Self-drafted pants redux

That’s such a boring title for this post, but I seem to be stumped. I decided it was time to revise a pattern I made from a pattern block, which I’ve been calling “my favourite tight pants”. It’s worked pretty well — I’ve made three pairs of front-fly pants from it, two of them with front pockets. But I’d been gradually cutting down the front waist and had finally gone too far, and I also wanted to make the legs skinnier. I thought I’d make a great wearable toile out of an old tablecloth someone gave me (that exit party again). I love the floral print, and the fabric had a really nice old and worn feel to it. So I redrew the pattern, deciding this time to just put in a back zip. I’m always going to wear tunics and long tops with it, so why bother with front detailing?

floralsback floralshorts

Oh shoot, this is an “om” pic. Oh well. You’ll notice from the pic that I didn’t finish the toile (see the pins in the waist facing?). This is because I sat down in them. (That’s the big test with tight pants, right?) Big problem. This fabric has no give whatsoever. None. Zip. Not with the grain, across the grain, or on the bias. Not a millimetre! So, it’s totally unwearable. Boo hoo.

But I did confirm that the pattern works with the new adjustments; I just needed fabric with some give. I decided to try something with 2 or 3 per cent lycra, which I have neither worked with, nor worn (except back in the ’80s when I had a pair of stretch jeans). I cut the fabric to the same size as the toile, but discovered I wanted to take the legs in a bit more. I used a really heavy twill for the facing and when the back gaped open a bit I added two smaller darts on either side of the zipper. I’m going to try that again I think, rather than always taking in the back seam. Here I’ve paired it with a white cotton shirt I made from burda6908.


I like white and beige together. Isn’t this a classic look? I feel so …. very …. Audrey Hepburn wearing this combo. This shirt is meant to be oversize, and the pattern offered three collar variations. I love the narrow, short-pointed version. I can wear the collar up without feeling like I walked out of some seventies tableau.

I think this is a “quietly” feminine look, but I can take it just “masculine of centre” really easily.

IMG_0962 IMG_0963

How I love androgyny. Even though I’m trying to widen the scope of my wardrobe, I do love looks that can swing both ways — a little feminine, a little masculine.

That vest is also self-drafted (I used a couple of shirt patterns), and the tie (pure silk) is pure Sally Ann. Oh, the hat, I bought it at a yard sale across the street the same day I took these pics. The owner assured me she bought it in New York.


7 thoughts on “Self-drafted pants redux”

  1. I rarely make trousers without a good dollop of Lycra in them as I like a slim fitting outline. You found out the hard way!! But you have made a great pair of pants (and a gorgeous shirt), and I agree the colour is a perfect neutral. White and stone – yes – perfect combo, especially with your marvellous hair.

    The colour and thickness of it is amazing and I think you should wear it loose more often and bring it into your outfits by including bright white, light silvery greys and cool neutrals. I might add some cooler bright shades (turquoise, blue pinks) to make it more interesting (I hope you don’t mind my suggestions), and some biggish silver jewellry with a squarish shape.


    1. I like soft light greys a lot, and am actually thinking of dying some white fabric to get that colour. I like practically all colours, you know, but some in the blue-red spectrum are high on the list. There’s a shade of lavendar, and another shade of violet I totally love, but they’re not often available. What’s a cool neutral? And why squarish jewellry? And thank you for your comments πŸ™‚


      1. A cool neutral would be one with a bluish rather than yellowish undertone – pure white (not cream), bluish grey, stone, navy, chocolate brown, and black.

        In terms of face shapes we tend to angularity or roundness, and it is good to link the jewellry shapes to the face shape.


      2. This is interesting because I know you’ve studied these things. I think pure white does nothing for me, but cream does. (I wear white shirts anyway because I love them) I love bluish greys and smokey blues, but when I wear navy nobody compliments me. I think navy just doesn’t work for me. I’ve switched to black which seems to work a lot better. And chocolate brown is good too. I will experiment with pendant shapes, and see what square does for me. Thanks for your comments.


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