I sewed the Grace Hipster Panties pattern since I’m participating in #BRAugust2017 and need to make some panties to match all the fabulous bras I’ve been sewing! I have tried several pantie patterns over the past year, but my go-to favorite is the Grace Hipster Pattern from Ohhh LuLu. Since this is an interesting pattern, combining woven & stretch fabrics, I put this tutorial together as a quick reference.
Pattern & Fabric
What I love the most about this pattern is the clever combination of woven & stretch fabrics. Not only does this help me use my stash better, but also I adore the feel of the more structured woven panel in the front and back. These woven pieces are cut on the bias to allow for needed stretch- genius! I chose a fun stretch Liberty of London fabric that I picked up on a recent trip to The Fabric Store (you can read more about that trip here). Paired with this print fabric is standard lingerie power mesh- I used this combination on a bra recently and made this pair of Grace Hipster Panties to match.
After rotary cutting out the pieces, I make sure I’m sewing with a 1/2″ seam [Note-this pattern calls for 1/2″, but other lingerie patterns can use anywhere from 1/4-3/4″ seam allowances so always confirm this before sewing]. The first seams to construct are the longitudinal ones- sewing the front & back woven panels to the side pieces. I chose the stretch zig-zag stitch on my machine and then ran them through the serger for a more finished look. If you’ve read any of my previous posts, you’ll see that I haven’t used a serger for most of my bra projects utilizing a 1/4 seam allowance; however, for these panties I do prefer the look of the serged edge.
The next step of the Grace Hipster Panties pattern is the crotch seam, which is the only tricky part to pantie sewing. Once you make a few pairs, you will have this down. Since the crotch lining piece serves two functions- hygiene and covering the crotch seam-it’s important to get it right. The first thing I do is serge the front edge of the lining- the front edge is the straight side, and it will be visible when finished, so a finished edge is necessary. Next, you will baste the crotch seam together and give it a press. Then, you position the right side of the crotch lining to the wrong side of the crotch seam, making sure that you are sewing on the back side. To visualize this, I make a sandwich out of the seam with the wrong side of the crotch lining facing up (see photo below). After seaming this curved seam, you will need to press and grade/notch it. And finally, you are ready to fold the crotch lining forward and into place.
I have found two different ways to finish the leg openings of these panties. The first way is consistent with the pattern instructions- simply finish the raw edge leg opening with a serger and then turn under and top stitch with a twin needle. Another method I have tried is to use elastic, much like you will do for the waistband. I like both of these methods and use them interchangeably, depending on fabric and style choice. Either method will create a finished look on the edges and secure the crotch lining nicely.
The waist elastic comes next and is installed in a standard 2-step lingerie style. The elastic is pinned and sewed to the waist opening- raw edges together with the plush side up and the decorative side to the left. I sew the first pass on the right side and use a standard zig-zag stitch (1.5 long x 3.5 wide). I try to keep the stitches as close to the decorative edge without going over it, so it looks nice when finished. Then, the elastic is turned and sewn down with a 3 step zig-zag (1.1 long x 5.0 wide), this time stitching on the wrong side. The result is attractive and will hold up well.
Sewing a pair of Grace Hipster Panties is a worthwhile investment into your me-made lingerie wardrobe. If you are new to lingerie sewing, like I was, this is a great pattern to give several basic lingerie sewing techniques a try. And then you can pair it with your favorite bra pattern for a matched set!