Heh, heh, thank you for the enabling words about my recent fabric purchase. I should know by now to trust fellow seamstresses to understand the temptationsof good AND cheap fabric.
In this post I will, as promised, try to explain how to draft the pattern for those culottes.
In any pattern making method, culotte patterns (or split skirts or whatever you may call them) are based on skirt blocks. For this pair, you start out with a half-circle skirt. Draft one of those is very easy and quite similar to drafting a circle skirt.
Interestingly, circle skirts are much more common as draft-your-own projects but most commercial patterns for 'full skirts' are in fact half-circle ones. Take Burdastyle's Linda for example. Although I love circle skirts, there are quite a few practical advantages to this slightly more modest relative. The amount of fabric required, to name just one. And they're a little less likely to be blown all the way up on just the slightest breeze...
Anyway, for the culotte pattern you will need your waist circumference, hip height (vertical distance from waist to hip) and sitting height (when seated straight, this is the vertical distance from waist to chair). You may know these measurement by different names, not all charts use the same names for the same things and I'm translating from Dutch.
If you want to make a more low-slung version, substitute 'waist' for 'where-ever you want the waistband to sit'. Just make sure you measure to the same 'waistline every time.
For the half-circle skirt, this is the formula for the waistline: waist circumference times 2 divided by 6,28 is the radius of the circle part (essentially, this is just like drafting a circle skirt, just with a circle which could fit your waist twice)
You only need to draw a quarter of a circle, so I usually start with the corner of a piece of paper as the center of the circle.
When you have drawn the waistline, draw the hemline at the distance you want. One my culottes, that was about 40 cm.
This is the end result. Make sure to mark the center line (most easily done by folding the cut-out pattern exactly in half). Front and back of the skirt are the same.
To make the skirt pattern into a pattern for culottes, cut the pattern piece along its center line.
First, add 10 cm to the center front/back lines of both pieces. This is for the front and back pleat.
Then, measure along the center front line and mark the sitting height. From that point, draw a line at a right angle from center front, the length of which should be 1/10 of you hip circumference + 2,5. Square down to the hemline.
Now, mark the hip height on the center front line and draw a gentle curve from that point to the middle of the line.
Repeat the previous step at the back. Only here, the length of the line should be 2/10 of your hip circumference - 3 cm, creating a more roomy crotch curve.
This is your pattern finished. Just add waistband (and pockets if desired)
You can add seam allowance either on the paper or on the fabric. Both pieces should be cut twice with the center front and back on the straight grain. I only just managed to cut my, rather short, version out of folded fabric of 1,40 meter wide. So, if you have a bigger size (I'm about a Burda 36) and/or want your longer, expect to need about the desired length times 4 in fabric.
To assemble, sew along the original center front line for about 15 cm, partially closing the front pleat. Then, sew the front crotch curve.
Repeat these steps at the back.
Then, sew the inner leg seam and then the outer one, leaving about 18 cm open on the left side to insert a zipper.
Insert the zipper and sew on the waistband. Hem.
My culottes are lined. I omitted the pleats in the lining to reduce bulk. This works fine. Otherwise, you sew the lining like the outside, attaching it to the zipper before you sew on the waistband. Outside and lining are treated as one when sewing the waistband. I've hemmed them seperately, as I usually do on flared skirts.
This also means you could make these culottes just the same without the pleats, but I think those box pleats add to their almost-a-skirt look.
I hope this how-to makes sense to you. Feel free to ask if anything isn't clear.
As usual, if you make something using this tutorial, please drop me line in the comments, I'd love to see it.