Salwar Pants Pattern (& Easy sewing instructions)

Learn all about stitching salwar pants - Dhothi pants, Patiala Pants, Palazzo pants and churidhar pants - make patterns and sew them for yourself.
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DIY pattern to sew Dhothi pants, salwar pants, churidhar pants, parallel pants and Patiala pants SEW SIMPLE PANTS FOR YOUR TUNICS/ SALWAR KAMEEZ

So you want to sew your salwar kameez pants. You may want to wear it with your favorite kurta or tunic. Or the store-bought one needs to be better. Or you want to sew one for your darling daughter.

Whatever the reason, if you are apprehensive about sewing salwar pants for the first time, let me assure you the first time you sew a pant is the hardest. The next time you sew it, it is a breeze once you have the pattern with you.

In this tutorial, I will give you all the details about preparing the salwar pants pattern and stitching of plain Salwar pants and their variations like Patiala, and simple elastic waist salwar pants.

Suppose you are planning to stitch the pants many times. In that case, you can make paper stitching patterns by creating the markings on paper (I usually join two full sheets of newspaper or craft paper to form a big piece) rather than on the cloth itself and keep it somewhere safe to use again and again.

Stitching with this pattern drawn on paper will save you a lot of time that you will spend in the time-consuming pattern drawing and calculating, and it will leave you free to enjoy the pleasure of sewing.

When you go to the shop to buy cloth to stitch the salwar separately, other than as a salwar kameez set, remember to take your body measurement, to know the correct yardage to buy. Measure the waist ( or wherever you tie the salwar ) to the floor, then double the measurement to know how much cloth you should buy for your plain salwar. I.e., if the full-length height is 110 cm, you should buy 210 cm (2.10 meters) of fabric.

Cloth needed for different pants

  • Plain salwar – Double the length needed. 
  • Churidhar – Double the length needed plus 1/4 meter if you want more churis.
  • Patiala – Double the length needed plus 1/2 meter (44 inches wide cloth), for a Patiala with some gathers. If you want a real Patiala with lots of gathers, you need about 4 meters of cloth. With 3.5 meters, you get decent enough folds. 
  • Parallel -Double the length needed plus 1/4 meter extra.
Checkout the posts on Quick Tips for Accurate Sewing Measurements  for more details.

Plain Salwar pattern cutting and stitching

There are 4 pieces to the Plain salwar pattern 1. Waist piece 2. Pant piece 3. Canvas piece 4. Tie piece

Measurement to be taken for stitching a salwar

Full length – From where you tie the salwar to your heels. Hip round – take the measurement around the hip loosely Pant flair round – take the measurement around the ankle loosely. This is usually taken as 12 -14 ” . (I usually take 13″. Seam allowance is extra. 

Pant Piece ( we will be cutting 2 pieces like this on fold ) Checkout  How to cut fabric to know more details on how to fold fabric for cutting.

salwar pants pattern with all the markings for cutting on fabric with your measurements

B-E – Adults – (Full length – 7 inches) + 1 inches ( 7 inches is taken for the belt of salwar) Kids -1/6th of hip round + I inches A-B – This is as per Hip measurement – generally you can take half of hip round. If you are particular you can mark as per the measurement below 

For below 34 inches half of hip round For 34 inches to 42 inches – 18 inches For above 42 inches – 20-22 inches

B-D – 1/6 of hip round + 1 inch E-F –half of the pant flair you want; 12 inches is usually taken. C-F Join in a straight line ; take keep one inch stitching margin (seam allowance) outside it. (as shown in the diagram )

Waist piece ( 1 piece cut on fold) A-B = E-F – Half of hip round + 3.5 – 5  inches A-E /B-F= For adults – 10 inches / For Kids – (1/6 of hip round) +1 inches Mark A –C / B-D – 3 inches for folding inside for the tie to be inserted

salwar bottom tutorial - the waist yoke pattern When marking on fabric, make sure it is placed on a folded cloth, and B-F is along the fold. Open the full waist piece, divide it into four parts, and make a small mark with your marking tool/chalk – this is for accurately joining it to the pant piece.

