A Little Help? (A Sewing Conundrum & Prayer Request)

I’ve had a slow start to sewing this year. Finally, I got started on a pair of pants I’ve been wanting to make for a couple of months.

I really like this detail on a pair of Eli’s pants. For want of a better term I’ll call it a knee pleat. (Please, if you know a better technical term, educate me.) The color in this photo isn’t great, but the pants are a color green that just doesn’t match much of his wardrobe so they haven’t seen much wear. He doesn’t really need more pants right now but my friend’s son Alan, who is about the same age, does. Yay! An excuse for me to try to make a pair of pants with a “knee pleat.”

I traced a pair of Eli’s pants that are currently a good fit to make a new pattern. Do you see what I forgot? Yep. There is an appalling lack of seam allowances. I ‘m not concerned with the the top or the bottom of the pants as I’ll be adding other fabrics there (and I did remember to add a little extra length), but the seams around the seat and crotch and down the legs… Uh-oh.

Of course I didn’t notice until I had it pretty much sewn up. Little Alan is the same height as Eli but several pounds lighter. Even so, these certainly don’t look like they will accommodate a little guy with a diaper, even if he is a string bean.

Here’s the thing. I’m trying to decide if the pants are salvageable. I was pretty excited about the pocket on the side of one pant leg.

And of course the “knee pleat.”

Please excuse the tailor's pencil lines. These haven't been washed yet.

Also, the fabric on the bottom is made to be worn as a cuff or down when Alan gets taller. It’s the first time I’ve done that as well.

So, I’m wondering if maybe putting in a butt-wedge like I put in Eli’s Fluffy-bottom Sweater Pants would save these pants. (I think the skinnier legs would still work for Alan.)

Of course with the denim material being much more uniform it would be less noticeable, Maybe I could add a back pocket to further disguise it, but would it look too “baby-ish” for toddler jeans? Should I just salvage the pocket and start anew?

I’d really appreciate any feedback on this that I can get!

I won’t be able to sew much this coming week as I have doctor’s appointments for Eli everyday but Wednesday. That gives me time to step back and think this through and gather your nuggets of sewing wisdom before I blunder ahead.

And for those of you out there who pray, I’d really appreciate any prayers you might have for Eli on Thursday. We have to take him in for a swallow study. Eli chokes fairly often, even on his own saliva, and it’s possible his tongue not working quite right could be a part of the speech delay he has. It seems he chews up and spits out more food than he swallows a lot of the time.

Between getting him up a couple of hours earlier than usual (lately he won’t sleep much before 11:30 p.m.), not feeding him or giving him anything to drink, getting him to agree to swallow the barium and then either having him brave the x-ray alone, or convincing the hospital staff to allow me to stay with him during the actual x-rays…. Then continuing to not allow him to eat, drink, or nurse so they can do more x-rays a while later to see the state of his small intestine… Let’s just say we are really going to need some Divine intervention to get him to co-operate through all of this. And of course, co-operation aside, I’d like it to be as un-traumatic for him as possible as well.

Thank you for reading, and for any support, sewing or prayer, you might be willing to lend!


Here’s where I’m linking up.


Simply DesigningWhipperberry,  Happy Hour Projectskojodesigns,

Joyful StamperMaking Lemonade BlogThirty Handmade Days,

Release Me CreationsNaptime CraftersRomantic HomeFinding Fabulous,

Shabby NestChic on a Shoestring DecoratingFrench Country Cottage,

The Charm of HomeThe Grant LifeAt the Picket FenceFingerprints on the Fridge,

Stuff and NonsenseOne Art Mama2805


The Gingerbread BlogToo Much Time On My Hands,

Six Sisters StuffSerenity YouBe Different Act Normal


LambAround,  Homemaker on a Dime,  I {heart} Naptime,  Flamingo Toes,

Petite HermineMy 1929 Charmer Blog


{aka}/ designGet Outta My Head PleaseMad in Crafts, Skip to My Lou,

The Gunny SackSew Can Do, Singing Three Little BirdsEtcetorizeDittle Dattle,

C.R.A.F.T.,  diy home sweet homeCraft-O Maniac, Sew Chatty, Artful Rising,

Sarahndipities Just Winging ItEverything Under the Moon



  1. Ann said,

    January 15, 2012 at 3:20 am

    Praying for you!

  2. ReStitch Me said,

    January 15, 2012 at 5:32 am

    My thoughts and prayers will be with you and little Eli! I hope that the doctors will be able to figure out how they can help him, so life will be easier!

    I do love the airplane pocket–racking my brains on a ‘fix’ for your problem, but none coming to mind. The pants are really cute though!

    • January 17, 2012 at 7:20 pm

      Thanks a lot for your prayers! I’ll do an update when the dust settles a bit.

  3. January 15, 2012 at 6:01 am

    Prayers are on the way!

    As for the jeans, maybe you could add a butt-wedge that corresponds with the pocket? Something out of the same fabric as the pocket, or the same fabric as the airplane?

    • January 17, 2012 at 7:19 pm

      Thank for praying Janie! I went with the bum wedge, but after talking to Alan’s mom decided to stay with the same denim fabric. I do like a contrasting bottom panel on little one’s pants though.

  4. jensellers said,

    January 15, 2012 at 6:49 am

    We will keep a candle lit. May the best possible outcome prevail. Sending love to the whole family.

