If you have got all the way to this, the sixth and last of my knicker making mini series, thank you so much for sticking with me. I hope it has been interesting and useful to you. For this final post I am going to share with you some of my favourite free patterns, some of the different ways to use up your scrap fabric when making them along with some examples of the different fold over elastic you can buy.
The pattern I have been using all through this blog is the Megan Nielsen Acacia Pattern. As I said all the way back on my first post, this a good well designed pattern available in a 34″ – 58″ (86 – 147cm) hip.
As it is a pattern that my daughter finds very comfy I have made several versions and enjoy experimenting using up my scraps and off cuts.
One small point on using scraps and off cuts to make up your knickers. I mentioned in the first post that patterns are designed for fabric with a certain amount of stretch to ensure that they fit comfortably. When you piece jersey fabric together the seams will mean you will loose some of that stretch. This is not a problem as you can always go up a size or two to ensure they fit or use a pattern that requires a smaller amount of stretch than your pieced fabric has. Also, another thing to consider when piecing is that some jersey fabric has 2 way stretch (side to side) while some has a 4 way stretch (lengthwise stretch as well as side to side) you will need to take the direction of stretch in to consideration when piecing your fabric. I have only pieced fabric on grain so far but will have a play with using the 4 way stretch in both directions one day soon.
Here are some of the Acicia knickers I have made
Using Lycra instead of Jersey with fancy fold over elastic.
Using lace for the front and Lycra for the back.
This is an example of where I trimmed the front seam allowance and laid the back over the front to finish the side seam
Here I have inserted two pieces of lace which allowed me use quite small pieces of jersey for the front.
Using different fabric for the front and back
To make the following I joined several pieces together to create either the front or the back or both, using different techniques to join them together
Overlocked and top stitched inside. Overlocked and top stitched on the outside. Sewn together then a decorative stitch over the seam to strengthen and tidy the raw edges, this could also be created with the raw edges on the outside if you want.
Another free pattern that I like is the Make Bra Hipster pattern . This pattern, however is only available in hip sizes 34 1/2″ – 42 1/2″ (88-108cm) and does not specify a preferred % stretch for your fabric.
This pattern has a higher waist and lower leg than the Acacia.
This pair was made with off cuts from two dresses that were too short for my daughter so I cut them down to make tops. Glad I kept the bits.
Another pattern that I like is the Cloth Habit Rosy Ladyshorts . This pattern comes in sizes 32 – 46″ (81 -117cm) and is designed for fabric with a 60-70% stretch. These remind me of the shape of knickers your grandmother would look at with the “and what use are they” expression on her face, but they are so comfy I think they are worth trying out.
This is also the pattern that I mentioned in the side seams post that does not have a side seam, so the fold over elastic is attached to both the leg and the waist edges in the round. The leg edges are not as curved as the Acacia so the elastic can be attached in one step, but just to be sure I attached it using the two step method.
One other pattern I like, but is not free, is the Lekala #3256 . This is a download only website that uses your own measurements to create a pattern, via a computer program. The standard size range goes from 32″ – 47″ (82 – 120cm) hip, but I was unable to check if you could add personal measurements beyond these sizes. Another bonus of this pattern is that it is sold royalty free, so if you want to make knickers from this pattern to sell you can.
I also want to point out that there is a seemingly endless range of fold over elastic available to buy. Not only can you get it in a wide range of colours, including patterned, widths, with picot or decorative edges, as in the lycra knickers at the beginning of this blog. However, there is also as wide a range of quality too, so don’t assume it will all be good quality.
To finish, I would like to show you one more free pattern, the Madalynne Barrett Bralette. This pattern is not for me, I prefer a more structured garment, but is a great pattern to turn your knickers in to a bralette and knicker set. I have used my two step method to add the fold over elastic and I love how it looks.
Thank you again for reading my knicker making mini series. I hope you have enjoyed it and have found some hints, tips and inspiration to start your own adventures in to making.