Canvas piece A strip of canvas piece or 2 inches * the Pant flair measurement A cloth piece which is 2½ inches * the pant flair measurement

Tie Piece (Fabric straps)

Checkout the tutorial to make thin fabric tubes.  Take a strip of cloth 3 times hip round and 2 inches wide. If you have bias strip that would be ideal. Make a tie with this strip. Another way is to take your waist measurement and add 20 inches as overhang. 

When cutting the cloth, you have to remember to mark the pant pieces first and cut. This is because, at times (when you are getting the ready-made material of the salwar kameez), the cloth may not be sufficient; in that case, we will have to make some adjustments and get the piece for the waist piece from along the side C-F of the pant piece.

How to stitch the salwar bottom

STEP 1 Join the waist piece by A – E making a tube – leaving 5 inches opening for slit. 

waist piece of salwar pants STEP 2

Stitch along the side of the slit opening as shown in the diagram: Edge stitch along the folded seam allowance from inside

waist piece stitching - how the drawstring part is to be stitched

Fold the Waist piece on top by 2 ½ inches on top edge for a case for the ties. You have to stitch enclosing the raw edges .


Stitching the bottom edge of the salwar Iron the canvas piece, leaving half an inch along the long side of the cloth piece.

Stitch this, keeping it to the Right side (Right sides together) of the pant piece so that when turned inside the canvas cannot be seen.

Fold the cloth inside so that the whole canvas is enclosed. Join this to the pant bottom edge by keeping the canvas piece and pant piece right sides together.

Then you can stitch some 2-3 rows of straight stitches parallel to the hem.

how to stitch a salwar pant cuff part

STEP 4 Join the pant pieces one by one along the C –F. Then Join the two pant piece parts along the cutting at the crotch.

STEP 5 Now mark the midpoint of the waist piece. Join it from the back to the front side along one side. Stop at the side. Then likewise join from the other side till the front side.

salwar waist piece casing STEP 6 From the front, stitch 4-5 inches to the side without pleats and then make small gathers till you reach the place where you had earlier stopped. Do the same with the other side.

STEP 7 Finally make the ties and insert inside the casing with a safety pin.

STEP 8 Iron to a good finish and enjoy your new salwar.


Salwar pants make a very comfortable bottom wear. The loose folds of this pants make it a favourite to be worn with Kurtas, tunics, kameez, even crop tops. It is very easy to make this pants. 

If you have made the paper pattern, you just have to keep the pattern on to the fabric and cut it out. Or here I am giving all the details about marking the pants pattern onto the fabric directly and sewing it. If you like other casual pants you may as well checkout the tutorial for pyjama  pants , drawstring lounge pants and wrap pants ( yoga pants and samurai pants) 

How much fabric is needed to sew the salwar pants

You need atleast 2.10 meters of cloth for sewing salwar kameez pants. That is what I need and I am 5′ 2″. The way to calculate yardage is to double the length needed + add a few inches like 5″.

When laying out to cut the fabric, Remember that for the legs part you have four layers of cloth and for the waist part two layers of cloth. So both are cut differently. First we will cut for the legs piece.

Fold the cloth you have widthwise once (a-b in the diagram) and cut through the line. Now fold the two pieces of cloth (Your two pant legs) lengthwise i.e vertically so that you have a center fold on one edge. (c-d in the diagram)

How to fold the salwar kameez pant fabric so that it can be cut
fabric for the salwar kameez bottom is folded twice and kept on your table

