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Now I’m all about the plaid! In part 2 I work on the paper bag waistline and hem of these glorious culottes finishing them off, and now all I can think of is what matching top to create with with leftover fabric. These came together so easy, and you really can’t go wrong with an elastic waist.

Culottes Pattern

Again I’m sewing up our Culottes pattern from the November 2018 issue of BurdaStyle magazine, and altering the waistline to be more like a paper-bag waist style with elastic. Last week I stitched together the main body of my culottes and now I’m ready for the waistband!

Step 1

To start my waistband, I serge-finished both edges of the right side. The left waistband seam will be completely concealed so I didn’t finish it.

Step 2

On the left waistband edge I first pin matched the plaids, then stitched together and pressed my seam allowances open.

Step 3

Then on the right side I stitched about 3/4" from the bottom, and starting from the top to make about a 1" opening in the seam. I backstitched at each end of the opening well.

Step 4

I then pressed my left waistband seam allowances open also pressing the allowances away from the small opening. I also pressed my waistband in half with the wrong sides together.

Step 5

To attach the waistband I pinned the lower edges, right sides together matching up the waistband seams with the side seams of my culottes.

Step 6

I stitched all three layers at my 1/2" seam allowance. I made sure that my waistband’s side opening once sewn and pressed up was indeed on the inside.

Step 7

Once sewn, I serge-finished all my allowances together and pressed down.

Step 8

I then located my inside waistband opening.

Step 9

Before inserting my elastic into my waistband, I wrapped the elastic around my waist to get the ideal length. Then I cut with an allowance to sew together once in the waistband.

Step 10

Using a large safety pin, I threaded the elastic all around my waistband until it came out the other side.

Step 11

I made sure that my elastic wasn’t twisted at all and then stitched the ends together.

Step 12

With the elastic now fully inside my waistband, I pushed the elastic right to the waistline seam and pinned slightly above the other edge. These pins will hold the elastic down until I stitch it in place to keep the elastic near the waistline seam to create that paper-bag waist style.

Step 13

Be careful to not stitch through the elastic, I sewed around the waistband. Tip: for plaid fabrics I followed a plaid line to help keep my stitching perfectly straight.

Step 14

Voila! I’m now obsessed with this waist treatment for a pair of pants.

Step 15

They’re almost done – all that’s left is the hem. I serge-finished the hem edges and pressed up my hem allowance amount and pinned in place.

Step 16

Finally I sewed my hem in place perfectly in line with a plaid stripe to make it invisible! I know I could have hand stitched it to truly make it invisible, but I get inpatient nearing the end of a project, haha.

Ok BurdaStylers, I now need your help! I have enough plaid fabric leftover to make a matching top, and I think I need to wear this entire plaid outfit to a holiday party this year… Which top pattern should I sew?


Our Retro Top, or our Puff Sleeve Shirt? LEt me know in the comments.

Happy Sewing!

Meg Healy Blog Signature


  • E2067140-d8b9-49cc-9eae-515b48dc7e3b_large

    Nov 19, 2018, 02.51 AMby smaugandi

    Hello! I’m very new and I just don’t know where to find fabrics. Local fabric shops have limited selections. Do you guys have any suggestions on online fabric stores?

    1 Reply
  • Photo_on_3-2-17_at_6_09_pm_2_large

    Nov 16, 2018, 02.38 PMby tessi

    if it were for me, I would make a close-fitting knit top in a solid color( tucked in to show the cute paper-bag waist) and make a little plaid shrug or cropped over-top to go over the knit.

    2 Replies
    • Meg_healy_burdastyle_90_90_large

      Nov 16, 2018, 03.27 PMby MegH

      Ohhh, I like your thinking!! This is why I love to ask for help from our members – or I could just cut the sleeves in the plaid and make the body in a complimentary solid!

    • Missing

      Nov 16, 2018, 03.48 PMby kerekeva

      Yes! I agree. Slim close fitted top of one of the colors.
      Maybe a shall/ cape from the leftover fabric?

  • Missing

    Nov 15, 2018, 04.55 PMby mfelicita

    The Retro top. The puff sleeve shirt in plaid fabric is going to be to much for your frame

  • Missing

    Nov 15, 2018, 02.05 PMby Vernetta

    the short sleeve—it would look great layered over a long sleeve top.

  • Burdalogo2_large

    Nov 15, 2018, 01.56 PMby Evmorales

    Oh God, I love both! You could make the short sleeve and wear the pea coat from the sew along over…but I remember you leave in Canada, so pea coat is for “summer” days hehehe. Go with the long sleeves then!

    • This is a question
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