Friday, July 25, 2014

Make it Perfect Pattern Parade - the Essential Shorts (as pants)

The lovely Toni Coward of Make it Perfect Patterns asked The Drapery to be part of her Pattern Parade. So today we're showing off one of her patterns and giving one of our readers the chance to win a Make It Perfect pdf pattern of their choice. A very warm welcome to any new readers who may be encountering The Drapery for the first time via the Pattern Parade. You can read more about us here.

First up was choosing a favourite pattern. Toni is a mum of four and has produced an extensive range of patterns for babies, boys, girls and grownup women, many of which we are delighted to sell in our shop. Truthfully the women's Poppy Tunic is probably my favourite - when Toni released the pattern it was one of those must make now moments for me - but since I have made three (this is my favourite) I really didn't need another one! Another Make It Perfect pattern I adore is the Sprout (ever since I saw it made up here - beware, cuteness) but I have no little girl recipients to make it for, boo. I finally settled on the new Essential Shorts pattern, which I was curious to try lengthened into pants.

For fabric, I reached for my favourite standby, natural linen. Visitors to our shop may have seen these pants hanging in our front window - it's been rather too cold around here for breezy linen legs! Their day will come soon enough.

To lengthen, I simply added onto the existing leg pattern pieces, extending straight down.

The result is just what I was looking for: casual linen pants that are loose and comfortable, but not too baggy. The shape is great - they are meant to be fairly slim-fitting and the flat front and topstitched pockets help prevent excess fabric pouffiness where you wouldn't want it. Bias bound pockets? Me likey. Topstitching that pocket curve with contrast thread would make for a really nice detail but I chose to keep these unadorned. I topstitched the side and rise seams in regular matching thread just for added strength.

I needed something very plain to wear on top, so the pants could star in these photos. This here is my third Plantain top, from some oh-so-soft cream organic cotton interlock we have in the shop. I wanted to try a contrast woven for the elbow patches, as inspired by lovely local Cate, and this Liberty apple print seemed just right.

Before I cut into the linen, I made a muslin of the Essential Shorts from from old bedsheet fabric, trying the Size L as my measurements indicated. Whilst I could pull them on, there was zero ease (I'll spare you the photos of that) so I sized up to XL for the end result. I actually contacted Toni to query the sizing and she was great about it. It's a new pattern so although she has testers work with it in most sizes, she hasn't had a large volume of feedback about it. I would be interested to hear from anyone else who has tried this pattern in the bigger sizes. My feeling is that the measurements for the L and XL correspond to finished garment, not body measurements. Or am I in denial about the size of my forty-something rear end, ahem? Ah, the things we post in the name of sharing sewing information.

Yo internets, does my butt look big in... oh never mind.
If I was to make this pattern again I would probably add about an inch to the height of the back rise for a bit more coverage when bending over, you know how it goes. But otherwise I really like where these sit on the low waist.

Toni's instructions for completing the waistband with elastic back and front drawstring are excellent and I totally stole the method when making pyjama pants recently.

Thanks for including us in your Pattern Parade, Toni!

For your chance to win a Make It Perfect pdf pattern, leave a comment below. We'll pick a winner by random number selection in a week's time.

Check out all the other lovely makes by talented folks in the Make It Perfect Pattern Parade:

- Jane & Fiona xx




15 comments:

  1. Oh, these look GREAT!!! Although I have to say, if you, my dear, are an XL, that says to me that the pattern size range is on the WAY small size! I mean, what the what? You know, I was just complementing my coworker's breezy white linen pants today (casual friday) and thinking, I need some of those! Yours are the perfect sewn version!

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  2. Your pants are making me crave warm summer breezes! It's cold here right now. I've made Toni's Poppy Tunic for me and now have an order for one from my daughter. It's a great pattern. Thanks for sharing. Thinking of Summer has me wanting to try Toni's shearwater kaftan. It would look great with those linen pants!

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  3. Wow. I have been eyeing the essential shorts, dreaming of summer. I also have had grand ideas to make them into pants! They look awesome and love the bound pockets. I will have to start getting organised and choose a colour of linen and get that pattern....though would LOVE to win it. :) I have only one pattern from Toni and it is a good one, the A+ skirt. Looking forward to actually making pants that fit and a useful part of my wardrobe.

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  4. Wow! These are fantastic! I love them as pants!

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    1. P.S. the listing says they run small so it's not just you. :)

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  5. They look lovely. I haven't really looked at the pattern as I am not really a shorts girl but now I will have to another look.

    I love Toni's patterns and am just finishing a Shearwater kaftan for my daughter for summer and about to cut out a mini Poppy tunic for her too.

    I haven't ever considered the Poppy tunic for myself but your versions have inspired me to have another look at that pattern too.

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  6. Yep-I've made a few of her patterns before too-love them! I've made lots of flipsy skirts for my girls, reversible bucket hat etc. But I'd love to make the shorts for myself!!

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  7. Ahh how I love linen and these look perfect. I am such a fan of Toni's patterns but can always do with more of them.

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  8. These look really comfy! The linen is really lovely too :) I've made my boys and my nieces the make it perfect pyjamas but I have to say this shorts pattern really tempting me to make something for myself!

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  9. Ooooh! I have a piece of linen in my stash that would be perfect for this pattern.

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  10. Hmm I like! I wear trousers a lot but have never ventured making any but pyjama's, I think I'd like to give these a try. Muslin making is a must though especially when I'm in denial about my rear!

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  11. Love your linen pants! When I first saw this pattern I was imagining navy linen shorts... probably ones that don't fit! Does the pattern have any widen here marks, as I really liked how this pattern as a flat front?

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    1. Thanks - and yes navy linen shorts would be lovely in this pattern! There are no markings for widening but it could be a nice simple pattern to try slash-and-spread grading up?

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  12. LOVE your linen pants! they came out soo good. thanks for the giveaway!

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  13. These look great. I recently tried improvising a pattern for some linen pants, which have now been stashed on the ‘disasters to deal with later’ pile. This pattern looks like just what I need!

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