Back to School for Boys: Sturdy Pants and a Zip Hoodie

I went to buy camouflage fabric the other day … but couldn’t find it. Ba dum bum.

Of course, I did find it at Cali Fabrics, and incorporated two different camo fabrics into these sturdy back-to-school basics for boys: a zip-up hoodie and pull-on pants.

The jacket is my Hello Hoodie pattern with the hooded view, contrast side panels and sleeves, and of course, pockets. I used two colors of fleece and lined it with a thermal knit.


The olive green polar fleece has a light nap on the right side with a textured wrong side. The black polar fleece is slightly thinner than the olive and has a finer texture on the right side. They are both soft and cuddly, 100% poly polar fleece with a bit of stretch.

The liner is a midweight thermal knit in an olive green camo print. It has a bit of 2-way stretch and is a poly/cotton blend. I was concerned that it was little stiff out of the box but the first washing softened it right up! It’s the perfect fabric for a warm hoodie. As the name implies, thermal fabric is made to trap body heat between the textured yarns so is nice and cozy for outerwear and PJs.


I color-blocked the side panels and sleeves, and added a gray zipper. It’s the zipper I had on hand that was the right size, but let’s pretend I intentionally added it for an edgy pop, OK?
Fleece is so easy to sew, it’s a great fabric even for beginners.  It doesn’t fray, so no seam finishing is needed, it’s forgiving of less-than-straight seams and doesn’t shift when you cut it.  The waffle knit is equally easy to please. No curly edges, no crazy stretching and also no edge-finishing needed, just a nice easy sew that gives you a soft, warm garment.
Special tools/notions for both: ballpoint needle, polyester thread.

The pants are my Potato Chip Pants and Shorts pattern. Like the Potato Chip Skirt, these have a flat front, elastic back, and front pockets. The pants have a back yoke and decorative ‘pocket flaps’ in back.


I used this amazing cotton/lycra camouflage stretch twill. I can’t say how much I love this fabric, it sewed so easily I could have done it with my eyes closed (though not recommended). Because the fabric had a bit of stretch and I wanted these to be a close fit, I sized my model down a size (also, because skinny kid). Then I added some wide elastic in the hems to give him that ‘joggers’ look he prefers for his pants.


The twill is midweight and feels so sturdy! These pants are going to last him forever, or until he grows, which will probably be next week.

Just a note about the twill. It is printed on one side only, so if you were making roll-up pants or some construction that would show the reverse side, you’d want to add a facing.

Special tools/notions: Used a 100/16 needle though a 90/14 probably would have been fine as well. I wish I had used a thicker topstitching thread on the pocket details.

Nothing completes an outfit like bunny ears!

I hope you’ve enjoyed reading along with my adventures in apparel fabric! You can find Part 1 and Part 2 here on the Cali & Co blog.


Jen’s line of PDF sewing patterns for children is at and she blogs here.


Jen H, from Tie Dye Diva

Jen creates PDF format sewing patterns for women, children and babies at

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