Back to School for Boys: Sturdy Pants and a Zip Hoodie

I went to buy camouflage fabric the other day … but couldn’t find it. Ba dum bum.

Of course, I did find it at Cali Fabrics, and incorporated two different camo fabrics into these sturdy back-to-school basics for boys: a zip-up hoodie and pull-on pants.


The jacket is my Hello Hoodie pattern with the hooded view, contrast side panels and sleeves, and of course, pockets. I used two colors of fleece and lined it with a thermal knit.

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The olive green polar fleece has a light nap on the right side with a textured wrong side. The black polar fleece is slightly thinner than the olive and has a finer texture on the right side. They are both soft and cuddly, 100% poly polar fleece with a bit of stretch.

The liner is a midweight thermal knit in an olive green camo print. It has a bit of 2-way stretch and is a poly/cotton blend. I was concerned that it was little stiff out of the box but the first washing softened it right up! It’s the perfect fabric for a warm hoodie. As the name implies, thermal fabric is made to trap body heat between the textured yarns so is nice and cozy for outerwear and PJs.

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I color-blocked the side panels and sleeves, and added a gray zipper. It’s the zipper I had on hand that was the right size, but let’s pretend I intentionally added it for an edgy pop, OK?
Fleece is so easy to sew, it’s a great fabric even for beginners.  It doesn’t fray, so no seam finishing is needed, it’s forgiving of less-than-straight seams and doesn’t shift when you cut it.  The waffle knit is equally easy to please. No curly edges, no crazy stretching and also no edge-finishing needed, just a nice easy sew that gives you a soft, warm garment.
Special tools/notions for both: ballpoint needle, polyester thread.

The pants are my Potato Chip Pants and Shorts pattern. Like the Potato Chip Skirt, these have a flat front, elastic back, and front pockets. The pants have a back yoke and decorative ‘pocket flaps’ in back.

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I used this amazing cotton/lycra camouflage stretch twill. I can’t say how much I love this fabric, it sewed so easily I could have done it with my eyes closed (though not recommended). Because the fabric had a bit of stretch and I wanted these to be a close fit, I sized my model down a size (also, because skinny kid). Then I added some wide elastic in the hems to give him that ‘joggers’ look he prefers for his pants.

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The twill is midweight and feels so sturdy! These pants are going to last him forever, or until he grows, which will probably be next week.

Just a note about the twill. It is printed on one side only, so if you were making roll-up pants or some construction that would show the reverse side, you’d want to add a facing.

Special tools/notions: Used a 100/16 needle though a 90/14 probably would have been fine as well. I wish I had used a thicker topstitching thread on the pocket details.

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Nothing completes an outfit like bunny ears!

I hope you’ve enjoyed reading along with my adventures in apparel fabric! You can find Part 1 and Part 2 here on the Cali & Co blog.

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Jen’s line of PDF sewing patterns for children is at www.tiedyedivapatterns.com and she blogs here.

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