Reversible Mesh Shorts tutorial


Oo-la-la, look at those legs! This is the boys’ attempt to show the reversibility of the shorts, and I’m not sure if that is what this photo is showing… Today I’ve got another free pattern to share! This one is a reversible mesh shorts tutorial and free pattern in size 2-10.   I made up two of these, one is blue/gray and the other is gray/green with a stripe.

I’ve used the same pattern as the Mesh Pants I made last fall, but I shortened it so you can use it for these shorts. The Pattern in these photos is a hand drafted pattern, so it looks different than the printed one. Be sure to print the pattern at 100%! Grab the Pattern HERE.

reversible shorts

It’s a wonder I ever get decent photos with these two as models, but we certainly have fun. They have also worn these shorts all summer long and they are holding up great to the wear and tear of a fun summer. {knees and elbows of boys not doing so well! Ha!}




Ok, let’s get sewing! You will need approx. 1 yard of fabric for each pair of shorts. My mesh was VERY wide…so it might take more or less… You will also need 1″ elastic. I’m sharing a free pattern size 2-10 that works great for these shorts. You can download the pattern here: Free Mesh Shorts Pattern

Cut out your pattern pieces. You want to cut out one color of fabric as directed by you pattern and the other color 1″ shorter.


If you want to add a stripe on the side, cut 1″ off from both the front and back pattern cut outs. Cut a piece of coordinating color 2 1/2 inches wide x the length of your shorts.

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Sew this color to one front and one back piece to get this as the side.

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Sew the shorter color only on sides and inseam {left} Sew the taller color as you would regular shorts. Front seam, back seam, inseam, side seams.


I’m going to refer to the pieces by the color in the photo, instead of inside/outside,etc…. Place the blue shorts {in two pieces} inside the gray with right sides together and matching side and inseams. Check that the legs and the same length from middle seam to hem. Pin and sew hem.


Now you should be able to pull the blue short pieces out like this.

reversable shorts 5

Fold the blue shorts up, the hem is not finished. You should have an open front/back seam…{arrow}

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Fold shorts so that you can sew up the blue shorts front/back seam. I had to sew from top to inseam, then turn to otherside and sew again. It’s easier than trying to sew all in one go.

reversable shorts6

Now smooth everything out and turn right sides facing you. It should look something like this… Grey fabric is taller. {inside shorts should be taller!}

reversable shorts 7

I made TWO PAIRS and forgot to take photos of these next steps.. please forgive my terrible artwork. Measure your elastic and sew the length needed into a circle. Match the seam with the back seam on the outside/blue fabric. Place elastic on top of right side of shorts, overlap a bit and sew with zig zag to attach elastic to shorts.

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Now fold the elastic to inside of shorts. Stretch and pin as you go.

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Finally, fold the inside shorts {gray} over the elastic and over the outside {blue} shorts. The taller shorts should cover the elastic.

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 Sew around at the base of the elastic to secure all layers together. I left the mesh edge raw {green here} I really love the contrasting waistband and stripes on the side.

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Whew! Are you still with me? Please let me know if you have questions! I had better luck with the second pair for sure… took me a pair to get going. Oh these two boys… nice pose {they make me laugh!} I’d love to know if you use this reversible mesh shorts tutorial to sew up a pair or two! The Free pattern is here.


Want a 5/6T tank to go with the shorts? Here’s a free pattern:

free tank pattern1

I’ve also created a long pants version of these mesh pants…. you can find the pattern and all the details here.

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Emily is a stay at home mom to two crazy boys {which she adores} , one equally crazy daughter and one amazing husband. She loves to sew, but also dabbles in crafting and recipes. Her faith, friends and family keep her going and motivated. Come along for the ride!


  1. These are so cool!
    Carisa Smith recently posted…I LOVE YOU plus a FREE printableMy Profile

  2. Cute shorts and even more adorable boys, I love the poses Emily, keep them for the 21st LOL
    Mel recently posted…WYPWMy Profile

  3. I just Got some black ruffle faribc… i was wondering what to do with it, now i know! : ) Thanks! and i LOVE your blog, your so sweet and full of inspiration! -Bobbi


  1. […] around a pair of shorts that fit your child and use her tutorial to see how to sew them up. Get the pattern and tutorial at Nap Time […]

  2. […] If you need free patterns I’ve got a 18-6T Raglan shirt pattern thats free, and also this Shorts pattern for free. You can also check out my two free pattern round ups 20+ free kids patterns for Summer and 20+ free […]

  3. […] row (L-R): sunny day shorts from Oliver + S (kids sizes 6m-12) reversible mesh shorts from Nap-Time Creations (boys sizes 2-10) rohan skater shorts from Crafty Kitty for Birch (boys […]

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