Comfy Bermuda Shorts (S1167)

A spring wardrobe wouldn’t be complete without a pair of shorts! While it is now “officially” spring…it is still a bit too chilly to wear these. Besides, I have winter white legs so I’ll just have to spare everyone that for a while longer!

Pattern Review – Simplicity 1167

Pattern Description: Mimi G’s shorts pattern is part of a wardrobe set that includes a tank, jacket, pants, and shorts.

Pattern Sizing: 6-14. This time I made a size 12 based on the actual garment measurements instead of the body measurements (which called for a size 14). I prefer less ease in my bottoms so that worked out well.

The hems are the same length…I’m just standing crooked!

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it? Yes, except for my modification on the hem.

Were the instructions easy to follow? Yes. I didn’t use the fly instructions since I’m in love with Angela Wolf’s fly method from her Craftsy class “Sewing Designer Jeans.” This is the second such fly I’ve made over the last 2 weeks and it is so awesome…I’ll never use another method!

I used some quilting cotton on the fly shield for a fun surprise.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern? I like the look of it since it’s a bit dressier than jeans. I also liked how the pocket was done. I’ve got my eye on the jacket as well.

Fabric Used: Bottom-weight twill in a medium gray color from JoAnn’s. It has a slight bit of stretch but I can’t tell if that’s because of the content or just mechanical give.

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made: I had to make the back darts wider by an extra 3/8″ on each dart leg. I also ended up pegging the leg along the inseam from about mid thigh to hem. My legs narrow out faster than the pattern called for. I also cut off 1 1/2″ off the hem and just folded it up to blind stitch rather than the folded hem called for. I think this gives a more polished finish.

Changes I plan for future makes: For the next pair, I will have to raise the back waist a bit to get over my booty and probably take it in just a bit more. Not sure if that’s a swayback issue or just how my bum is shaped, but I’ve noticed this problem with all 3 bottoms I’ve made for the Sudoku Wardrobe. I may just have to plan on this for every make.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others? I really like the finished garment and would consider making it again. I do recommend it to anyone looking for a Bermuda style short.

Conclusion: Nice shorts that are super comfortable and will be infinitely wearable once it finally warms up.

White Skinny Jeans (S8222 … again)

My previous pair of jeans (really my first ever!) turned out pretty great except for a few minor fit issues and the front zipper placement. My goal with this second pair was to improve on the fit and get it just right.

These are such comfy jeans and I think they are the best fitting I have in my closet! I’ll definitely be making more, and in fact bought some bright teal green denim just this week. More jeans in my future!

Pattern Review – S8222

Pattern Description: Mimi G’s design for skinny jeans. Includes three options for the back piece to fit slim, average, and curvy.

Pattern Sizing: 6-14. I went with size 14 average but made some modifications for a better fit.

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it? Yes!

Were the instructions easy to follow? Yes, although I did do quite a bit differently. I followed the fly zipper instructions from Angela Wolf’s Craftsy Class “Sewing Designer Jeans.”

 

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern? This is my second make using this pattern and I have another in the queue. I like the higher rise and the fit. The construction was also quite a bit easier the second time around and I’m pretty sure for my 3rd pair I won’t even have to read the instructions.

Fabric Used: White Stretch Denim from Joann’s. This was a bit less opaque than I would have hoped, but really, I guess that’s to be expected from white.

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made: I made all the same fitting as design changes as described in my last review. In addition, I made the following changes:

  • Fly overlap: Extended the right fly area by 1/2″ so when the zipper was attached it was actually tucked in under the left size by 5/8″.
  • Finally got a jeans button to work!
  • Cropped the hem up by about 1 1/2″.
  • Lowered front waistband: I did this by slashing a line from the side seam to the center front and folding out 3/4″ at the CF. This maintains the length of the side seam so it matches the back but dropped the center front by 3/4″ so it sits more comfortably on my tummy.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others? Yes…this is my second, the third already has fabric set aside and I may go back and make another in the dark blue.

Conclusion: Is there such a thing as too many pairs of jeans? Especially when they fit? I don’t think so. I highly recommend this pattern!

 

Flashback to the 80’s

As part of my Sudoku wardrobe I decided to make a Nettie Bodysuit by Closet Case files. I love the idea of a fitted t-shirt that stays tucked in. As I was searching for the perfect fabric for this top, I was mainly concerned about the color matching the Sudoku board and choose a knit that is a bit more drapey than I would have liked. It works, but sure shows all my lumps and bumps!

Pattern Review – Nettie Bodysuit

Pattern Description: From website: Nettie is a quick and easy to make wardrobe staple. Close fitting with high cut arms, she can be made into a knit dress or a bodysuit. This pattern is infinitely customizable with a choice of 3 sleeve lengths, 2 neckline and 3 back variations. I made the scoop front and high back neck version with short sleeves.

Pattern Sizing: 0-20. Based on body measurements I used a size 12 at the top down to the bust then graded to size 10 for the waist and hips.

According to the instructions it was designed for a 5’6″ gal in mind (which I am) but I found that it was maybe about 1″ too long in the torso for me. It could just be that my fabric was quite drapey and didn’t “recover” as well as it should lengthwise.

Next time, I may also shave off about 1/4″ at each side seam in the hip area for a closer fit under my bottoms. The point if for it to not bunch so I think I will need it to be just a bit more fitted in that area.

