Pants fitting isn’t just good luck, it usually takes a muslin (or two) to get what you want.
I used Stretch and Sew 738 as the base pattern for these lounge shorts. I was intrigued by a construction detail. In three of the views, the pants open through one of the pockets. No zippers. No buttons. Just a hook to hold the waistband closed.
I wanted to further simplify things by using a cut-on waistband and incorporating a partial-elastic drawstring as the closure, instead of the hook. That meant I could also skip sewing the darts. The gathering on the drawstring works as shaping, in this case.
The first muslin (which you can see on my Instagram page) fit pretty well in front but didn’t have nearly enough room in the center back seam. So, I added a little more to the crotch curve by tracing it out to two sizes larger on the pattern.
The second muslin (shown above) was more comfortable in the rear, but the center back seam didn’t come up as high as the front seam or side seams. I slashed the pattern at the hip adjustment line and spread it to get the vertical height I needed. I made sure the front waist and back waist were the same width, shortened the pattern to the leg length I wanted, and trued up the inner leg seams. I should have checked the length on the side seams – they ended up being off by about a quarter inch. I flared the legs out, overall, by having the side, front, and back seams fall more-or-less straight down along the straight of grain down from their widest points.
I then made a small style change by lowering the entire waistline (and, as a result, the pocket placements) by about 2 inches, since I don’t like to wear much of anything at my natural waist.
I pretty much followed the pattern instructions for assembly. One thing to watch if you choose to do a cut-on waistband with this pattern is finishing the top on the back piece of the pocket that opens. It’s meant to lay as an underlap, so it needs to be finished. I cut a piece of on-grain fabric and used it as a binding. This method probably created more bulk than would be ideal, but considering that it’s going behind an edge that’s already gathered, I think it looks fine.
I hemmed the shorts using my rolled-hem foot. It was fast and easy, but it could have been tidier. I need more practice using that.