  5. Courtney S. said,

    January 15, 2012 at 7:25 am

    Tyler had the same problem sis, let’s just hope that it is as easily fixed as it was with Tyler. A pill a day helped a lot till he developed the bad texture issues he still has today. It limits his food intake, but he is seemingly healthy and happy. I don’t pray, but you are in our thoughts and I hope my favorite nephew makes it through this with as little upset as possible. We love you ELI!!!!!!

    • January 17, 2012 at 7:16 pm

      Tyler does look healthy in photos. I didn’t know he ate so little until I read your latest blog post. Thank you so much for your concern for Eli!

  6. January 15, 2012 at 3:19 pm

    Well, I certainly can’t help on the sewing issue, considering that I swore off sewing forever after a painful junior high home ec semester.

    But the prayers – definitely!! Doctor’s appointments are hard enough without it being a totally new experience with tests and such happening. I’m so sorry!

    • January 17, 2012 at 6:01 pm

      Thanks Rachel! It really is helping to calm me down knowing that people are praying, and if I’m calm he’ll do much better!

  7. January 16, 2012 at 8:58 am

    I don’t have any sewing suggestions but those knee pleats look pretty awesome! Sending positive thoughts your way all week long~ Thanks for linking up at Etcetorize.

  8. January 16, 2012 at 1:18 pm

    sorry, I can’t be much help with the sewing question. The pants look great to me.
    so sorry about Eli! I will pray for him.

  9. Ajaire said,

    January 16, 2012 at 4:04 pm

    I do love the knee pleat. It came out great. What a bummer about the seams. Is there any way to sew close to the edge to give as much room as possible? Or are the seams serged so that won’t work? I think a crotch diamond thing would help. even a small one should make a big enough difference to allow for diaper bum. As long as you can get the extra height from the fabric you plan for the top. Keep us posted on how it turns out.

    • January 17, 2012 at 6:00 pm

      I really like the diamond crotch idea. It didn’t work for this but I wqnt to experiment with it soon! I had never heard of it before (I’m very new to anything other than quilting.) It seems like such a great idea for active, diapered toddler clothing.

  10. January 17, 2012 at 11:53 am

    Wish I could help, but I’m a novice sewer! Praying for Eli…. my daughter had severe feeding issues, if I can help in any way please let me know.

    • January 17, 2012 at 5:57 pm

      Thank you so much! Right now I’m not even sure what to ask, but with info from the swallow study and help from OT I hope we get a course of action. I will keep your offer in mind along the way. I really appreciate your offer!

  11. January 17, 2012 at 4:24 pm

    […] Comments « A Little Help? (A Sewing Conundrum & Prayer Request) […]

  12. Maysem said,

    January 17, 2012 at 6:53 pm

    Hi Karen. I will be sure to make a special prayer for Eli:) Keep us posted. All the best!

  13. Inder said,

    January 17, 2012 at 8:55 pm

    Sounds like you sorted out the pants issue (I would have voted for a matching denim butt-gusset/wedge myself, so well done!). I’m thinking good thoughts for Eli (and for you!) for this testing, which sounds like quite a trial! I hope it’s not as bad as you fear and you make it through relatively unscathed. And I hope it leads to answers for you and your family. Definitely keep us posted!

  14. Courtney said,

    January 18, 2012 at 11:14 am

    Hope everything went well with your little guy. Thank you for sharing at Feathered Nest Friday!

  15. Kelley said,

    January 18, 2012 at 8:39 pm

    I cant help you with the sewing.. at all. Haha. But I can pray for your little guy. I hope everything turns out ok!

    Im sorry Im late commenting.. I signed up for email updates but they dont seem to work. Ill just have to check back more frequently!

    And thank you for linking up to my Friday link party.. hope to see you there again!

    • January 18, 2012 at 9:43 pm

      Thanks so much for the prayers, Kelley! I’m sorry the email thing doesn’t seem to be working right. thank you for bringing it to my attention, and for taking the time to check back.

  16. Sherry said,

    January 19, 2012 at 7:54 am

    Much hugs and prayers for Eli! Thank you for joining me at Home Sweet Home!

  17. January 20, 2012 at 11:19 am

    I hope everything went well yesterday!

    • January 20, 2012 at 1:36 pm

      Thanks, they let us stay with him during the x-rays. It was difficult, but it is now behind us! The results were good… nothing wrong with his esophagus. 🙂 I posted an update on it all last night.

  18. Natasha said,

    January 20, 2012 at 2:59 pm

    my thoughts are with you and your little boy.
    my 1 year old broke his leg just two weeks ago and it was horrible when he had to have the x-rays, so know how you feel. xx

    Thanks for linking up to Serenity Saturday
    Hope to see you there again tomorrow

    Natasha xx

    • January 20, 2012 at 3:08 pm

      Oh, I’m so sorry about your baby’s broken leg!!! That had to be so difficult for all of you! I’ve not had a lot of time for crafty endeavors this past week so I don’t have anything to link up just now, but I’ll be back to your party soon! Thanks for hosting!

  19. January 25, 2012 at 3:40 pm

    […] pants with a knee pleat detail copied from one of Eli’s out-grown jeans. Unfortunately I forgot to add seam allowances when I traced an existing pair of his pants for the patter. In the end the pants were salvageable, […]

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