I Made Pants!

I was still a bit high after finishing Anda when I started my next project. Simplicity 4097 has been in my collection for several years now, just biding it's time. And I've really been in desperate need of jeans. The thing is, jean/pant shopping is almost worse for me than swim suit shopping. My waist is generally a size or two smaller than my hips, which means than for a pair of pants to accommodate my backside, they usually gape at the waist. Then there are my short legs, which usually require me to cuff or shorten pants, leaving the pants looking slightly out of proportion. And, that's all if I can even find a style to suit my taste. So, I dug out my pattern and some denim from my stash, and went to work.

(What?! I know you wanted to see the back! Don't even try to deny it!)

To start, I traced the pattern, grading the waist down 1 size from the hips. Then I cut out my pieces - only 4! - and set it all aside as I headed to Ryan's softball game. (To which I wore Anda and boasted about my new project. Shameless!) The next morning, I nearly jumped out of bed and started sewing straight away. In just a couple of hours, I had a pant-shaped garment needing only a zipper, a waist, and a hem. As I didn't have a zipper on hand, I again set the project aside. Before doing so, I tried on the almost-pants and was ecstatic to discover that they seemed to fit!
(This ribbon is really lovely. Bright summery flowers reminiscent of Indian Paisley patterns.)

The following morning, I was again out of bed and at the sewing machine, new zipper in hand. Slowly, I worked the zipper in (I really need and adjustable zipper foot!) and then finished the waist. The pattern omits a waist band, instead calling for twill tape to face and reinforce the waist. I decided to substitute this really cute grosgrain ribbon from my stash. After getting it all squared away, I decided that the zig-zagged edges of fabric didn't look finished enough, so I pressed the seam allowances under and stitched them down. Much better.

(I'm really proud of those seams, and of my darts!)

Finally, I pinned the hems in place. They're 3" deep, a testament to my short legs. I like the deep hem, though.
The pants sit just below my waist, and zip at the side, so no awkward bunching of the waistband or zipper. Don't you just hate that? As you can see, above, I didn't bother with pockets. Briefly, I considered adding patch pockets, but then discarded the idea. For once, I managed to resist my urge to embellish!

The pattern instructions were super easy to follow - Simplicity indeed! I'll definitely be making more of these in other fabrics. (And probably the jumper and blouse.) My success here also makes me more excited to try other pants patterns. There are several in my collection of Burda Magazines which have caught my eye, most of which are described as Marlene Deitrich-style. Also, I love this pair, recently featured on BurdaStyle, but am not sure the pleated pockets would be a wise choice for me. The button-fly and corset waist are fantastic, though.

Oh, and before we wrap up today, here is a gratuitous kitty photo. Holly likes to hang out nearby while I sew. Often, she settles herself into the sewing machine case. She can keep a good eye on my from there!


  1. Very impressing that you are able to sew a pant! It is very well fitting and that flowerribbon is a very cute detail.

  2. Hey Melissa!

    I just went to Simplicity and bought a pattern to make pants, because you, my friend, are such an inspiration! Be ready for some questions! I don't understand why pants are so hard to make!!!



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