Harem pants are loose pants which come in a variety of patterns. They are a slight modification of the regular Patiala salwar. Here the salwar is gathered and stitched at the ankle and not loose as in a normal patiala. Sometimes an elastic is stitched (or inserted) to get gathers as shown in the last picture. Harem pants with different cuts and patterns are available in the market. They are often worn with short kurtis or t- shirts and are very fashionable. Knee length harem pants are also popular. Harem pants are usually stitched on printed and thin but non transparent fabrics. Check out this page for more patterns and designs of Harem pants. The construction and method of stitching a basic harem pant which resembles a patiala salwar is given below.

Cloth requirements: approximately 3 ½ metres of cloth.

There are basically 3 parts
  • One waist band
  • 2 kalli pieces (one for each leg)
  • 4 triangle shaped pieces (two for each leg)
Apart from this draw string and ankle bands also have to be stitched.

Measurements needed

Length of the salwar (41”)
Hip (35”)
Round ankle (12” + 1” for stitching allowance)

Approximate measurements are given in brackets. This is only for reference. Take your own measurements and use it to stitch the harem pant. 


For the legs

0 to 1 = salwar length - waist band width (i.e. 8”) - ankle band width (i.e. 2”) + 1” (e.g. 41”-8”-2”+1” = 32”)
0 to 2 = Full cloth width
1 to 3 = Full cloth width
1 to 4 = 3”
2 to 5 = 3”
6 to 7 = (1/3 hip) + 1 ½” – waist band width
8 to 7 = (1/3 hip) + 1 ½” – waist band width
Join 5 to 4


First take the required amount of cloth and open fully. Then fold it into half in the reverse side such that the two ends of the cloth are on top of each other.

Take the ends as 1 and 3.

0 to 2 and 1 to 3 are full cloth widths.

From the edge leave ½” allowance and mark the 0 to 1 measurement (e.g. 32”) as shown. Similarly mark 2 as shown. Draw a straight line joining 0 and 2.

Then from 1 and 2, measure 3” respectively as shown to get 4 and 5. Join 4 and 5.

Now calculate 6 to 7 and 8 to 7 measurements and mark as shown in the figure.(If for e.g. it is 6” then take an inch tape and place over 5 measurement. Start moving towards 0 upto the point you measure 6”on the 5 to 4 line. Mark 7 on the line as shown)

Now cut the cloth at the 4 to 5 line and 0 to 2 line.

Place all the 4 layers on top of each other and leave ½” at the top and along the diagonal. Leave 1/2” allowance at the 6 to 7 line as well and cut the cloth. Both the legs are stitched together at this line.
Now, using the remainder of cloth cut the kalli pieces, ankle bands and waist band.

Kalli piece

Cut two pieces using the following measurements

0 to 1 = salwar length – waist band width – ankle band width + 1”
0 to 2 = approximately 13” (including stitching allowance. The maximum that we can take is 16”)
1 to 3 = approximately 13”

Waist band

Cut one single piece for the waist band using the following measurements

0 to 1 = waist band width (i.e. 8”) +2”= 10”
The 2” extra is taken to make the opening for inserting the draw string.
0 to 2 = full hip +6” (e.g. 46”)
1 to 3 = full hip +6”

After cutting the pieces, place them in this way.

Stitch the 3 pieces of one leg together. Do the same thing with the other leg.

Measure your round ankle and add 1”and check with your inch tape if you can pass the circle easily through your leg. Increase 1" or 2" if it is tight or reduce if it is loose. Note this length (e.g. 13") and pleat the cloth along the line a to b such that the length reduces to 13”. Next cut 2 ankle bands of length = 13” and breadth 7 ½”.  Cut the cloth stiffener of the same length and 2 1/2” breadth. Stitch the cloth stiffener and the ankle bands to the ankle part of the legs as an extra piece. (Usually while stitching a salwar or patiala we stitch the ankle bands to the ankle part and turn the ankle bands to the reverse, but here the ankle bands have to be stitched such that they increase the length of the harem pant by 2”). Stitch 3 or 4 lines to make it stiff. (If you wish to keep the ankle band fitting to your ankle, then you can make a small opening and stitch a hook or a button.) 

Once the two legs are ready, join the two legs at the 6 to 7 line. Then take the waist band, stitch the two ends together in the reverse leaving 1” allowance near the edges and 1 ½” allowance on top. Double fold the excess cloth at the sides inwards and stitch. Next, double fold on top for the draw string and stitch on top. For detailed explanation, refer how to stitch waistband.

Once the waist band is ready, stitch the legs to the waist band taking 1/2” pleats throughout the circumference of the waist band. Make sure that the pleats are evenly distributed and yet cover the entire circumference. You can do long stitches with a thread and needle and check if it comes out perfect. Make a draw string and insert through the opening in the waist band. Finish the salwar by overlocking the cloth in the reverse to prevent thread from coming out. Harem pant is now ready.

Other variations

Harem pant with elastic at the ankle 

If you intend to use an elastic then take the length without subtracting the ankle band width (e.g 34") for all the pieces. Follow the same procedure as given above. Here you will not need an ankle band, just double fold the cloth and insert an elastic of length 9" or 10" and breadth 1/2". When you insert the elastic, pleats will be formed naturally.


  1. The best and clearest direction for Patiala I found on the web! Thanks


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