DIY: Linen Culottes


I've been making a bit of an effort lately to find alternatives for my go to jeans for winter.  Culottes seem like the ultimate styling winter warmer with the ability to dress up or keep it casual. I've been dreaming up this piece for a while now and so fun to finally see them come to life and right in time for the cold snap on the coast. 

Find the steps below for how I made a pair of culottes.


The Essentials

- Linen Fabric (I'm a size 10 and used approx 1.6m)

- Lining Fabric (to prevent seeing through if the linen is a light colour)

- Zip (approx 20cm)

- Matching Thread

- Fabric Scissors

- Sewing Machine 





If you already have a pair of pants you like the size of then use that as guide to your measurements. 

As it's a fitted waist style start by measuring your full waist length. 1/4 this and then add 5 inches (3 inches added for the leg width and 2 for seam allowance). That will be the width of the leg panel. No measure from your belly button to where you'd like the pants to finish and add 2 inches. Cute four panels to these LxW measurements. Then get the crotch of an existing pair of pants that aren't too baggy or tight and replicate this curve on each panel (face all the good sides up and do two to the top left and two to the top right)

If the fabric is see through then duplicate each panel with a lining fabric.


Place the good sides of the linen together and sew down just the crotch. Repeat this for the other side and if you're using lining then on these too.


(Step only applicable if using lining) Face the good sides of the linen and lining inward and sew across waistline when you flip out to reveal good sides you'll find a nice clean 'hem'. Repeat for other side.



Time to join the side seams. So again face the good sides of the linen together and pin down side seams ready to sew. Towards the top of your preferred side pin in place the zip. Sew zip then down both side seams to connect the two sides (remember to stop about 20cm from the bottom to allow for splits)


At this point the waist would still be quite wide. So this is where dart points will be added to help shape the top half to your hips. It might be best to try on the pants at this point to determine how much needs to be taken in. But generally basing it off the initial measurements we added to the waist length, a 1 inch  per leg panel should be perfect. 

Prepare the halfway point of each panel and mark/pin the 1inch starting point and draw or pin a line in place that reaches about 20 centimetres from the top.


Time to clean up the final edges. Face good sides of the back and front sides together and sew down remaining centre leg seam to secure into the shape of pants!

For these I added a split on the outside, therefore I hemmed the lining so it stopped before it and would allow the split to be a bit more free flowing. If you didn't leave a gap when sewing down the side seam then just unpick to the desired point and hem along the bottom and up the gap area. 

Finally sew as close to the edge along the top to give it a nice flat finish!



I normally do whatever I can to avoid using zips so this one was a healthy challenge for me. 

Linen culottes are such a beautiful staple piece for any wardrobe with the ability to easily dress up or keep things casual -  but still styling.



Hope this was helpful! As always, let me know if you give this tutorial a go and how it turns out. Hashtag the outcome #essentialsclub on social media.