Tips for the Perfect Elastic Waistband

I don't only love but I adoooore an elasticated waistband. They are so comfy when used on skirts and trousers and so easy and quick to sew!

You can find elastic waistbands on my Cherry Culottes and Shorts pattern, making them the perfect pair of trousers to make if you are a beginner sewist and a piece of cake if you are an experienced maker :)


One of our lovely customers Bonnie in her Summery Cherry Culottes

Now on this post, I will share with you a few tips and tricks to get the perfect waistband when using elastic to finish it off and without using an extra piece for the waistband. Let's go!

Do's and don'ts with elasticated waistbands

Steps to sew a waistband with a tunnel for the elastic (Cherry style)

1. Fold the top raw edge of your culottes / shorts wrong sides together along the waist by around 3cm (make sure your elastic can go through) and press. Pin in place and edge-stitch close to the raw edge leaving a gap of around 5cm unstitched to pass your elastic through the casing.

NOTE: You can finish the raw edge of the waist with your overlocker or with a zigzag stitch before creating the tunnel or fold the waist twice to enclose the raw edge.

2. Take your elastic and with a safety pin attached to one end, start passing it through the gap you made in the previous step all along the casing and finishing at the same point where you started.

3. Now, securing both ends of the elastic with the same safety pin, try on your culottes or shorts, distributing the elastic evenly along the tunnel. Check the fit considering they should hang comfortably along your hips or lower waist without being too tight or too loose.

4. When you are happy with the fit, take them off and stitch both ends of the elastic together using a zigzag stitch and sewing forwards and backwards a few times to secure the elastic in place. Make sure that both ends of the elastic lay flat one of top of the other to avoid a bulky seam.

5. Sew the gap closed sewing again along the line you stitched on step 1 to create the casing.

NOTE: If your waistband is wide enough, you can also sew a few paralel lines of stitches on top of the elastic to create a very professional and neat effect.

Tips to get the perfect waistband

  • Double check that your elastic fits comfortably along the casing of the waistband (not too wide) or that it is not too narrow for the width of your casing so it doesn't get twisted inside or create funny wrinkles in the waist.

  • Make sure you hold the safety pin tight along the waist when pulling the elastic through, as it tends to get lost in there ;) Do this part slowly holding the other end of the elastic in case you pull too hard and it goes inside the tunnel as well (so you have to start over again!).

  • And last, when you finish your waistband, stitch-in-the-ditch vertically along both side waistband seams, catching the elastic to prevent it from twisting when wearing it (which is increadibly annoying!).

Keep following for more and leave a comment :)

Happy sewing!


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