A while ago I cleaned out my underwear drawer. Yes, this is pertinent information. Bear with me.

I restocked with regular old cotton undies and called it a day, because I’m too cheap to pay big bucks for underwear. While mass-produced clothing isn’t exactly known for standing the test of time, I figured these would last awhile, at any rate.

One pair of my brand-spanky-new undies went through the wash twice, and most of the elastic came out after the second washing. It’s such fun untangling tiny strands of elastic from the rest of your laundry isn’t it? Let me just say, Fruit of the Loom, that you can go suck a bag of  #*$&^. Hell hath no fury like a woman whose underwear have fallen apart. Hell hath no fury, I say!

So what’s a frugal girl to do? Sew your own damn underwear!

The pros of sewing my own underwear are:
1.) Using a nice sturdy cotton fabric that won’t fall apart in a few months.
2.) Using thick pieces of 1/4 inch elastic that won’t come out of the seams in a few days, Fruit of the Loom!
3.) Using thick, sturdy seams and reinforced stitching so they can withstand repeated washings.

The cons:
1.) It’s weird to sew your own underwear.

The pros totally outweigh the cons in this scenario, so onward!

I found a free pattern from Colette Patterns, called the Madeleine Mini Bloomers. Yes, bloomers. Word.

First, I had to find my sewing machine. Help.

Oh hey, there it is!

Much better. After that I printed out the pattern, all 22 pages of it. If you have an inkjet printer, my sincerest apologies go out to you. But you can see the finished product in the photo below – nice and cute little bloomers.

This is the first pair I made, following the pattern directions (almost) exactly. 

This is the second pair, in which I took a few detours to save time and my sanity.

Those look huge, don’t they!? Like Paul Bunyan’s mother’s underwear.

All in all, this was a very easy sewing project. It took me about an hour to make one pair. The main things I want to point out are:

– They are HUGE before you insert the elastic into the waist. Fair warning. Bloomers are, by definition, voluminous, but holy wow. Don’t panic.
– The pattern calls for several pieces of elastic to be sewn into the waistband. I just used one piece.
– I found inserting ribbons into each leg to be rather more time consuming than necessary. And, it involves making buttonholes, which are the bane of my existence. (1st photo.) For the second pair, I used elastic in the legs as well as the waist, and it saved a considerable amount of time.
– Overall, I prefer wearing the pair with elastic sewn into the legs. The elastic keeps the legs from riding up, so they’re actually quite comfortable to wear with jeans or a skirt. The pair with ribbons in the legs bunches/rides up and can be uncomfortable under jeans. They are lovely to wear as pajamas, however.

In case you missed it above, here’s another link to the pattern: Madeleine Mini Bloomers

Sew on!