Friday, October 07, 2016

My holiday was pants (and tunics)

After the last two pairs of trousers I sewed up (the first - a basic style with a back zipper and no pockets or waistband -  was successful; the second - more ambitious but ultimately fitting failure), I was on a roll. Then the latest season of Great British Sewing Bee started here, so there was no stopping me.

During my week off (ostensibly taken to spend time with TLM, who is on school holidays, and the boy, who is still between jobs) I was hellbent on sewing more trousers until I produced more pairs of fitting successes.

Trousers number 3 were based on the muslin that produced trousers number 1 (which fit me well but for which I was a bit slack with recording the adjustments), in a light poplin-y fabric of navy with with dots. I was finding it a bit loose around the highs and waist. Then I decided it was because that fabric really wanted to be elastic waisted jogger-style trousers.  So I took out the zipper, put an elasticated waistband and inserted elastic cuffs into the hems. They now fit alright, although it would have benefited from a decrease in the front crotch.

(Lesson: definitely shorten the front crotch next time, maybe lengthen the back crotch).

For trousers number 4 I used an old Vogue pattern which offered two views: high waisted, jeans-style pockets and tapered; hight waisted, inseam pockets and tapered. Because it is an old pattern. The only other time I used this sewing pattern was to make some faux leather trousers to wear to a pre-millennial Village People-themed pub crawl. That's how old it is.

Guess what - it fit me almost perfectly, once I'd let out the front inseam, scooped out the centre back curve, taken in the outer leg seams quite a lot and drafted a new waistband to fit my wider waist. Although they fit well in the sense that it is relatively free of bagging and wrinkles around the crucial hip and thigh areas, the legs are still much wider than I'd like. These were made in a light grey denim. I have effectively made mom jeans (though I made the view with the inseam pockets rather than the jeans pockets). Also the back wants to fall down a bit and the front is a little high.

Nevertheless, I'm calling this a great success and will wear them to work.

(Lesson: I really really should shorten that front crotch and lengthen the back the next time. And work out how to slim down the legs without creating new wrinkles).

Then I made two tunic tops in a row. I used a Kwik Sew pattern. It is great, except for these things:

  • the seam allowance is 3 mm. That's crazy narrow, and obviously intended for sewer who overlock (serge)
  • It was way too big at the shoulders, yet fit fine everywhere else. So for the second top I cut a small in the shoulder and armscye then a medium elsewhere.
  • The sleeve would not fit into the armscye. Both times. This meant I had to take it in further at the sides in order for the sleeves to fit.
I do intend to put some photos up, but I just can't bring myself to ask the boy or TLM to take any more pictures of my backside.