You may want to do some embroidery on the pants . You will have to do this after you mark the pattern and preferably before you cut it out. If you know to do embroidery, do some small motifs near the bottom edge or on the lower portion of the leg like this

salwar pant sewing -how the pant hems are decorated
embroidery work on the bottom edge of salwar pants
Mark top portion as half of hip round. or you can mark as follows ( Look at the diagram below) For below 34 inches half of hip round For 34 inches to 42 inches – 18 inches For above 42 inches – 20-22 inches Mark the length as Full length you need for the salwar pants minus 5 inch. Crotch line on the other side ( cut edge) is marked from top as  1/6 of hip round + 1″ For easy reference if your hip is
    • 34″ mark this as 6 1/2″ 
    • 35″ mark this as 6 3/4″
    • 36 ” mark this as 7″
    • 37″ mark this as 7 1/4″
    • 38″ mark this as 7 1/4″
    • 39″ mark this as 7 1/4″
    • 40″ mark this as 7 1/2″
    • 41″ mark this as 7 3/4″
    • 42″ mark this as 8″
Mark the bottom edge as 6 -7″ from the fold ( This is depending on the round you want for the pants flair. I usually want a 13″ pant flair for simple salwar pants ) Join the crotch line to the bottom flair. Add I” seam allowance.
measurement to be marked for the salwar bottom pants
Mark the dimensions in the picture for each leg
Cut it out. Now you get two legs of pants.
cutting and sewing of salwar bottom
The 2 leg pieces of the salwar pants
Prepare the stiffening for the bottom of the pants. I definitely interface this area. Cut out an interfacing piece of 13 -14″ with width of 1″. Press this interfacing onto a cloth strip of 13″ – 14″ length and width 1 1/2″. Press this onto the middle so that there is a seam allowance of 1/4 inch on both sides.( look at the picture below)
how to sew pants for punjabi suit

How to stitch Salwar Kameez Pants – the simple and easy way

Keep the facing piece you have cut, interfacing facing up, on the pant piece right side up. (ie. Right sides of these clothes will be together)  Stitch this piece to the pants. You will be sewing along the 1/4″ seam allowance and along the interfacing edge ; donot stitch over the interfacing strip.
punjabi suit bottom tutorial
Turn this stitched piece to the other side of pants. Fold the raw edge inside and stitch along the edge. You can now sew parallel lines of straight stitch or decorative stitches like wavy lines across the interfacing piece. I simple make two parallel straight stitching lines. Here I haven’t done any – just the joining stitch.Do this for the pant pieces. Your bottom edge of the pants is finished.
how to sew punjabi suit bottom pants
Starting from the bottom join the pant legs one after the other. Stop when you reach the crotch line.You will be joining the crotch line of the pants to each other.
sew side seams of the salwar pants
sew salwar bottom
Turn the pants right side out. Join the two pants together by Keeping the crotch lines on top of the other on the inside. Remember to reinforce all the stitching by double stitching, especially the crotch line.
how to sew salwar pants
Leg part of the pants is ready. 
sewing salwar pants
To make the waist part of the salwar kameez pants you need another cloth which is wide by atleast double your hip round + 10 inch. Keep it on fold and mark as in the diagram below
cut the pattern to sew pants for salwar kameez
Sew the fabric edges together making a tube. Remember to stop stitching atleast 3 1/2 inch from one edge. 
Sew the fabric edges together making a tube. Remember to stop stitching atleast 3 1/2 inch from one edge. 
Press the seam open on the inside of the tube.
Press the seams
Press the raw edges of the seam allowance inside like below
turn the edges of the fabric
Stitch along the edges 
salwar kameez pants tutorial step by step
Turn the upper edge atleast 1 1/2 inches inside for the casing for waist ties. Stitch along the edge. 
sew the casing for the waist of the pants
attach the yoke to the pants for churidhar
Now you have to adjust the excess fabric in the leg piece to fit the waist piece.Make notches at sides and center back and front of the pant piece and waist pieces. These should be matched and pinned. Turn the leg piece inside out.  Insert the waist piece so that right sides of both the pieces are together . Pin along the raw edge making sure that notches you have made are aligned  . Where there is excess fabric make pleats like below. Stitch in place.
sew the pleats of the salwar pants

Finish the raw fabric edges with a serger, overcast or zig zag stitches. You may also use the pinking shears, though if it is going to be washed a lot this is not a good idea. Check out the various fabric edge options available.

