. If you don’t have your wearer nearby, you can wing it and cut about 32” of elastic. Set the elastic aside.  Note: Most 3/4″ has a good deal of stretch but if yours doesn’t, for some reason, you might not want to reduce the length by 6″ or it will be too tight.

+ Make a casing for the elastic: Fold down and press the whole waistband by 1” and then repeat another 1”. Stitch along the bottom fold, leaving a 5-6” opening at the back.

Men's Boxer Shorts [Free Pattern for Juxtaposey Fabric tour] || a happy stitch

  • Attach a safety pin to one end of the elastic and use it to wind through the casing making sure it doesn’t twist.
  • Overlap both ends of the elastic by 1” and stitch a small box with a diagonal line to secure the ends together. Place closed loop fully inside casing and work with your hands to evenly spread the waistband gathers.

Men's Boxer Shorts [Free Pattern for Juxtaposey Fabric tour] || a happy stitchMen's Boxer Shorts [Free Pattern for Juxtaposey Fabric tour] || a happy stitchMen's Boxer Shorts [Free Pattern for Juxtaposey Fabric tour] || a happy stitch

  • Stitch the remaining opening in the casing closed.
  • To ensure that elastic doesn’t roll inside of the casing, we are going to sew three or four straight stitches through the elastic and the fabric. We want to do this carefully, however, to be sure we don’t lose any elasticity. To do this, pull on the waistband until the fabric is fully flat while you sew the stitches.

Men's Boxer Shorts [Free Pattern for Juxtaposey Fabric tour] || a happy stitch

  • Once you have sewn through the waistband, you can use a seam ripper to unpick the basting stitch of the faux fly.

Men's Boxer Shorts [Free Pattern for Juxtaposey Fabric tour] || a happy stitch

  • Hem each of the shorts legs by folding 1/2” and then another 1/2” and sew at 3/8” along the fold.

You are Done! And looking sharp if I do say so myself!

Men's Boxer Shorts [Free Pattern for Juxtaposey Fabric tour] || a happy stitch

I truly had a hard time choosing which prints to use from this collection. They really are all really fun and would make a great pair of boxers!

Juxtaposey fabric collection from Betz WhiteJuxtaposey fabric collection from Betz White

I really hope you like the pattern and find it useful and fun, friends. I think boxers can be a witty, quirky way to sew in funky fabric for men. I can imagine a luxuriant version in Liberty on Valentine’s day! Happy sewing all. Please share with me if you do make any, I will be over the moon!  Tag me on IG so I can see them!

Dutch Treat Boxer Shorts

Dutch Treat Boxer Shorts in four colors_ a happy stitch

There is something new hanging on the clothesline and it’s for dudes….boxers!  It has been a long time since I stitched something for my husband, K.  In fact, his handmade pajama pants are so well-worn they are nearly thread-bare at the waistband.  I just don’t sew for him very much and to be honest, I find it hard to sew for dudes.  What would I make? He wears t-shirts and neutral colored shorts for the most part. Not that exciting. If I could knit, I think I would have more options but as it is, I am limited.  So, when Betz White asked me if I wanted to play with her new fabric line, Dutch Treat, I decided it was time to make something for K.  Thankfully, I took one look at her charcoal and yellow print and saw boxer shorts written all over them.  Hence, the cheeky name Dutch Treat Boxer Shorts!  I made it my Project Sew It challenge for June to create a boxer shorts pattern that fits him. (more…)

Baby Blanket Teddy Bear

Baby Blanket Teddy Bear

My oldest son, C,  turned eight a few weeks ago and it was surprisingly emotional for me.  Well, ok, I got emotional after the dust cleared.  I do not mean that figuratively; there was dust everywhere because having twelve kids play soccer and run wild in our backyard kicked up an insane amount of dust. But, by the time the party balloons were sagging and the house was strewn with bits of colorful wrapping paper and squashed juice boxes I got emotional.  Eight.  It’s so big.  It’s so definitively big.  It seems to have marked a moment for me when I stopped and noticed that his babyhood, the babyhood that introduced me to motherhood, was receding into the background.  Without a doubt.  I can only see it faintly in the distance and much as I am thrilled about the person he is growing up to be it’s hard to see it go.

One of my gifts to him was this baby blanket teddy bear.  Admittedly, he’s too old for teddies.  I mean, he still sleeps with his very special teddy bear but he doesn’t ask for new ones.  It’s all beyblades, legos and Pokemon cards.  I made the bear anyway and I made his patches out of one of his baby blanket.  This baby blanket teddy bear was made to commemorate the moment, more than anything.

