The Continuing Tale of the Pink Cord Pants

It’s rainy and dark here- hence the flashy indoor photos.  Nothing to do for it! We’re still farm-sitting, which means I only have the sewing supplies I brought out here with me.

This length of no-wale stretch cotton corduroy came farm-sitting with me.  I have a mini-skirt made of a different color of the same fabric and it’s the *perfect* bottom-weight fabric.  It’s heavy, a little plushy, with just enough stretch to hug my body.

And most importantly- it’s pink for this week’s Sew Weekly Challenge.  I am 100% determined to make the Sunday night deadline this week if it kills me.

This is my rendering of an idea I had to cut a pair of bootcut pants with seaming detail.  I’m fascinated by the use of nap as a design feature, and had the idea to play with the lines and nap, with a few pockets tucked into the seaming.  I even started drafting the pattern pieces when I realized I didn’t have an invisible zipper.

No one has an invisible zipper within 45 or so miles.  I called around, I asked Carol (who used to live and sew in this area- thanks, Carol!), and eventually I wandered into the nearest town to scope out a knitting shop I heard “might” have regular nylon dress zippers.  They did.  When I asked at the counter if they had any invisible zippers, the proprietress told me it will be invisible “depending on how you sew it in.”

Right.  I paid for the zipper and counted myself lucky to have it.  My weird pieced design does not include a fly and I think it would throw off the balance of the seamlines.  Neither did I want to do a lapped zipper, nor an exposed zipper if I didn’t have a metal one to work with.  Blast.

As they say, back to the drawing board.  Or rather, the Pinterest board, where I spent some time staring at this Burda Magazine (December 2009) illustration and reading up about Kayy The Sewing Lawyer’s experience with the pants.  She loves them.  I especially like the front seaming, and check out the way the back yoke runs into the front “princess” seams.  Wicked.  We have a winner.

I did not have a zipper- but I had my own pants block and my bootcut leg templates ready to go.  I drew in the “princess” lines and a front fly, then cut my pattern along the line.  When I cut the fabric, I added the seam allowances to the fabric rather than my pattern.  Because I’m kind of lazy.

I cut the pants with the nap running down (which means when I “pet” downwards along my pants leg, it feels smooth.  This gives a richer color than when the nap runs “up”).  I wasn’t game to make a mess of my lovely fabric in case the contrast nap idea turned out to be a bad one.

Once I carved out the back yoke (making sure it would meet the top of my front princess seam), I decided to fold out the dart.   First, I cut along one of the dart legs, through the entire pattern piece.

Then I overlapped the dart legs, eliminating the dart and changing the shape of the yoke.

When I laid the back yoke pattern piece above the lower back pants piece, you can see where the dart moved!  It’s not on the yoke anymore, but in the seamline.  It’s neater.  I haven’t decided if I need back pockets, I’ll see what happens when I get into the sewing.

I do want front pockets, preferably of the patch variety.  You know I love front patch pockets.  I may fold one edge under, I may turn it so the nap shows up.  Like this one.

Or I may leave them perfectly circular and turn them so the nap doesn’t shine so brightly.  What do you think?

After some rummaging, I turned up the perfect circle template- a kids’ Bunnikins plate that is larger than a saucer and smaller than a salad plate.  Just right.

What do you think?  Any pocket advice?  Do you like the circular pocket with the curved seaming, or is it too much?  And what about that other design, would it make a cool pair of jeans in a month or two?


  1. No pocket advice – I’m still laughing about your adventure to the knitting shop. Do they need someone to teach sewing down there?? I hope your farm-sitting and duck play continues well :)

  2. lol, go the “invisible” zip!
    as for the circular pockets, I’d be worried they’d make by derrière look rounder than it already is…. I’d go hexagon maybe?

    • Well, they’re going on the front…. The back just has a funny yoke.. It might be ok, but I might just as easily stick the pockets on the front and think “where’s my seam ripper?”

    • It’s fun! Amelia Bloomer? (I know she was a weirdo though…) I’ve seen some charming cycling bloomer-knickerbocker things, but then they weren’t really considered ladylike I suppose…

      • I’ve actually consicdered making some bloomers but Victorian ones were pretty loose (likely draw-string) affairs. I think I could handle those. They didn’t take off. Probably had the same reaction that see through dresses have now. A few women try them but the vast majority of us are horrified at the idea of them! The only difference is bloomer ladies were convinced of the health benefits and comfort of bloomers….I don’t think anyone believes see through dresses are healthy and comfortable.

  3. The version with the nap running opposite to the pants are REALLY bright. Might just be the photo, but I’m not sure if I’m a fan. But then, I don’t really want to draw attention to that area of my body. Based on your original sketch, that’s not a problem with you, eh? lol!

    I do like how big those pockets are though! Perfect. :)

  4. These are going to be great! I like the pocket variation with one edge turned down and the nap going the opposite direction. (Btw, the contributors’ faq page says the deadline is Monday so, you have an extra day if you need it :-) )

    I do think the other design would make great jeans too!

  5. circular pockets!! they couldn’t be better. In my experience they’re not very pratical, but so lovely to look at :) I really like the pocket details on the burda trousers

  6. I love the idea of circular pockets, but I agree with Sophie; they probably won’t hold much. I’d love to see your jeans design and I have fabric ready to make them in.

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