Making Men’s Casual Shorts

For Christmas, I gave my boyfriend some shorts!

The striped fabric I found is a type of slightly stretchy poplin. I love the crisp look and feel of the fabric and the stretch is an added bonus.

What will be needed:

  • Sewing machine (B 735)
  • Shorts pattern (see below)
  • Fabric (see pattern for quantity)
  • Corresponding subject
  • Elastic (quantity depending on waist size)
  • Drawstring/cotton ribbon (quantity depends on waist size)
  • Buttonhole foot #3A


I used the free pattern of Darcy boxer shorts. The original pattern has a functional fly and exposed elastic waistband. It is available in a masculine and feminine style.

The previous pairs of shorts I created in my His & Hers Lounge Shorts blog post each had a faux fly and a wrapped elastic waistband. You can learn how I modified the pattern and stitched them in this blog post.

For the casual style shorts I make in this blog post, I add a drawstring, omit the fly completely, and create a wrapped elastic waistband.
I made these changes to the original model:
-Increased the seam allowance from 1 cm to 1.5 cm so that flat folded seams can be made instead of overlocked seams.
-Omitted the fly by using the right front piece twice and excluding the left front piece.
-Addition of double the width of the elastic (for example 2.5 cm x 2 = 5 cm) at the top of the pattern pieces.


I sewed the seams according to my blog post How to Sew Flat Seams

  1. Join the front pieces together along the crotch seam.
  1. Join the back pieces together along the crotch seam.
  1. Join the front piece to the back piece at the side seams.
    Press the seams to the back.
  1. Now join the front piece to the back piece at the crotch.
    Iron the seam towards the Back.
  1. Sew the hem
    Fold the raw edge of the hems up 1cm and iron towards the inside of the shorts.
    Fold the hem 3 cm and iron.
    Secure the hem with a row of stitches.

Recessed elastic waistband and drawstring

Regarding the amount of elastic needed, Darcy boxer shorts pattern the designer says:
“Measure the opening, reduce it by a third, then wrap that length around you before cutting. If you prefer a firmer or looser fit, adjust as necessary. Remember these are boxers, you want them to be comfortable!

For cord length, I would recommend 1.5 x waist measurement. It can always be shortened.

  1. Fold the raw edge of your fabric 1 cm to the wrong side and iron.
    Fold and iron again, across the width of the elastic (2.5 cm).
  1. Determine the location of the buttonholes
    I placed mine about 1.5cm on either side of the seam and just below the fold line.
    Iron a little iron-on on the reverse side to strengthen the fabric.
  1. Measure the width of the cord. This will be the size of your buttonhole
  1. Sew a buttonhole on each side of the center front seam.
    I chose stitch #51 and made the size of the buttonhole the same as the width of the cord.
    Don't forget to select the corresponding buttonhole foot from the menu. Simply tap the icon to open the presser foot menu.
  1. In the pattern it says to join the ends of the elastic by butting the raw edges together and sewing securely in a zigzag pattern over the join. I prefer to layer and secure with a sewn square.
  1. Wrap the elastic.
    Divide the elastic and the top of the shorts into 4 equal parts.
    Match the marks and pin the elastic to the back of the shorts.
    Cover the edge of the Elastic with the 1 cm fold.
    Fold the top of the shorts, wrapping the elastic, then make a straight stitch along the bottom edge to hold the elastic in place.
  1. Attach the cord to a safety pin and pass it through one buttonhole, through the waistband, and through the other buttonhole.
    Cut the raw ends of the cord and knot them.


  • The original pattern includes a seam allowance of 1 cm and a hem allowance of 3 cm.
  • Your choice of fabric and print will affect the style of the shorts.
    A crisp fabric like linen or cotton in a solid color or classic print would make great casual shorts. Something in a softer or drapier fabric would probably work better for loungewear.

I’d love to see what you make, feel free to share with me!


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