Not your usual WIP today, because today is about tracing and toiling and fitting. I had a list of new patterns to trace for the girls, one pair of trousers, a blouse, sweatshirt, mini skirt, coat and sleeveless top. I’ve got them all traced from their Burda magazines and decided to start with toiling the trousers and the coat first. The coat is on both girls’ lists, and I’ve been wanting to make it since I saw it in the February Burda last year!
The trousers are 101 from December 2017. Daughter No2 fell for the shape and the ruffle on the hem. The fabric chosen to make them up is from the stash, some dark stretch denim left over from a pair of Birkin Flares that I made for myself. I traced the 36 & 38 and toiled the 36, graded to the 38 over the hip. When the toile was tried on though, it wasn’t necessary, so I pinned it out and adjusted the pattern accordingly.
What we did need to do though was add pockets!! You need pockets, just like ladies love them in their dresses, we love them in trousers! So I drew an outline of where it would need to be directly on the toile while daughter no2 was still in them. She decided the angle, width and depth of the pocket and I drew around her hand.
The other adjustment I needed to make was to take a horizontal dart out of the trousers below the bum.
The pockets are welt pockets on a slight angle. The welt is 1cm finished depth, the pocket opening is 12.5cm. The pocket lining will be cut from a thinner, cotton fabric while the bag will be from the denim, so you only see denim when the pocket is opened. I rather like this sort of pocket in trousers, it’s nice and neat.
So if you’re worried about welt pockets, here’s how I made these, after the trouser toile was already fully constructed, which is not really ideal!
- Attach welt, 5mm seam allowance.
- Pin pocket bag right side down to attachment line.
- Sew exactly on the line, start and stop exactly in the corners.
- Cut through the pants halfway between each sewing line, cutting triangles at the ends and ensuring to snip to, but not through, the stitching.
- Turn pocket bag to the inside and press well, turn welt up and press seam allowance well.
- Ensure the triangles are pushed to the inside as well.
- Pin the pocket lining to the welt seam allowance.
- Stitch from the trouser side so you can see your original stitch line and stitch on that line or only just off it.
- Press well and close the pocket, either with pins or basting stitch.
- Pin the pocket lining to the bag.
- Stitch along stitch line.
- Moving the trouser piece out of the way to reveal the triangles, welt and pocket pieces below, stitch across the triangle and secure well.
- Sitch the pocket pieces together around the edge, ensure you secure the lower triangle and welt in the seam.
- Pin the top and sides of the pocket to the top and sideseams of the trouser pieces.
- Remove the pins and admire your new pocket!
I know a lot of people are scared of welt pockets, mostly because you have to cut through your fabric, and what if you’ve made a mistake!? The thing with these pockets is to be precise and careful. Make sure you mark very carefully the placement and or attachment lines onto the fabrics, using whichever method you prefer. The critical thing that I learnt was to be exact on the start and stop points, you have to mark those very clearly. It also helps to baste everything instead of relying on pins, because the fabric will still move. But they’re do-able! Practise on scrap fabrics until you’re more confident with your methods, but don’t avoid them, they look great!
Now I’m off to toile more patterns. I might even squeeze in another project for myself before the end of the month. I fancy a new shirt.