Ginger Ski Pants

I bought myself a pair of ski pants recently for our ski holiday. Unlike most ski pants that are loose, these are fitting, more like actual trousers.  The only problem is, I am in between sizes which is quite frustrating.  These pants weren't cheap so accepting that the fit was off was quite difficult.

Because I have Goretex in my stash and had made ski pants in the past, I decided to make a pair that did fit and return the rtw pair.  I used Ginger Jeans by Closet Case Files as my starting point.  I then redrew the rise 5cm higher and extended the side seams by 5cm as well.  I straightened the legs by the same amount on both the inside and outside leg, starting at the crotch.  Because of potential waterproofing issues, I left off all pockets and only added a single row of topstitching.

After fitting my trousers over jeans I added a waistband.  I cut a straight waistband that I curved to be wider at the back than the front so that when I sit on the chair lift the pants don't ride down and cause draught issues.  I then cut an extra layer of waistband at the back only which became a tunnel of sorts to contain the elastic belt.  I then added belt loops as normal before creating the elastic belt which is just 5cm wide elastic that is self covered each end in Goretex with velcro attached.   This then threads through the tunnel and attached via the velcro at each end enabling he waist to be adjusted depending on how many layering pieces I need to wear, clear as mud right!

To insulate the pants I cut an extra identical layer in very heavy polar fleece which I added a waterproof breathable nylon layer to below the knee and this was attached at the hem and waistband.  I also made a snow skirt for each leg out of the same nylon layer, which I also enclosed in the horizontal knee lining seam and added an elastic band at the hem.  To do this I measured my ski boot and sewed the elastic into a ring.  I sewed it to the bottom of the snow skirt with my overlocker and then turned it over and topstitched. 

The final step was to hand stitch my polar fleece lining at the zip to prevent any cold air seeping through and then adding co-ordinating snaps at the waist.

While this project wasn't without it's trials, and by that I mean the devil in this one is the fitting detail, I am really thrilled with how they turned out.  The Goretex I purchased for $5 for an entire grocery bag when my youngest was a baby, the polar fleece Courteney picked up at Spotlight for $4 per metre on clearance and the co-ordinating  nylon was left over from another of her projects.  The snaps I bought when I ran my nappy making business, what seems a lifetime ago now.  The only things I really had to purchase were the elastic, velcro and zip.  Instead of very overpriced pair of rtw pants I have invested a small amount and a week of evenings and one weekend and now have a made to measure pair.

I have since given these pants a good workout and even spent some time on my backside in the snow.  My kids like to tell a very embarrassing story involving me falling off the chair lift while dismounting  and the chair having to be shut down while I rearranged myself, I kid you not!  This was all deliberate of course 😉 in the name of testing the waterproof properties of my new pants.  I am pleased to report that seam sealing would have in fact been unnecessary and polar fleece is indeed more than warm enough as an insulating layer on a New Zealand ski field.  With another month of winter left and at least one more into spring which will be skiable I am looking forward to giving them another wearing very soon.


  1. Wow!! these look amazing, I'm so impressed, they're so professional and beautifully made. Well done! I'm really keen to make a goretex jacket someday for myself, just need to find the fabric... somewhere! I had to laugh though at the typo "drought issues" hehe.. I'm guessing that was meant to be "draught issues?!"

    1. Haha yup! Spell check isn't very helpful when the spelling is actually correct!

  2. These ski pants are so impressive Andrea. You have done an awesome job.

  3. Hi: Just recently discovered your blog, and happened upon this post. I am so impressed with the ski pants you made. As a Canadian mom, I have sewed a lot of snow pants for my kids to wear over the years, and none of them were anywhere near the quality of yours. Mine were based on an elastic waist pajama pant, with an outer layer of ripstop nylon, and an inner layer of polar fleece. I thought I was pretty clever to include some elastic around the hem of the fleece layer to make it easier to tuck into boots, but that pales in comparison to your snow skirt. More recently, I've made cross country ski pants out of a stretch soft shell using Style Arc's free Barb pants pattern, which worked well. I've printed off this blogpost as I know I'll be wanting to borrow your ideas for the next pair of snow pants I have to make.


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