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L&P 1004: "Boy Style" Pants and Cargo Shorts Pattern for 18 inch dolls such as American Girl — unisex doll pattern + perfect fit waistband



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Use Lee & Pearl™ Sewing Pattern 1004 to make "boy style" trouser pants, like the terrifically realistic chinos we've shown on our 18" doll model Jack, as well as knee-length cargo shorts with either campground-appropriate tailored pockets and flaps, or beachy-casual drawstring pockets.

What is a "boy style" pant? In the real world, boys have longer waists on average than girls. One of the best ways to trick the eye and turn a "female" doll into a "male" doll – aside from cutting her hair or swapping her wig, of course – is to lower the position of the doll's apparent waist. This is the reason why the patterns in this package are designed to fit with the waist slightly lower than a Mattel-era American Girl® doll's natural waist.

But don't worry, though our male doll model Jack looks appropriately boyish, these pants look great on girl dolls as well – just as casual boyfriend trousers look great on real-world girls. The waist line is only slightly dropped, and by no means a low-rider.

Both the pants and cargo shorts are designed with Lee & Pearl's famous "no crack back" fit, featuring a curved waist that fits snugly around a doll's curves while they stand — and while they sit — without any bulky elastic.

The pants (and the shorts made without pockets) are an EASY level pattern, rated for beginners; the cargo shorts are an INTERMEDIATE pattern, rated for more experienced sewers – though no individual step in the construction of the pockets is difficult and beyond the skills of even a beginner. But there are a lot of steps and they need to be followed carefully. Anyone who does follow those steps, however, will emerge with a detailed knowledge of how to make real-world, functional cargo pockets – a knowledge which can be used to add cargo pockets to lots of other patterns! You do not need a serger to complete this pattern.

With all Lee & Pearl™ patterns your packet includes professionally drafted and fully marked pattern pieces, as well as step-by-step, PHOTO ILLUSTRATED instructions.


BOY STYLE PANTS: trouser-cut pants with front fly closure, hip pockets, waist facing (no waistband) and optional belt loops.

1/3 yard woven fabric
Optional smooth fabric for waist facing and hip pocket lining
Hook-and-loop fastener (such as Velcro™)
Optional doll-size button
Matching thread

CARGO SHORTS: knee-length shorts with front fly closure, hip pockets, waist facing (no waistband) and optional belt loops.

1/4 yard of woven fabric
Optional smooth fabric for waist facing and hip pocket lining
Hook-and-loop fastener (such as Velcro™)
Optional doll-size button
Matching thread

for DRAWSTRING POCKET option, add:
1 yard narrow cord for drawstrings
4 – 1/8" eyelets or grommets and eyelet/grommet setting tool (you can find these in the scrapbooking section of many local craft stores)

for TAILORED POCKET & FLAP option, add:
Optional 2 doll-size buttons


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We made the T-shirts shown on our girls — and boy! — using Pattern #1001: Unisex T-Shirts for 18" Dolls – https://www.etsy.com/listing/156525451/lp-pattern-1001-unisex-t-shirts-for-18?ref=shop_home_active_8

To see our other patterns, visit the PATTERNS section of our Etsy store at https://www.etsy.com/shop/leeandpearl?section_id=15862176&ref=shopsection_leftnav_1

To see our selection of Fabric & Trim Kits, visit the FABRIC & TRIM KITS section of our Etsy store at https://www.etsy.com/shop/leeandpearl?section_id=15860795&ref=shopsection_leftnav_2


This pattern will be delivered as an instant download. After purchasing, you will receive a link to a PDF copy of the file. No paper copy will be mailed.

This pattern may be printed solely by the original purchaser. It may not be duplicated, redistributed, posted or resold without prior authorization from Lee & Pearl™. If you use this pattern to make items to sell yourself, we ask that you give Lee & Pearl™ design credit in the description of those items. Thank you!

Lee & Pearl™ is not affiliated with Mattel, American Girl® or any other company.

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2,838 reviews

5 out of 5 stars

Buyers are raving!

Multiple people gave 5-star reviews to this shop in the past 7 days.

5 out of 5 stars

Cute shorts! I love the details of the cargo style … instructions are clear and well written, although definitely more of an intermediate level pattern. The pants sit a little lower than most, and I did feel better making a belt to go with them. While I made these for my boy doll, who is a little chunkier than my girl dolls, they did fit my girl doll about the same. I’ll be trying these again in the long pants version, with some heavier fabric.

Lisa Abney Dec 27, 2021

3 out of 5 stars

I was excited to try this pattern but wasn't really all that excited about the finished product. I know they are low riders but when I say my doll down they didn't stay on her bottom! I also thought the "waist" was too big--I ended up putting in a bit of elastic in back just to keep them on.

Jaci Gasior May 13, 2014

5 out of 5 stars

This is an easy pattern to sew and it fits my American Girl doll perfectly. I have bought so many clothing patterns from other vendors only to have to add more than an inch to the pattern so it will go around my doll. I will buy more of L&P patterns. They are stylish and the fit is perfect!!

gretchenklink1 Oct 30, 2018

5 out of 5 stars

incredible pattern. looks so good, but is quite easy!! love it!

Mary Jo Oct 21, 2013

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