***In an effort to motivate myself to finish all the gifts I have coming down the pipeline, I am sharing what I have been making here on the blog. Hopefully it will inspire you to branch out and create a little something for someone you love. Handmade items can be the best kind of love!***
Ever since I spotted Purl Soho's city gym shorts tutorial, I knew I wanted to make Lou some. Lou plays basketball in the winter, but is always bummed by the gross "boy" short choices and since I have little desire for her to be a walking billboard or spend that much on athletic shorts, making some was the perfect solution.
Luckily this gift cost me $ZERO$ additional dollars, as I already had all the supplies on hand. Mostly leftovers from other projects, which is the best kind of feeling. When you make something really special without needed to spend more money or waste more supplies. Looking at the picture below (left to right), silky-cotton fabric purchased from MOOD, leftover from a shirt project, blue chambray from the bottom half of a maxi skirt I shortened from Old Navy, and lastly, printed linen, left over from a summer dress I made. The bias strips (accents on the short legs) were also made from bits and pieces from my fabric stash.
After downloading and printing the pattern out, I made the bias tape. Making bias tape is not like riding a bicycle for me. I always have to go back and read up on how to make it. EVERY TIME! However, once I wrap my brain around it, it goes really fast and feels pretty easy peasy. I do own a bias tape maker like this one, which is helpful, but not a necessary tool. You could also purchase some bias tape at the store or get super cute bias tape from this etsy shop. I wanted to add a little pop with the bias tape, but subdued would look lovely too!
The pattern is really easy to make and Purl does such a great job with the instructions. The blue linen was the first one I made and I didn't cut the waistband the right width, so I had to modify that pair, but the pattern has wiggle room for those times when you fudge something. I don't own a serger, so I just overlocked all the exposed seams. I also added a tab in the back so that Lou would know which was the backside of the shorts.
I was a little bit worried that the short would come out too skimpy, but the length is really good for running, which is what Leah will be doing in them. But if you want to make the shorts a little longer, scroll down the pattern page on Purl Soho site because there are a lot of great suggestions about length modification and how to add pockets as well. Overall, high marks for the pattern and the shorts look great, don't they!