You need to make waist ties for this pants; Of course you can use the ready made ones but I like to make them for myself. Use this tutorial to make fabric straps to make these ties. Basically you take a strip of fabric about 1 inch wide, fold the raw edges inside and stitch along the edges to make these ties. You need a length of your waist round and about 20 inches overhang.

 salwar pants
Tada ! Your salwar pants is ready. Make this is in as many colours and fabrics as you could get your hands on, like I do. A girl needs her pants.  Related posts
drawstring lounge pants
bohemian hippie pants
diy wrap pants pattern

Patiala Salwar pants (Semi and Full) – Pattern cutting and stitching

Patiala is a plain salwar with more pleats. The difference between full Patiala and semi Patiala salwar is that Full Patiala has more pleats than a Semi Patiala.

If the cloth is not sufficient to give as much flair as you want, you will have to make do with joining two pieces of cloth to the middle pant piece to get more flares ( as shown in the diagram )

Patiala is best if stitched in synthetic materials. If we use cotton fabric to stitch the Patiala, it will look bulky. The fabric required is 2.5 times the full length.

If the cloth is not sufficient to give as much flair as you want you will have to make do with joining two pieces of cloth to the middle pant piece to get more flares ( as shown in the diagram ).

In Patiala, the pleats will come more to the front when compared to the plain salwar.

cutting of patiala pattern

Layout of pattern pieces of Patiala on cloth.

patiala cutting

Here is a more detailed tutorial to sew a Patiala Pants. patial pants pattern

Side embroidered Salwar pants- Pattern cutting and stitching

Side-embroidered salwar pants are cool and elegant if done right. For this to be done when marking the salwar, along the AE portion mark 1 ½ inches outside ie a total of 3 inches increase in the middle. Do the embroidery along the center of the area. Stitch along the AE line. Open the cloth, stitch along the both sides so that the embroidery lies flat in the middle of the pant piece.

embroidered pants -pattern

embroidered pants opened

Check out the post on various Indian Embroidery designs you can use on the embroidered pants. Mirror work , Eyelet embroidery or some Bullion knot roses would also look great . Any of the 12 border patterns ( hand embroidery ) would work as well. 

embroidery borders

Checkout the DIY leggings pattern. Sewing leggings is similar to sewing the chudi pants; the  gusset piece sewing and the ankle placket sewing for hooks  are explained in detail in this tutorial. 

how to make a leggings - diy

Elastic waist Salwar pants 

parellel pants The bottom flair of Parallel pants can depend on personal preference, but usually, a round of 20 inches is normal so take I-J as 10 inches. Open the cut pattern pieces. Stitch along B- D to join the pant pieces. Stitch the leg sides. Make pant hem.  Make the casing for elastic by folding the cloth inside; Leave a 1-inch gap to insert the elastic.

Elastic should be cut 1 inches less than the waist measurement for it to fit snugly around your waist. 

Check out the Palazzo Pants stitching tutorial for an alternative to parallel pants 

Also checkout the pajama pants pattern and sewing tutorial ( with side slash pockets)

pajama pants pattern

If you are new to sewing and would like to learn sewing basics checkout my post on How to sew when you are just beginning 

You may also want to check out

Free DIY Stitching patterns to sew your own clothes

cutting and stitching salwar kameez   how to hem jeans

how to sew sari petticoats     how to stitch sari blouse

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Author: Sarina Tariq

Hi, I love sewing, fabric, fashion, embroidery, doing easy DIY projects and then writing about them. Hope you have fun learning from sewguide as much as I do. If you find any mistakes here, please point it out in the comments.

3 thoughts on “Salwar Pants Pattern (& Easy sewing instructions)”

  1. I was excited to find this page, but having looked it over, I got lost on the very first diagram, which makes no sense to me. Specifically, the “B-C – 1/6 hip round + 1 inch”. B-C is a DIAGONAL. So how does this work? Completely confused as to how I would use 1/6 hip round to make this diagonal. Did you mean “B-D”?? I’m guessing that you did, but it’s so confusing, I’m giving up on your instructions and will go back to copying off the salwar I already own. You might want to clarify or fix this for the next person.

    • What you said is right, it is B-D and I am sorry for the oversight.Corrected. Thanks for pointing it out.

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