Today, I’ve been making trousers. When the November issue of the Burda magazine finally landed in my sticky little paws, I wasn’t exactly inspired – not as much as I have been with previous issues. But one or two patterns did look appealing. I rather liked the trousers 117. I just happened to have a length of russet coloured stretch denim a friend sent me from the States… It was meant to be!
The pattern requires fabric with stretch, but doesn’t say what percentage. However, as one of the views was made in jersey, I figure it needs a fair bit. My denim had that fair bit, so I decided to wing it and see what happened. I’ll not go into fitting and toiling details here, I cut the 44 and shortened the leg length by 4cm.
The trousers in the magazine have a decorative ribbon down the outside leg seam and piping in the waistband, the jersey version has piping on the waistband. Initially I thought this was just a sewn on detail, but the outer waistbands are actually in two pieces, an upper and lower. So now you have somewhere to stick that piping! I wasn’t going to bother, I figured I’d just use the inner waistband pieces and cut two of each, but… I had piping in the stash, so might as well use some of it up in a practical manner.
I didn’t follow the order of work in the instructions. By the way, has anyone else noticed there is no longer a cutting layout? It was there in the October magazine, but “poof” no more! I started with the fronts, overlocked the edges and made up the hip yoke pockets. I used a left over piece of Liberty poplin for the inner pocket bag to reduce bulk. I’ve used that left over piece quite a bit now, I wonder if it will ever get finished! The pocket bag is understitched along the opening edge to keep the cotton from rolling out. Once the pockets were done, I sewed the centre front seam from the top edge to just above where the crotch curve starts.
Then it was the back pieces. Darts first, then pocket. I realised, when tracing out the pieces, that the welt on the back was faux, just for show! Now I don’t know about you, but if I’m going to all the trouble of interfacing and cutting my trousers to insert a welt, I want a pocket to go with it!! So that’s what I did. I like to put my phone in my back pocket, that’s where it basically lives. So I measured it and cut two rectangles from the poplin the width of the pocket welt and the depth of the phone plus a few centimetres. Basically 14×18. Then I cut two welt pieces, one to use for the actual welt, and one to sew to the top of one of the rectangles as a facing. I made the welt pocket up as standard. I’m quite chuffed with it, it’s the perfect size for my phone, but if you want to use it for anything else, you’d better make yours a little wider, add a cm each side of the opening and all pieces.
Once that was done I sewed the centre back seam as I had done the front, then moved on to the waistband pieces. The piping was added to the upper seamline of the lower waistband, then the upper waistband was sewn on top. I graded the seams to reduce bulk and clipped to allow the curve to lie flat. When I clip a curved seam, I always do it on the bias, the theory is that the fabric won’t fray or rip on the bias. If you cut with the grain, it might rip through your stitching. Not that I’ve had that happen in the past, but just in case, right? I made up the front and back waistbands and then attached them to their trouser legs. Then I inserted the invisible zip in the left side seam. It needed a little fiddling to make sure the piping and waistband edge lined up, because of the bulk it wanted to move down when I sewed, so I ended up unpicking a couple of times, and using loads of pins!
After that it was all downhill, the remainder of the leg seams were stitched and pressed, the inner wiastband pieces interfaced with a lightweight fusible and sewn to the top of the outer pieces. I understitched the waistband and trimmed the lower edge before folding the remaining seam allowance under and stitching in the ditch from the outside. Then it was just the hems and voila!! One new pair of trousers! I do like that piping detail, it’s just a pity no-one will really see it. I don’t tuck my tops in, so the only people to see that detail will be you guys now, and me later!
I’ll be sure to get photos asap, along with pictures of my new tees! Yesterday I ran up two stripey 3/4 sleeve Lark tees, the perfect colours to go with these new pants. I am really looking forward to having these pants in my wardrobe, just like the paprika linen pants I made in the summer! It’s nice to have that splash of colour to play with in amongst the blues, back and greys.
P.S. I have finished both coats for the girls, and I hope to have photos of those, modelled by the girls themselves (instead of on Betty the dummy) in a week or two. In the mean time, I now have all I need to get cracking with the coat I’ve been promising to make for Mr W for over a year. Tomorrow, I start cutting out!!! Wish me luck…
21 thoughts on “Work in Progress Wedesday”
Such beautifully tailored pants. Lovely.
That waistband piping is pretty neat. I’m glad you went for it.
Me too! I’m not sure about doing the version with ribbon all down the outside leg though.
I enjoy reading about your makes, and love seeing them. They are always so nice! (thanks for sharing about Burda etc. Our Canadian distributor ‘disappeared’ or ‘shut down’ as they said in early September, and we all lost out on our outstanding issues)
Oh no, that’s not on!! I suppose it’s too expensive to get someone to send the Burdas to you from elsewhere?
Great color and they look so tailored.
Thanks! I’m loving this pop of colour in my otherwise neutral wardrobe!
Very neat sewing! I love the piping detail in the waistband, I might steal that idea at some point 😉
Go for it! It would work well in a shirt cuff too…
looking great – and isn’t it satisfying to make a welt pocket in a nice crisp fabric like that?
Yes! 🙂 I love fabrics that sit still when they’re told to.
Do I see correctly that there is a crossing of the piping and invisible zipper? I would very much hesitate to do that, how does it behave? My zippers still tend to get visible when crossing with a seam and all that bulk would make it even worse.
I make sure I trim the seam allowances ruthlessly, and make sure the zip is sewn really close to the teeth. That way there’s no pulling and exposure of the zip. Try really trimming, and press well to flatten what seam allowances you have left.
Very nice. I agree with your assessment of making false pockets. Why would you go to the bother if it can’t be used?!
Precisely! Cutting open of one’s fabric should only be done when necessary, and a useless pocket is extremely unnecessary! 😉
Lovely details. I’ve bought trousers before then realised that the welts don;t open, so no pocket – what’s the point? Good call on adding real, useable pockets. And they’re perfect.
Thank you very much! 🙂 I need pockets in my trousers, dresses, etc. Otherwise, where am I supposed to put my hands, phone, keys, small change??
That welt is SHARP! A beautiful pair of trousers! Any idea where your friend found the denim? It’s a great color.
Thanks! I have a feeling it was Joann’s.