Friday, 4 August 2017

My First Pair of Trousers

I did it - I made trousers and they are wearable!
Way back in the early part of the year I make a muslin of trousers from Burdastyle magazine. They did not fit! Way way too tight,  and the back rise and crotch curve were just wrong.

So I set out on drafting and making my own. I like the high waist cigarette pants from Gertie's book, but was not sure that they would be any better as I'm pear shaped, have along torso and fairly chunky legs - years of skating and dancing have left me with well developed thighs and over extended calf muscles.

My initial draft was OK, but there was lots of excess fabric in the back leg. The waist was also too low and too wide.

Changes made were: Raise the back by adding a wedge into the CB seam; lengthen the back Crotch seam and scoop out more. scoop out the front crotch seam a little; Narrow the legs and then take a wedge out from under the butt. I also found the fabric was catching on my calf muscles so I made a extended calf adjustment on the back pattern piece and finally drafted a curved waistband. I also made the back pockets a bit bigger than the original draft.

I used the Ginger Jeans sew a long to help with the construction order and found it very helpful. I added stable cotton for the pocket linings and tacked to the front seam. Top stitching was done in self coloured thread. The fabric behaved beautifully. I bought 2m at B&M fabrics in Leeds at the #sewupnorth event in June. I had enough left over the make a version of the Cleo dungarees dress by Tilly & the Buttons.

These trousers are completely wearable, but they are not perfect.

This was my first time sewing with a stretch woven and I'm a convert - the comfort and stability of the fabric was brilliant.

So verdict - I'm really happy with these for my first pair of trousers. I will make some adjustments for the next pair. I wore these for 2 days and the fit was great to start, but as with all denim, it slackens off when you wear it. I was really happy with the back waistband and the fit at the back - it's the first time I've had trousers that don't gape!

Adjustments for next time:-
Lengthen the legs slightly - about 3cm and add more hem
Taper the back leg at the hem, below the calf - I'm sewing with stretch there is no need for flappy hems!
Take a small wedge out of the back inseam under the butt - just to help with those wrinkles.
Take a pinch out of the front at the pocket edge to make them lie flat.
Take a small wedge amount out of the front crotch seam and check the curve.
Pinch out excess on the front waist seam to abdomen (where you would put a dart) as this is where I found the draft gaped quite a bit and I found myself pulling them up a lot, especially on the second day of wear. I do want to keep the comfort and not make them too tight.


  1. They look fantastic. I would never have guessed they were hand made. Very professional. Well done! #PoCoLo

  2. Brilliant - such a good fit too, I'm impressed :) Thanks for sharing with #PoCoLo x

  3. Looking good, Claire!!! I can never get a good fit with pants, and that's using a pattern. Super impressed that you made your own pattern.


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