Textural trousers

When I found some textured, floral fabric at Our Social Fabric, which sells donated fabric for $1 – $3 CAD per metre, I thought I’d found the perfect material for another version of Burda’s Big Girl Play Pants. Then I changed my mind. Then I changed it back. I tried all kinds of other pieces of fabric, draping them over my arm, fondling them, folding them, trying to determine what would have the right amount of drape and heft. I think this is a real skill. You start with the uncut cloth, say two metres or so, and try to determine how it will behave in a much smaller pattern piece. I finally decided this fabric would not be too bulky for the project.

Burda’s pattern is for short pants with wide short legs. Last time I extended the wide legs, and then experimented with off-kilter long darts to narrow the legs. This time I altered the paper pattern, adding a 7″ wide strip to the bottom of the pattern, in line with the outer leg seam. Then I redrew the inseam . I admit I drew it freehand.


I’m pretty happy with the result. It matches pretty closely to what I envisioned when I first bought the pattern, planning to alter it.


I don’t have a whole lot to wear with them at this time. They’re the colour of water, a colour I totally love, and cream.



I had a set of small fabric samples, about 4×5 inches, made of superfine linen. Two of them are shades of aqua, so I used them to make back pockets. I lined them with a bit of turban cotton to give them an appropriate body.


The fabric is natural, and pretty coarse. It’s either cotton or maybe cotton and hemp. The weave is pretty open, which is why it’s not too bulky. I like the muted floral design. The other side of it is pretty nice too, but I thought this was the correct side to use.


I had one more square of linen that I pinned to the front waistband as a (Japanese-inspired???) bit of frou-frou. It serves no useful function. And I’m still debating whether to add belt loops. It looks nice with a belt? What do you think?

I know my taste can be a bit bonkers sometimes, and these pants aren’t for everyone, but I do see this style from time to time in a fashion mag, or a Hollywood celebrity mag, and I always perk up when I do, and think “I like those pants!” So, for better or for worse, this is what I’ll be wearing this fall.

I’ve been reviewing what I made this summer. By my count I made 5 pairs of pants, one pair of shorts, three long sleeved woven tops, two woven shells, and 8 or 9 teeshirts. Most items go with most other items, so it’s a good wearable wardrobe. I’m now going to do the same for the cooler months of the year. This is the first item. I’m working on another couple of pairs of trousers, which I’ll post about as soon as I’m done 🙂


8 thoughts on “Textural trousers”

  1. Am so glad you find these comfortable, and you’ve gotten a hack you’re pleased with! Personally, I never have liked belts, but that’s just moi. 😉 Seems to cut you in half, which the darker tee also emphasises. But them’s just my thoughts, so add lots of salt! 😊


  2. I tried the Sandra Betzina Harem pant pattern and found it very awkward to wear. I’m not a fa n of all that fabric between the legs. After wearing them for a while, how do you find them?i do like the belt. You’ve accomplished a lot of sewing this summer!


    1. I’ve been wearing the first pair I made quite a lot. I find them completely comfortable for standing, walking and sitting. If I need to do other things, physically, then I need to change. Thanks for commenting!


  3. I like these, but I like drop crotch/ harem pants. I find that this pants style are not only comfortable, but with the right fabric drape they are also slimming on me.
    I have enjoyed viewing your sewing creations,


  4. I particularly admire these pants with the pale neutral top, the colors flatter your hair! Made the Sandra Betzina harem pants in a lovely linen and they are for me very cool and wearable in our muggy heat. These are a more dramatic style by far, but seeing them here I’m tempted.



    1. Thank you ceci. I just went to search online for the Sandra Betzina harem pants, and found a whole lot of great different varieties of harem pants. Wow! Have you checked out pinterest?


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