Oooh la la: French Knickers Tutorial

french knickers tutorial and pattern little button diaries

I just wanted to share my super easy peasy french knickers pattern with you. Don’t worry, I haven’t put any pictures of me in my pants up. No one wants to see that.

I’ve made a few pairs of these in the past, tried out a few different patterns that I bought and thought I’d tweak my favourites to make my own French Knickers Pattern for you to print out too. Don’t be put off by the fact that the pattern looks more like an elephant’s head than knickers, it’s a lot easier than it looks and will quickly all come together. Honest!

You will need:

  • 1m light cotton fabric. Or silk if you dare (I didn’t dare)
  • 1m 5mm flat elastic
  • 1m Co-ordinating bias binding

This pattern is a UK size 10 – to increase or decrease the size, for each dress size add or remove 1cm to the pattern where indicated.

Here’s how to make:

1. Fold the fabric in half and cut 2 of each template. You will have four pieces, each pair mirroring one another. This is when it really doesn’t look like a pair of pants. Bear with…

french knickers tutorial and pattern little button diaries 1

2. Take the two back pieces and pin them together along the crotch, which is the side with the long narrow bit (like an elephants nose?!). Sew together with a 1cm allowance. Repeat for the front pieces. When you open them up now it should look less elephant and more knickers. Yes? Ok Good. It might also look bigger than it should – that’s ok too. Place the two pieces right sides together and sew the crotch together with a 1cm allowance. Press out the seams.

french knickers tutorial and pattern little button diaries 2 french knickers tutorial and pattern little button diaries 3

3. Pin and sew together the two side seams, right sides together, with a 1cm allowance.  These won’t naturally match up so you will need to pull the fabric and pin carefully into place.

french knickers tutorial and pattern little button diaries 4

4. Add the matching bias binding onto the raw edge of each leg opening. If you need some guidance for how to attach binding head over to YouTube – there are tons of tutorials on there that are really helpful, like this one.

french knickers tutorial and pattern little button diaries 6 french knickers tutorial and pattern little button diaries 5

5. For the crotch, cut a small diamond shape from the fabric measuring roughly 10cm x 5cm. Pin it inside the pants in the middle of the crotch, right side up. Use zig zag stitch to sew over the raw edge of the diamond.

french knickers tutorial and pattern little button diaries 10 french knickers tutorial and pattern little button diaries 11

For the waistband, fold the fabric in by 1cm and sew with a straight stitch. Take the elastic and wrap it around your hips so that it sits at a comfortable stretch. Add 2cm to this (for overlap) and cut to size. Fold the elastic in half and in half again, marking each quarter with a pen. Pin each end of the elastic, overlapping by 2cm, into the centre back of the pants, on top of the folded over fabric. Then pin each quarter mark onto each seam (sides and front.

french knickers tutorial and pattern little button diaries 7 french knickers tutorial and pattern little button diaries 8

Start from the back seam and sew over the pin with a zigzag stitch. Now pick up the fabric at the first side seam and pull it towards you so that the elastic is taut. Sew over the elastic close to the folded edge of the fabric. Continue all the way round. Fold the fabric and elastic in 1cm and sew just below the elastic with a straight stitch. Pull the fabric taut as before.

french knickers tutorial and pattern little button diaries 14

Hoorah! Hooray! Vous êtes fini! And just in time for Le Saint Valentin.

If you try this pattern out I’d love to see your finished product, please share the love :-)

Tia x

french knickers tutorial and pattern little button diaries 18 french knickers tutorial and pattern little button diaries 17