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it? Yes!

Were the instructions easy to follow? Yes, very. They were clear and the pictures showed exactly what I needed to do. It is quite a simple make anyway.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern? I think what I like best about this pattern is the versatility. There are 3 sleeve lengths, 2 front neck and 3 back neck variations. Also there is a dress version that I’m interested in. I’ll have to revisit how the snaps go in at the crotch. I used snaps I already had and don’t think they were the best option. They are a bit heavy and one already came out! I wonder if velcro would work?

Fabric Used: French Terry knit (50% Polyester / 50% Rayon) from JoAnn’s. I chose it because of the color mostly so don’t think it was the best option for the top. Next time I’ll choose something with a bit more structure and recovery, and definitely not as drapey.

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made: The only alteration I made was to grade the sizes. Otherwise, I make it exactly as written.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others? I would and will definitely sew it again. It is an easy make and I can see having one in each color. I’m excited to try out some of the different variations as well.

Conclusion: I highly recommend this pattern!

Everybody’s Talking about my Tight Pants (S8222)

I made jeans! And they turned out pretty okay.

This was quite an involved project and if it wasn’t for the Sudoku Wardrobe I probably would have let this remain a WIP for a long while. I ended up having to seam rip a few times (which is my least favorite) and McGuyver as solution for my button, but in the end I am happy with my wearable muslin.

Pattern Review – Simplicity 8222

Pattern Description: Mimi G’s design for skinny jeans. Includes three options for the back piece to fit slim, average, and curvy.

Pattern Sizing: 6-14. I went with size 14 average.

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it? Yes.

Were the instructions easy to follow? Yes. While there are a lot of steps to constructing the jeans, the instructions were very clear. I did do a few things differently (noted below) and I also didn’t interface anything, as per Angela Wolf in the Craftsy Class “Sewing Designer Jeans.”

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern? I was looking for a classic skinny jean and I think this pattern is a good starting point. I like also the Mimi G has a sew-along for this on you-tube with videos for each step. I did go watch the video for the fly because I was nervous about that. It actually wasn’t difficult to put together, however I will change the design of that area for my next make.

Fabric Used: Stretch denim (97% cotton/3% spandex) in a dark indigo blue color from Hancock’s, so it’s been in the stash for a while.

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made: Quite a few actually, and I’ll likely make some more in the future as well.

What I changed:

  • Front Pockets: I used a one piece lining design for the pockets as instructed by Angela Wolf. This includes a french seam on the inner edge of the pocket and the entire side of the pocket is attached to the side seam. It also reduces bulk since I used a light quilting cotton for the pocket lining.

  • Side seam. The side seams are the last to be sewn (before attaching the waistband) and when I tried them on, they were too loose! And this was after I had already decided to stitch with a 3/4″ seam (rather than the 5/8″) called for. I wanted it to be very fitted throughout. Also, I had about a 2″ gape at the top of the center back. I guess by booty is more curvy than I thought? Anyway, I ended up taking apart the side seam and cutting of 3/4″ from the back leg at the side seam. I also cut a bit of a triangle dart shape at the top of the back side seam (the CB was already top stitched so I just took it of the sides) taking 1/2″ at the top and grading out to 0″ at the hip.

  • Belt Loops: The belt loop piece was 3″ wide and the instructions said to fold it twice (4 thicknesses!). Instead I used 1 1/2″ wide and folded it in 3. I cut the strip from the selvage so I didn’t have to finish the edge…just fold and stitch.

What I will change for the next time:

  • Fly overlap: I don’t like the way the fly is designed. There is only the standard 5/8″ seam allowance on the right side so even though you scoot the zipper teeth over by 1/4″ it still peaks out … especially since these are so fitted and stretch around my body. I think I’ll add a wider seam allowance just on that part so I can tuck the zipper in a bit further.

  • Button troubles: This has nothing to do with the pattern and everything to do with my inability to use a hammer. I tried and failed to attach jeans buttons 3 times! in the end I tore a bit of a hole in the waist band where the tack was so I ended up doing a bit of a patch job with interfacing on the outsides and then a regular button over the top. Not the prettiest, but usable.

Inside of waistband at front. Patch behind new “regular” button.

A bit of interfacing behind the button.

  • Lower front waistband: I’m not sure why but on me the waistband slopes up in the front and reaches my bellybutton. On the back it is just right. I’ll have to play around with the pattern and likely lower the center front by about and inch and then grade out to meet the back at the side seam. Or, maybe I should take it out kind of like a dart being folded out only lower along the center front (mid-zipper maybe?) to maintain the shape of the waistline curve. Not sure…I’ll have to think about it. I think if the waistband cuts across my mommy tummy it will help keep it a bit tighter there…plus be a bit more to my preference.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others? I plan to sew it again in white denim making the changes listed above as well as making it more of a cropped pant. I’ll have to compare the changes I already made to the shaping at the side seams and decide if I need to go down a size. I’ll also have to be sure to compare the stretch in the denims to see if maybe I don’t have to tighten it as much. I do recommend it (with the slight note above for the fly) but it is an involved process to construct so keep that in mind.

Conclusion: Okay final product with great potential (with a few tweaks) to be a perfect jeans pattern.