Thursday, March 3, 2011

Old V-Neck Shirts into "Poquito Pants"

My husband cleaned out some old V-Neck T-shirts from his collection and I couldn't resist the temptation to make them into non-waterproof side-snapping training pants.  I modeled the pattern after Poquito Pants, which I LOVED using when my son was young.  They fit on his hips, and trim, so that he wore them for many months and I didn't feel like they hindered his movement at all.  At $18 each, I didn't buy enough of them (by the time I realized how great they were, he was too big for their greatness), and hope my version works as wonderfully as the original.

To make these, I traced my trainers, and added 1/4" on each tab where they were folded under (to account for seam allowance).  I didn't add a seam allowance on any of the other edges, since they were bound with FOE, which doesn't add any width (or so I thought).  Mine ended up a bit wide through the middle when compared to the original at the end.  This was probably a cutting error, but could have been a pattern drafting mistake.  If I make these again (which I probably won't), I would make it thinner through the crotch by half an inch so that the soaker hits the FOE instead of having any extra space on either side.

I used two of the pattern for each trainer, and got enough for about two and a half trainers per t-shirt.  I stitched my soaker onto the inner piece using a wide zig-zag before assembling the trainer.  For the soaker, I used scraps from these shirts, plus other scraps.  I have gotten into the habit of cutting scraps into the soaker shape and have a bin full of soakers ready to be used when needed.  In the original training pant, hers are thick through the middle, and mine ended up a  lot less so. I am confident they will hold "one wet," though, which is my intention.

She used a serger to attach the FOE, and I used a zig-zag stitch.  I left each edge open as she did, then folded them over at the end and zig-zagged across the rough edge to keep it from fraying (she serged here).  The original of these had hardly stretched FOE, and I only lightly stretched mine to imitate this.  Maybe this is how the real Poquito Pants have such a long life for babies (so many months' of use at a time when babies grow and change a lot).

She did one layer of snaps on the front tabs and I did the same with my Kam snaps.  On the back, she attached three sets of two snaps.  I recall not using them all when my son was young, and when I spaced mine one inch apart, as I do when making diapers, the area covered by snaps was the same on mine as hers (i.e. hers were spaced more closely than I thought was necessary).  So I did two sets on the back, and can go back and add a third row if necessary.  I think that my FOE ended up being pulled more tightly than hers, and perhaps the third row of snaps makes up for some of the lack of pulling on hers??? I am curious how this modification will end up working out.

I am really excited to use these.  I did them in white ~ except the couple with red FOE across just the back which my 2.5 year old BEGGED me to add while nicely sitting in my lap as I made a few of these.  How could I argue with some extra sewing time and an interested child?.  I used white because that's the color of the old t-shirts, plus I wanted the option to use bleach and really keep them clean if need be.  Their peak time of use will be the first three months if I got the sizing right.  If all goes as smoothly as it did with our 2.5 year old, then that is the time that Baby will be still occasionally pooping out of the toilet (our son was reliable pooping in the potty by 3 months thanks to EC/ diaper-free baby).

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  1. Repurposing old clothes is a good idea. Have you tried recycling other types of clothes, like old jeans for instance? We have lots of those at home, and it would be a shame to throw them away.

    Lee Dove

  2. I used old jeans for this project...



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