Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Cake Patterns 'Espresso' Leggings

Leggings, leggings, leggings. If these two pairs look a  little rumpled and well-loved, it's because they have been in constant rotation all throughout the colder months. This is a fabulous pattern that we've been waiting a long time to share with you because of some shipping mishaps. Meanwhile my test pairs of leggins have been tested, and tested, and tested! (And passed with flying colours!)

 Cake Patterns is the creation of Stephanie Cousins, a US expat living in Brisbane. She is very dedicated to creating wearable, comfortable clothing patterns for a wide range of women's shapes and sizes.

The Espresso Leggings are custom-fit, meaning you follow the instructions to take a bunch of your own measurements, plot them on the pattern and 'connect-the-dots' to create your own personalised pattern piece. This means a great fit that should hug but not constrict in all the right places and won't have you hitching up and readjusting all day long.

The instructions for sewing up the leggings are excellent, right down to the suggestion to use a piece of ribbon as a tag for the back so you can instantly put them on the right way.

  • When measuring yourself for the front and back rise heights, you'll be sitting on a chair as instructed. Measure from the point on your body straight down to the chair seat. Don't follow the curve of your body.
  • After your first pair you may want to tweak your pattern piece a little to perfect the fit. I found my front rise a little high and the back rise a little low so adjusted that to suit.
  • We have recently stocked up on some 1.5" wide soft knitted elastic which is a great option for a very comfortable waistband. This is wider than recommended for the pattern so you may need to add a bit of height when you cut the top of your leggings pieces.

This pattern makes it so easy to whip up custom-fit leggings of any length. 3/4 length under skirts and dresses is great for our current 'in-between' weather!

I've sewn this pattern on a regular machine with zigzag stitch and a ballpoint needle, and with an overlocker, both of which worked equally well.

Some fabric suggestions:
These Art Gallery Fabrics cotton/spandex knits:
 Ripples in Charcoal
Navy & White Tomahawk Stripe
Flutter Folds in Spark
These organic options:
Soy/Organic Cotton/Spandex in Coffee Bean  (as seen in top photo, back pair)
Soy/Organic Cotton/Spandex in Gull
Australian-Made Organic Cotton/Spandex in Charcoal

With the width of these fabrics, you'll generally only need about a metre for a pair of leggings. Once you discover how easy it is, you won't stop at just one pair!

- Jane & Fiona xx

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