Friday 4 March 2016

Pattern Emporium's Baby and Toddler Harem Pants ~ Review

I sewed up three pairs of harem pants as a recent gift for a newborn baby. They were a quick and easy sew and the new mum loved them.

A review of Pattern Emporium's Baby and Toddler Harem Pants ~ Threading My Way

I used Pattern Emporium's Baby and Toddler Harem Pants pattern, which fits newborn to size 2. You can purchase a separate pattern which fits ages 3 - 10 years. 

The PDF pattern is very easy to tile and tape together, with the basic version only using four pages. I couldn't see an option to just print the size you need, but that doesn't bother me as I prefer to print all sizes and then trace the size/s I'm sewing. The pattern also includes a separate file that you can take to a print shop.

There are several versions within the one pattern - basic, ruffle, dinosaur, mock pockets, topstitched pockets and bound edge pockets. I went with the easiest, the basic harem pants.

This is the first pattern where I can recall a Contents page, a very handy feature. You can see at a glance which pages are relevant to the version chosen, for both printing and instructions.

There is a size chart included, giving height, weight, hip and inside leg measurements, as well as a note re which dimensions to refer to when deciding which size to sew. 

Cutting dimensions for the waistband and elastic are included in the same measurement chart, which, for me, meant it took  a while to find as I was looking for a separate chart.

There is no finished garment size chart.

Measurements are given in both centimetres and inches. The centimetre measurements are written as decimals (57.5), while inches are written as fractions (22 5/8). The designer is Australian, so the dimensions would have been worked out in centimetres first and then converted to inches - no problems there. However, I would find it easier to read if the fractions were typed as fractions; eg: 22⅝ instead of 22 5/8. Not a biggie and it most certainly wouldn't stop me from using or buying Pattern Emporium's patterns.. Even though I'm Aussie, I still prefer the imperial system for measuring length. 

Right at the beginning, clearly set out on pages 6/7, are all those little things you want to know:- glossary, seam allowance, printing, measurements, pattern assembly, fabric recommendations, etc. Nothing is left to chance. This is a very detailed pattern.

Pictures, in the form of photos, are clear, with at least one photo for each step. Seam lines and a few diagrams have been added to some photos. I don't mind if pattern designers include diagrams or photos, as long as they illustrate each step and are easy to interpret. 

All necessary information is marked on the patterns pieces - grain line, notches for matching, hem line, etc. There's even a key if you are not familiar with pattern markings. I'll be honest and say I didn't bother with marking the notches as it's such a simple pattern, but if you're new to making pants, you'll be glad they're included.

Size lines on the pattern are in different colours and patterns, making them very easy to trace.

The waistband is a separate piece to the body of the harem pants. I chose to make mine with the same fabric, but next time I think I'll use contrasting fabrics. A light weight interfacing is used on the waistband.

Basically there is one pattern piece that forms both the front and back of one side. The back, of course, has a higher rise than the front.

I made a few modifications - nothing wrong with the pattern, just a personal preference.

In the pattern instead of turning the leg hems and the waistband twice, they are finished with an overlocking (serger) stitch. I finished mine by first turning under ¼" and then turned again for the hem or waistband. If doing a double turn, you'll need to lengthen the legs a little when cutting out, or use narrower elastic, as I have done.

I have chosen to use a narrower elastic for both waistband and legs hems - ¾" for waistband and ¼" for leg hems. The narrower elastic in the waistband allowed for a small ruffle.

I topstitched all seams - front and back crotch and inner legs - instead of just back crotch. There are no side seams.

I added the waistband by sewing to the wrong side first, then edge stitching to the right side - the opposite way to the pattern.

Instead of making them all the same size, I sewed up 3 months, 6 months and 12 months, so as she grows out of one pair, the next will fit. Here's the little recipient wearing the smallest of the three baby harem pants. Don't they look adorable!

  • 3 month - Scribble Pattern  - Windham Fabrics
  • 6 month - Peter Pan - slightly thinner than a quilting cotton
  • 12 month - Spring Fling - David Walker for Free Spirit

This is a great pattern, and one I can see me using again and again. I loved the ease of sewing and the finished look, and the new mum thought they were gorgeous.  I've already purchased the Kids Harem Pants pattern, with a size range of 3 - 10 years.


Not so long ago, I said that my go to gift for a newborn had become Baby Wash Cloths packaged in a little Fabric Basket. Think I might have to revise that to harem pants. What's your go to gift for a newborn?

If you are looking for baby gift ideas, check out out the Everything Baby link party. Feel free to add your own projects

... Pam

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  1. I love these pants and the idea of doing them in three sizes. My go-to gift for babies has been a quilt and bibs, but I may be changing that to some of these cute outfits.

  2. Those little pants are so cute. Aren't you the smart one giving the three different sizes for the baby!

  3. WOW you should be a pattern tester - your review is really thorough! And your pants are too adorable - I want to pick up that lil muffin and play with her toes :D

  4. These are so sweet Pam, so lovely.

    Thanks for sharing at Creative Mondays..

  5. They look so cute on those little legs! Love the Peter Pan fabric especially, very sweet.

  6. Thank-you for a lovely review Pam. I'm so happy you liked them.
    Pattern Emporium

    1. Thanks for stopping by, Kate, and for the great pattern.

  7. I agree with Sandra! You should be a reviewer of patterns. Great attention to detail. I just finished making some harem pants using a different pattern in knit fabric. These would’ve been so much easier! I plan to get this pattern based on your review - thank you so much. Wish I’d have found this first! My go to baby gift has been burp cloths and bandana bibs, but I’m liking your idea of three different sizes of these adorable pants. Maybe with some onesies

    1. Thanks for the feedback, Rita. Giving onesies with harem pants is a great idea!

  8. I appreciated looking at your article. It is essential and informative for everyone. Keep posting always. I am very thankful to you. Thanks. sonalika tiger

  9. Awesome job! The best dressed babies on the block Cute Baby Bottoms


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