Monday, September 8, 2014


Pants. Sewing pants has always been a fear of mine. The fly, the crotch depth, fitting hips and a the bum. How was I ever going to make pants that fit well and looked good. I imagined tedious nights stooped over my sewing machine, crying in front of the mirror once the third, forth or fifth muslin just didn't look right. But I was all wrong. Making pants is easy. I used Simplicity 4366 and the Palmer and Pletsch method from the book Pants for Real People. Basically, you cut out and pin the pattern pieces together, try them on and make adjustments to the tissue before you even think about looking at your fashion fabric.

I did not use the pattern tissue because I don't cut my patterns. Why don't I cut my patterns? Because then they are ruined forever. If you've cut the smallest size on a nested and graded pattern and you gain weight or want to make a bigger size for someone else, you are out of luck. Unless you have kept the scraps you cut off of the pattern you won't know where to add to the pattern to grade it up to the next size. Instead of cutting my patterns I use Swedish tracing paper. It is an amazing non-woven translucent fabric that can be drawn upon and also cut and sewn like fabric. The benefit of this wonderful stuff is that I can actually sew together the pattern once I've cut it out to see if it fits. This way I am not wasting time or energy or emotional strength making multiple muslins.

Back to my pants: The Palmer and Pletsch method really works. I only had to make minor adjustments to my pattern once I sewed it together. I have so much suiting fabric in my stash ready to sew. I see many, many pairs of pants in my future. The problem I came across was not in the difficult parts of hips, waist, bum fitting, but in the leg width. The first pair of pants were too wide. The second too narrow, but not narrow enough to be chic cigarette pants. The third pair of pants was just right. They look a bit baggy in the photos. The strange thing is that they day I finished them, they fit perfectly. The next day I wore them they were too big. It could be some sort of water retention situation, but I'm not complaining.

Here is the thing about pants that are made specially for you. They don't ride up. They don't slide down when you bend over or sit down. They stay in place. This is why I love sewing.

I made the sweater using McCalls M6612. I cut if off at the waist and added a band. I also shortened the collar (because I didn't have enough fabric the make it the full length.  I really like this pattern. I have already started to make the cowl neck version as a top. I made this top mostly on my serger. I love a project that can be completed in an evening. I also got to use my twin needle. Very exciting! I love the twin needle and am interested to use a triple needle soon.

Improved photography courtesy of the tripod I purchased for $20 off of Kijiji. Yay!


  1. Way to go! You have pants! Nice, so very nice! And I love your flower garden. Keep up the good work!!

    1. Thanks Linda. The pants were a lot of work and very time consuming- but now I have the pattern and can make pants like crazy!

  2. Thank you for sharing your success with us. I enjoy seeing what others sew that makes them happy :)