Baby Blanket Teddy Bear

When I made the baby blanket polar bears for J, I knew that I would need to make one for C as well.  (And yes, they both had baby blankets with the same color and pattern! One in fleece, one in flannel.  Cute, huh?!)  The pattern for this bear is called Tagalong Teddy and it’s from the Betz White book Present Perfect but is also available for free (!) on Sew Mama Sew.  It was really easy to make, as is usually the case with Betz’s patterns, the instructions are clear and straightforward.  I also got to practice my embroidery…more practice than I wanted since I did a backward blanket stitch and had to REDO all of it.  Rookie mistake on my part.  Ugh. The white fabric is a soft, velour-like fabric that is super snuggly.

Baby Blanket Teddy Bear

Perfect for a little bit of snuggling from this boy.  He’s so sweet, this eight year old of mine.  He’s private and camera shy and the most amazing big brother.  I keep telling him he would make a great teacher, he can be heartbreakingly helpful.  He’s also ridiculously funny, stoic and easily hurt and so thoughtfully aware of the world around him.  More and more I’m aware that those stories are now his and not mine to tell.

I do think that he likes his new bear.

Baby Blanket Teddy Bear

Baby Blanket Teddy Bear

Baby Blanket Teddy Bear

Do see it? That tiny glimpse of babyhood?  It’s just barely there but I think I saw some. *sniff*

I’m also sharing another project on Betz’s blog today, be sure to check out my forest friends finger puppets! 

Betz White Sewing Collective :: Baby Blanket Polar Bears

Polar Bears made a Baby Blanket for the belly and ears! The perfect way to transform a special blanket into a special toy!  a happy stitch

Ever since I started blogging I’ve admired Betz White so I was over-the-moon when she asked me to be a part of her sewing collective this year (For real. Pinch me!).  My first project was making these polar bear stuffed animals. The details are all on Betz’s blog but what makes these guys super-extra-special is that I used baby blankets for the bellies and ears! Don’t miss the full post with more info on the Flurry and Fluffy pattern and the changes I made.

Polar Bears made a Baby Blanket for the belly and ears! The perfect way to transform a special blanket into a special toy! | a happy stitch

Disclosure: I was paid and given a free pattern but my opinions are always my own.

Glitz Blitz :: My Fabulous Leather and Gold Travel Bag

glitz blitz travel bag

Meet my fabulous Glitz Blitz Travel bag! It involved successfully putting in a shockingly good-looking metal zipper and sewing with leather.  Consider it true love.

It started a few weeks ago when the folks at Michael Miller emailed me wondering if I would be interested in receiving some of their Glitz fabric, making something and blogging about it.  I almost fell out of my chair.  Me?  Of course I said yes.   I was expecting to get a yard or so of fabric and was literally floored when a huge bag of fabric arrived the next day.

glitz selection

I’m really psyched about this fabric.  And, not just because they flattered me.  C’mon, It’s gold with pastel!  Shiny, awesome gold highlights…on chevron and tiny-dot ombre as well as fantastic bold polka dots.  What is not to love?  It’s just really exciting.  After much hemming and haw-ing (should I make a girly, ruffly dress for one of our little friends?  Or a necktie for the boys in mint and gold?!)  I decided to make a travel bag with the leather bottom.  It’s the same leather I used to make my necklace.  This glitz-y fabric was just begging to be paired with something neutral and quite honestly I wanted to make something for myself with this lovely stuff.

For Christmas I received a subscription to Creativebug, so I watched Betz White’s class on making a travel bag and used her pattern.  I was a little worried that it would be hard to work with the leather but it wasn’t.

leather stitches up close

A couple of things I learned about leather:  Always use a leather sewing needle and 100% polyester thread.  You CAN iron leather, just use a good pressing cloth, never iron directly on the leather or it will leave a shiny mark and make you sad.  You can even iron enough to adhere leather to interfacing, which was a delightful thing to discover.  Just don’t ever forget that pressing cloth.  I may need to raid the thrift shop of leather now.

mint green pocketI added an inside, elasticized pocket because it’s always nice to have extra pockets inside a glamourous travel bag.

zipper detail for glitz blitz travel bag

I was very pleased I managed to align the stripes well around the beautiful zipper.

It’s hard to tell the size of the bag so I included one of me holding it.  It’s a tiny thing, really, but just the right size for the very few fancy things I usually bring with me when I travel.  I’m not really a makeup girl in normal life but you know when you travel sometimes there are special occasions.

glitz blitz travel bag with leather bottom

I ended up making a second bag and I’m tempted to make a few more.  It always amazes me how quickly a 2nd or 3rd item come together.  Now that I know the joys of sewing with leather and gold, I’m feeling unstoppable.  (Taps fingertips together in the universal symbol of evil villain-esse).

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