OK, I promised you some finished garments. Here’s something for you to get your eyes around.
Don’t ask me what my inspiration was. I have no idea. It certainly wasn’t these guys …
But when you see mine, you could be forgiven for thinking that I am channeling them. I’m trying to think why I bought this pattern, Vogue 8836 & all I can think was that the photo used gave an aura of style: wide legged pants, high waist.
Source Vogue Patterns
And it reminded me of one of the outfits worn in Coco before Chanel when they are by the sea, (& I’ve vague memories of such trousers & a Breton shirt) but scour the webs as I might, I cannot find it. Maybe I am deluded. But I guess outfit inspiration for this post in general comes from the film. Bear in mind that the pattern envelope surely crushes all illusions of style:
It took all my abilities to focus on the original photo to convince myself that it was worth a go. I’d bought some warm flannel type fabric from, yes, you’ve guessed it Birmingham Rag Market specifically for these trousers. It’s grey with a kind of herringbone woven into it. I’d been thinking that I’d make them as a winter weight & decide whether they would be suitable for nautical style in spring/ summer weight. I kind of fancy some chino type trousers in navy or petrol blue.
Note, the pattern says “Easy”. What? Trousers that are easy to sew? How can that be? Well let me tell you that they are loose fitting, pleated at the waist. Get the waist fitting correctly with adequate room at your hips & this type of trousers hangs beautifully. No need for faffing with crotch length/ depth as they are designed for a looser fit.
OK, so if they are looser fit does that mean that they have the potential to enlarge rather than accentuate one’s curves? I guess in theory, if they hang nicely & you’ve got enough room in your hips, but snug enough without pulling the pocket, they should just create a different but flattering silhouette? I’m still a bit unsure myself because I’ve made these as per packet & tissue pattern. The legs are soooooo wide that I am not sure what shoes to wear with them. They have to be flat for me, but robust enough that they don;t get swallowed up by the trouser leg monster. [This may justify a new shoe purchase you realise 😉 ]
I’ve been wearing them at home & they are so cosy & easy to wear. The pleats can easily mask post pig-out bloating. The fabric is like two large tubes of blanket encasing my stick legs. Or maybe wearing a skirt on each leg perhaps?
I think I’m brave enough to wear them out in public to work. They just feel so very *wide*. If I had the right shoes I would try it. The shoes I’m wearing in the photos are desperate. I wore them just down the road to the shop (so no more than a mile in total) & they rip my heels, even with socks. (Not a smart move the day before a half marathon let me tell you).
OK, I’ve kind of talked about them in reverse order. What about the making? They really are simple. The fly front is explained very well & that is potentially your trickiest manoeuvre. Everything else is straight up & down with a curvy central seam joining the two legs up. Turn-ups too are pretty straightforward – just extra big hems.
The pockets & roominess of these trousers “at top” are inviting for hands that don’t know what to do. I felt myself walking around with warmer hands thrust inside. I used a “swimmers” remnant from my shirtdress to line the pockets. Very pleasing to see it in the winter.
There are fake pockets on the back – these are just flaps, but do serve to break up an expanse of butt – helps with the illusion of a smaller behind I’m told. I used shell heart buttons.
I experimented this time with interfacing. I took a risk primarily out of laziness & needing a break from fusible interfacing. I used self fabric to interface the waistband & pocket flaps. I seemed to prefer hand sewing it in rather than running the gauntlet with some fusible interfacing that I just knew was going to misbehave (this clairvoyance is a new skill). Whilst it worked well in providing more robust flaps/ waistband, I’d have to say that even with clipping corners it’s still more of a bulky finish (call me Sherlock too).
I’ve added this pic as it shows how much *room* there is at the top. It’s clearly a way of wearing trousers that I need to get used to. Kind of Chaplinesque …
I have to say though that I will be tempted to make more of these trousers. Maybe I’ll slim them down a bit. I can’t imagine any mariner worth his salt would want bell bottoms quite this wide …as Gary inferred, they must be fashionable because they are not practical. (Not that “fashionable” is my requirement, but you know what I’m saying!)
Anyone else made these? What have your experiences been? Different fabrics?