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kcwc day 2 - Big Butt Pants

I've wanted to make the Big Butt Pants by Made by Rae ever since I saw these awesome versions a few months ago.  I've made Anna Maria Horner's Quick Change Trousers which are somewhat similar, but I liked that the Big Butt Pants aren't reversible. They use less fabric per pair.  And let's face it, here in Texas there aren't many days for wearing pants that are two layers thick.

I made the first pair in turquoise corduroy last week.  These pants are addictive!  There are a ton of options.  With a cuff, without a cuff.  With ruffles, without ruffles.  With pockets, without pockets.  With a contrasting 'seat' (as my grandma would say) or without one. 

kcwc day 2 pants

Having made these pants three times, here are a few things I learned along the way.

1.  Unless I missed it, the pattern does not tell you to overlock your seams with a serger or zigzag stitch, except on the cuff.  It looked like the seams were finished using a pinking shears.  While some people do prefer to finish their seams this way, I personally do not like to use this method as I have experienced some fraying.  I also like the extra secure hold of overlocked seams.  With the way my kids wear out their clothes, and given the fact that their handmades are handed down to be worn again and again, we have definitely worn out pants down to the serger threads.

I did use a pinking shears on the curved part of the butt seam.  The notching created by the pinking shears helps the seam to lay flat. 

2.  I'll be honest, for me the super cute contrasting panel was sweary to sew.  There is a tendency for it to pucker at the bottom.  Rae wrote a blog post on how to troubleshoot this issue here.  Even following these instructions, I had to unpick the seam a couple of times with each pair of pants.  The cordoroy puckered less and was easier to work with than the pants I made from quilting cotton.  But it was obviously worth it given I made three pair.   I recommend sewing this seam first with a basting stitch, which is easier to unpick.  (Afterward of course you'd want to sew it again with a regular length stitch.)  It also helped to lay the contrasting bum panel as flat as possible.  I found it worked better to not clip the 1/2" seam allowance near the bottom of the contrasting panel.  It was easier for me to line everything up this way than when I trimmed that portion with a pinking shears.

3.  If your babe is not in cloth diapers you may have to play around with the fit.  I cut the pattern 6-12 mo in width and 12-18 mo in length for Iris, who will be 1 next week (!).   I felt the booty was a little saggy, which I remedied by rolling the elastic over once at the top.  The length, especially on the cuffed pants, was perfect, if almost a little short.  Next time, I'd add more length.

4.  Like many patterns, this one offers recommendations on the length of elastic for the waist.  Personally, I never follow these recs and instead measure my child's waist, pinning the elastic an inch or two less than that measurement and always, always trying it on them once the elastic has been pulled through the casing.  

And that wraps up day two of the kcwc as well as my full disclosure review of the Big Butt Pants pattern.


  1. Perfect! Thanks for the hints and tweaks! We CD and I have a bear of a time finding pants/leggings that will fit her, uh, "fluffy" self ; )
    I'm ordering the pattern in the morning!
    Where are some of your favorite fabric places to shop. I am finding the Hobby Lobby/Joanns route is getting me a lot of fabric that fades quite easily.

  2. i don't own this pattern (and it's not practical for us to cloth diaper for the most part) but thanks for the tips! that point does seem a bit tricky, like practice makes perfect maybe? all of your versions are super cute, that's for sure.

  3. Shannon, you are going to love these pants. Yes! I have had that same problem with the chain department stores. I generally buy my fabric online often at Sew, Mama, Sew or I cannot attest to the quality of all of the fabrics at (they have a ton!) but I generally stick with the names I recognize from the independent fabric shops like Sew, Mama, Sew or Purl Soho.

    The corduroy is 21 Wale Corduroy by Robert Kaufman. It's super soft, vibrant and has held up well when I've used it in the past. The clothes I've made have stayed in fantastic shape being washed and worn a lot and passed down from girl to girl. I've been so happy with it. Definitely worth the extra money.

    Kristin, I had those same thoughts about the BBP but as it turns out they aren't just for cloth diapered babies and toddlers. We stopped using cloth when Iris turned 7 months old when it became impractical for us as well.

  4. Ah, now I see your comments! (Sorry, I'm scarily behind in my Google Reader right now, and trying to catch up!) So yes, the point at the bottom is hard to get PERFECT. Several of my pairs pucker but I'm just living with the pucker, honestly! :-) It does seem like it's easier to get perfect with fabrics that have some natural give/stretch, you can just stretch it as you sew. It's kind of like a set in sleeve in that way.

    I also love this pattern even though my baby is not in cloth diapers. I would like to try to do it with a narrower or tapered leg one of these days, just because I think that would be adorable ...

    1. yes, i'll admit, i'm pretty obsessive on finishing.

      a narrow leg would be cute. someone else suggested elastic at the ankle. i thought that might be adorable as well.


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