It's about exploring and sharing my creative adventures (mostly sewing these days) ~
~those activities that sometimes obsess, usually inspire, occasionally frustrate
~and always provide a delightful maze to wander through.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

LaFred Lives On! (Thalia Pants)

Finally, I made it back to the sewing room for an actual sewing project!  :D

I've been drawn to this pattern since the first time I saw it - fits right in with my usual attraction to patterns that look oh-so-smashing on tall, willowy models, and, um, not-so-smashing on someone of my stature. Sometimes I decide I'll make it work anyway.
The end result ~  Slimming?  Not so much.  Comfy?  Absotively!
Dress up or down?  Yes and Yes.   Easy to make?  Another Yes!
All in all....a winner :)

Just for fun, I tried to duplicate the pose this model made.
Can't be done.  Well, not by me anyway.
Go ahead.  I dare you.  Try it.
One of the reasons it took me so long to make this pattern is that I thought it was going to be complex.  You know.  Trousers.  Fitting.  Details.  Then I pulled out the pattern & looked through the instructions, I was surprised at how utterly simple the construction was.   And with the loose fit, it looked like a (relatively) quick & easy project.   And I had reached the point with The Koos Coat that I needed to make a soup & salad meal so that I could take a break from the 7 course preparation...sometimes you just need easy to get the mojo working again!

Other reviews all mentioned the MASSIVE ease around the hips, so I made up a quick muslin in a Medium - my waist & hips actually placed me in between a Med & Lg.   The muslin was still too baggy, so I re-cut it in a Small, which felt fine.

A note about the length - the pattern is SHORT.   REALLY short.  I have short legs, & the length is just about right on me.  Be forewarned before you cut!  

There's not much to say about the pattern instructions or construction - it's really all pretty straightforward; instructions are thorough & easy to understand.    I made some minor changes in the fit around the waist by leaving a smaller SA at the side seams, and also making the pleats a bit smaller - essentially making the waist about 1.5" wider.  The waist is gathered in the back with two pieces of elastic.   Fred made a note to add both elastic pieces at once through the two channels, which I did, using two large-eyed, blunt-nosed needles, like so:

The closure consists of 2 buttons, with buttonholes sewn into pleats on either side of CF.  
You can either sew your buttonholes through both layers of the fabric forming the pleat, as I did, or you can sew separate buttonholes in each fabric layer (for a total of 4).  If you sew the pleats together with the buttonholes, you need to make sureyou can pull the pants on over your hips!  Now, I have wide hips.   (which seem to be getting wider as the years pass.....but I digress.....)   I really really did NOT want to make 4 buttonholes - not because I'm lazy (even though I can be), but because I wanted the neater look that sewing the pleats together would give.  By making the pleats a bit narrower, which resulted in the waistband being bigger, I was able to do the buttonholes the way I wanted & still get the pants on & off easily.

A note about the pattern markings:  don't worry about making all of them  when you cut your fabric.   It's nice to have the option to change your closure placements anyway, for a custom fit.

Vintage buttons from stash.
The waistband seam has an odd, wavy look here -
I think it was the way I was standing.  It's not a badly sewn seam - really, honest!

I wanted the pants a bit on the long side, to be worn with heels (my version of a heel...which is not 4"...or even 3", for that matter).   This leaves them a bit long for flats, but I'll wear them for awhile before making any changes.
With heels
With Flats

Side View

Back View
(My shoulders are NOT that lopsided -
it's a downside of using the camera remote instead of a friend)
Other notes:  I think a drapey fabric is a must for this pattern - I love the feel of the flow as I walk in these pants.  I used a midweight tencel with a very soft hand - perfect for this pattern!  I used Pro-Woven Fusible interfacing from fashionsewingsupply on the waistband - not too crisp, not too wimpy.

A fun, easy project - I would make them again if the right fabric for them jumped out at me :)

BTW, the blouse is Decades of Style Collar Perfection - (pre-blog - it's reviewed here on Pattern Review) - the second thing I made after re-entering the sewing world.  Gosh, it's been almost two years now.....  I struggled a lot with it, because of all of the alterations I attempted.  It came out fine in the end, but I've come a long ways since then.

And now it's time to get back to Koos!   The good news is that I've finally decided how I'm going to do the next step.   I think......


Andrea said...

Massive hip ease? Sounds like my kinda pattern!
The pants turned out great and look great as well. The blouse is lovely. That neckline is pretty on you.

Sherril said...

These came out great, and I think they are very flattering. The blouse is great too, thanks for including the pattern for it.

Mary said...

There is that much coveted ginkgo fabric! I love both the pants and the blouse. You look ready for a trip downtown.

Karin said...

You are small and willowy! These aren't "skinny jeans" but they look nice on you. They are more flattering than you think, imo. We haven't seen a fuller pant silhouette in a while, and maybe our eyes aren't used to it yet. I think they are very elegant.

Unknown said...

These pants look marvelous on you! Very Catherine Hepburn:) Perfect fabric choice and the color should make them so useful and versatile. Glad to see you are back in the sewing room

gwensews said...

Those pants look terrific on you. They remind me of the "Hepburn" pant by LoesHinse. Very Hollywood glamour!

yarndiva said...

Very nice, I am inspired. It's nice to hear about how your figure is and how it relates to the patterns you make, this being a great example. I too am attracted to patterns that look good on willowy young models so it's helpful to hear how people bridge the gap between the picture and the reality.

Jillybejoyful said...

Hee hee Andrea - truth is, I think these pants would work on many different figures, and they certainly could be flattering (& comfy!) on large hips!
Thank you to everyone who said they're flattering on me - it does make me feel better about the look - the FEEL is already great to me. And the camera really DOES add pounds!
Mary I found that gingko fabric in the larger print! Rayon though, which isn't quite as soft as the cotton I used for this blouse. Looking for the perfect pattern....
Hepburn - I'll definitely go with that lol :D

a little sewing said...

Jilly, Your pants look really feminine and pretty and flattering. And the top is very stylish, too.
Enjoy your beautiful new outfit!

Martha said...

Lovely pants on you. I quite like the style on you. Fred would be honored.

And the blouse is perfect with it. I just purchased that pattern. I really like your version. It looks the way I remember Fred. Elegant. Soft. Comfortable.

Jillybejoyful said...

Martha I didn't have the pleasure of meeting Fred, but thanks to you, those are the words I'll carry with me whenever I wear these pants...Thank You :)

me said...

I commented on SG but wanted to say again how great these pants look on you. That pattern might just surface to the front for me again. I made several 'years' ago and had forgotten about this pattern. Thanks for bringing this back to the forefront.

Carolyn said...

These do look beautifully flattering with that elegant Katharine Hepburn feel to them, and comfy too; double win! It does feel good to make up something quick and instantly gratifying to get over the hump of a more challenging project...

Meg said...

Hi! Some of us thought it would be fun to get all Bay Area sewists together and plan something fun. I created a meet-up for us to put some events together. If you're interested, join here:

Unknown said...

These are extremely flattering pants on you, the whole outfit really is! I think skinny pants are getting waaay too much attention right now. A drapey, or flowy pant can look fabulous!