A Tale Of Two Shorts


It was the best of times.  It was the worst of times.

But let's start with the best because that's much more fun.   Allow me to introduce my latest pair of City Gym Shorts - with gold bias binding nonetheless!  Now if I were a better blogger this is where I would tell you where exactly I got the inspiration for these shorts, because I'm definitely not the first person to use metallic trim on these shorts. The truth is though, that I have no idea where I first saw this because while I was immediately drawn to the idea I knew that there was no way that I was ever going to get around to making my own metallic bias tape so I didn't even bookmark the inspiration.  Fast forward a week or two and what do I find at Joann Fabrics?  Pre-made metallic bias tape.  Boo-yah!

Actually, double boo-yah because it turned out that I had just enough plain black cotton fabric in my stash that was leftover from some long-forgotten project.  And with that combo these little shorts were born.  And I just have to say - holy cow, are these shorts quick to sew up when you use store bought bias tape.  Lightening fast, people!

So fast that I had time to make a whole another pair of shorts - only this time for the little one.  I dug through the stash to find some coordinating fabric and came up with this mermaid fabric by Heather Ross and some leftover orange quilting cotton.  I really love these little shorts too but the recipient is less enthusiastic about them.  When I tried to try them on her to check the length of the elastic, she started yelling "Bad shorts!  Bad shorts!" and her opinion of them still hasn't changed.   I'm choosing to believe that she's displeased with them out of a sense of solidarity with the mermaids - whose heads I accidentally cut off because I miss calculated the seam allowance of the waistband.  Oops.

On the upside, I'm super-smart and made C's shorts in a size three so there's the possibility that they may still fit her next year.  Here's to hoping that she makes peace with decapitated mermaids in the coming year.

Also on a positive note, after making three pairs of these shorts I've come to the conclusion that the waistband is just a tad bit too long.  I struggled like hell to get the second one in just right (just like the first one), so on the third pair I cut the waistband a tiny bit smaller (maybe like 1/2 an inch) and it went in perfectly.  And another tip - although this one is far from mind-blowing - I've been sewing a little X on the backside of the shorts to indicate which side is the back.  Usually I do this with a little bit of ribbon but the way that this waistband is sewn on makes it so that step requires much more forethought than I'm capable of so I went with this sporty little method instead.  Problem solved.


  1. WHAT?? they make metallic bias tape??? well that's pretty much brilliant. those shorts are super cute!!

  2. ROFL at the bad shorts, guess you can't win 'em all! If only she knew how rare those mermaids were...

  3. OMG! "Bad shorts, bad shorts!"

    Unfortunately, Maggie reacts that way about pretty much 85% of her wardrobe, both store bought and handmade. I'm just going to have to start sewing more for myself, because my children are decidedly ungrateful.

    The gold lame bias tape is GENIUS. Who knew such a product exists? Too cool. I can see there would be a strong niche market for it.

  4. And the fabric combo for your own shorts will be?? Love these, but poor rejected headless mermaids :(

  5. I love that gold bias binding! I saw it/bought it at Hobby Lobby last year and could not believe how awesome it is!

    "Bad shorts!" oh boy - I wonder what she was thinking in particular? Kids are so funny, aren't they? Well I love them and I hoping with you that she comes around. When I first made the Caroline Party Dress Iris did not want to wear it the first few times and now it's a fav. :)

  6. oh lordy these are cute. i bought some gold bias at joann after seeing this post! must copy!


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