The “Sitting on the Stoop” Pants
Fabric: 2 1/2 yards yarn dyed Essex linen-cotton blend from B&J Fabrics, $37
Pattern: Simplicity 2367, View A
Notions: invisible zip, interfacing
Time to complete: about 6 hours
First worn: 5/5
Wear again: yes
Total cost: about $38
These pants look like a total yawn, sorry! With two pairs of unwearable pants under my belt and one fairly successful Clover (but we’ll talk about Clover issues another day), I’m happy to be yawning and not tearing my hair out. Since I got a good fit with the shorts (View D) in this pattern, I was optimistic about the pants, even though they use different pattern pieces. I checked the pattern with my fresh pants block from the Consulting Dressmaker. Wow, did I learn a lot about crotch curves working on that thing. If you want to understand more about pants fit and construction, that is the way to go. I didn’t totally follow the Consulting Dressmaker’s guidelines for using the block as an alteration tool– I lined up the grain lines and the top corner of the inseam instead of the waist because I wasn’t confident I would get the waistlines right– so I very nervously cut into the back crotch curve of my pattern. The front pattern piece matched my block. And the pants fit perfectly. There are a lot of wrinkles– this is linen, after all– but they aren’t fitting wrinkles.
I looked to the pants my grandma and grandpa are wearing in this photo for inspiration. I was going for leisure wear workhorse pants, though not in polyester or baby blue. That’s my sister on my grandma’s lap and me in the background. Even though I didn’t do my mom’s look, I love it, and I’m thoroughly impressed by her here, all trim and stylish just a few months after my sister was born. I don’t remember her with a perm like this; she always had frosting and smoothed out the curl.
With the pants, I avoided previous mistakes by pre-washing and drying the fabric three times and overcoming my tendency to hem too short. The more time I spend with the nubbly black color, the more it reminds me of the 80s, though, and not in a good way. I hope I’ll find the way to wear these that doesn’t set those associations going. Linen is tough and I did some serious finishing, so these could last a long time. I did flat felled seams on the inseam and turned and sewed the side seams and the crotch seam. I know that’s not the best way to finish the crotch seam, but what is? You have to do all those clips, how do you finish that?
I wish I looked more comfortable in the photos, but I was sitting on an acquaintance’s stoop, without her knowledge, while she and her family were home. Actually, that’s not too weird– is it?; I think it’s just the camera in general that makes me go all stiff. Maybe by the end of the month, after posing every day for me-made-May, I’ll be slightly more at ease in front of the camera. I can dream.