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L&P 101: Gym Shorts Pattern for 18 Inch Dolls such as American Girl — workout, running, dance or pajama bottoms for girl and boy dolls



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  • Digital file type(s): 1 PDF

NOTE: This listing is for the 18 INCH DOLL SIZE ONLY.

This pattern is also available as a 3-for-the-price-of-2 BUNDLE, which includes 18 inch, 16 inch and 14 1/2 inch doll sizes, at: https://www.etsy.com/listing/641891043/101-multi-size-gym-shorts-for-18-inch-16


Introducing PATTERN 101: GYM SHORTS FOR 18 INCH DOLLS, the FIRST pattern in our new "Pearls" by Lee & Pearl™ line.

Pearls are patterns for people who want to learn new sewing skills — just one at a time, on a limited project, and with a well-designed reward after each lesson.

Each Pearl will feature ONE item, with a limited number of steps, detailed material and tool descriptions, and only one or two techniques that might be unfamiliar to beginner sewers. Here's where you'll learn those new techniques — because you are ready to take your skills to the next level. You just don't want to do it all at once.

Of course, you don't have to be a beginner or sewing student to enjoy our Pearls. As time- and budget-friendly patterns for doll wardrobe basics, we know that they will be especially welcome for busy parents and craft fair sellers.

Got an hour to spare? Make yourself a perfect Pearl!



These relaxed fit, unisex gym shorts are easy-to-make and easy-to-wear. They'll slip right on your doll — thanks to the elastic waist — and stay in place through all kinds of active play. Try them as casual summer shorts, workout or dance practice shorts, running shorts, or even pajama bottom shorts!

In this pattern, you will learn how to sew comfortably on mildly stretchy cotton jersey material — and you'll learn the same elastic waistband insertion technique that the sportswear and activewear pros use.

We'll walk you through every step, help you with material selection, introduce you to necessary tools, and even suggest a few optional items that can make your sewing experience easier — and your results more professional.

As always, Lee & Pearl's photo-illustrated directions and computer-drafted, guaranteed-to-fit-together pattern pieces make every step as easy as possible.

You do not need a serger to complete this pattern. Directions are included for standard home sewing machines with straight stitch and zig zag stitch capability.

These patterns were developed to fit 18" Mattel-era American Girl® dolls. They will fit differently on different dolls.



1/6 yard soft knit fabric (6" high x 22" long piece)

1/3 yard 1/4" knit elastic (do not use braided elastic)

Matching thread

NOTE: This garment is easiest to make using a fairly stable, NON SPANDEX knit, such as cotton or cotton/poly jersey or brushed jersey.

You can also cut the pieces from a store-bought or repurposed human-size T-shirt, and we've included optional directions for using existing T-shirt hems.


Along with their GYM SHORTS, the dolls in our photos are wearing outfits that include items from L&P Pattern 1001: UNISEX T-SHIRTS (https://www.etsy.com/listing/621111186/lp-1001-unisex-t-shirts-pattern-for-18), L&P Pattern 1051: Ballet Basics LEOTARD, Unitard and One-Piece Swimsuit (https://www.etsy.com/listing/221288152/lp-1051-ballet-basics-leotard-unitard), L&P Pattern 1075: BALLET SLIPPERS (https://www.etsy.com/listing/600591709/lp-1075-ballet-slippers-pattern-for-18) and L&P Pattern 1008: Classic BALL CAP & Big Fat Trucker Hat (https://www.etsy.com/listing/184380608/lp-pattern-1008-classic-ball-cap-and-big).


Sign up for our mailing list at www.leeandpearl.com, and you'll receive our newsletter full of behind-the-scenes news, tutorials, crafts and printables. PLUS, you'll get the link for our annual members-only FREE PATTERN.

Don't miss out on this pattern — join our mailing list today at www.leeandpearl.com!

Join the Lee & Pearl™ community: like us on Facebook (Lee & Pearl), follow us on Instagram (#leeandpearl), share us on Pinterest (www.pinterest.com/leeandpearl) and watch us on YouTube (https://www.youtube.com/c/leeandpearl).


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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2,678 reviews

5 out of 5 stars

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sarah hendricks May 15, 2020

5 out of 5 stars

Cute pattern. I have made at least 5 pairs of shorts using this pattern. It fits nicely and the instructions were very easy to follow. Thanks again for a great pattern, Lea and Pearl!

Purchased item:

Judy Hart Oct 11, 2018

5 out of 5 stars

Love this simple style. Will probably make them in lots of colors

Purchased item:

Judy Sanders Mar 12, 2020

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