1930s | 1940s | Modern Patterns | Pants / Trousers | Vintage Sewing

Smooth Sailing Trousers – My First Pair of Pants!

By on May 31, 2015

After going through a phase of sewing nothing but knit dresses and T-shirts, I’m back with a very vintage-style garment! This is my first pair of pants, made from the Smooth Sailing Trousers pattern from Wearing History. Since I became interested in vintage styles, I’ve always loved 30’s/40’s style wide-leg trousers, and this pattern was exactly what I was looking for! It’s hard to see because the fabric is black, but there are pleats at the front, darts at the back, a side zipper, and optional cuffs, belt loop and belt. I made the version without cuffs, but with the belt loops. I skipped the belt, though, because I have a couple black belts already!

I cut a size 12 for the muslin and graded to a 14 at the hips, but ended up sizing up for a little more ease at the waist. I tweaked the fit a little though by keeping the darts, pleats and crotch curve from the size 12. I also shortened the pieces by 2″.

I used a bamboo rayon (not sure what to call it exactly) with nice drape, but it ended up being really shifty and stretchy on the bias after I washed it – it was originally very crisp and linen-like. It probably wasn’t ideal for these pants, because they’ve really stretched out and need re-hemming (possibly some other alterations too…).

The pattern is very simple to construct, perfect for someone new to making pants. The hardest part was working with the fabric! If they hadn’t stretched out so much, I would have been very happy with how they turned out. Right now, I have a bit of a love-hate relationship with them, but I’ve made anther pair and I can definitely say that I love the pattern and the style!

For more photos and construction details, check out my blog! I also wrote a detailed review of the pattern as a guest post on Sew Sweetness, if you want to know more about the pattern itself!

Oh, and I also made the blouse I’m wearing in these photos. It’s the Sewaholic Pendrell, made from a muumuu that I bought at a thrift store! Thanks for reading!

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1940s | Pants / Trousers | Vintage Sewing

1940s Wide Leg Trousers (EvaDress/Simplicity 3322)

By on May 13, 2015

2015 seems to be the the Year of the Pants for me – no more procastinating.

On the way  to sewing my dream project – perfect vintage jeans – I finally made the EvaDress Wide Leg Trousers (3322), a repro of Simplicity 3322 c.1940. The fabric is navy gaberdine.

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I haven’t made an EvaDress pattern before, so I wasn’t sure what to expect with fit etc. I did have to make four muslins to get the fit right though – it may have been due to the pattern grading to a large size (I made size 40). Thankfully pants are normally pretty quick to sew up.

The main changes I made were to use a back zipper instead of side buttons, and to lengthen the crotch depth by about 3/4 inch.

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I’ve already made another pair up in cranberry gaberdine, and have a chocolate pair waiting in the wings too.

Even better, they go perfectly with a Smooth Sailing Blouse that I made a while back (isn’t orange and navy a great combination?). I think this may be the 15th time I’ve made this pattern up, it’s such a great staple.

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As always, there’s more on my blog!

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1800s | Mens | Pants / Trousers

Edwardian Waistcoat and trousers.

By on February 25, 2015

So been crazy busy with school but its reading week so I have some time to post some things I have been making lately.  Last semester I had a major Tailoring project which consisted of a waist coat and trousers. I ended choosing the edwardian era, about 1895 was the year I choose.

Before I came to school, I have never made mens wear or anything so time consuming, with all the canvas, slip stitching and cross stiching, india tape and etc.

This was also my first pair of trouser with a fly zip i have made. Which I know is not period accurate. But it’s costume studies we need simple and easy for quick changes if they are necessary.

It’s made from 100% pure wool and lining material that was originally blue satin which did not work out so i switch out for black.

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and by chance I actually fit into my final project so I wear my waistcoat with jeans or some of my circle skirts. the trousers only fit because of the pockets that all my hips to fit into the pants!

Also not really retro, but this semester we made jacket. Totally got my teacher to let me make the latest doctors jacket and it fits!

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1940s | Pants / Trousers

1940s Trousers (Simplicity 3688)

By on June 30, 2014

At the beginning of the year I set myself the goal of sewing three items of clothing that I’ve never made before – trousers, a swimsuit, and a coat. One down, two to go, as I recently made my first pair of trousers!
Vintage Simplicity 3688 19040s Trousers
These were made using Simplicity 3688 which is a reproduction 1940s pattern. The pattern envelope includes both the adorable original illustrations, and photos of the finished items which (while not exactly thrilling photos) allow you to get a sense of the finished shape.
Vintage Simplicity 3688 19040s Trousers
I would totally recommend these trousers to other trouser newbies. They are made from only three pattern pieces (five fabric pieces) and are a quick make (my favourite kind!). Personally I love the vintage shape with the high waist & wide leg. I used a grey polyester suiting fabric which has a nice drape which suits the wide leg & is light-weight for the summer.
Vintage Simplicity 3688 19040s Trousers

Vintage Simplicity 3688 19040s Trousers
I was lucky enough to get to take these photographs in the Lake District, actually at Beatrix Potter’s House and just outside. For those outside the UK who may not know it, the Lake District it is like a storybook version of England – all tiny villages, countryside, slate and stones walls. Basically it’s gorgeous.

More photos and nattering on my blog, English Girl at Home

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1940s | Vintage Sewing

Wearing the Pants…

By on June 24, 2013

You guys – I MADE PANTS!

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Finally, after many years of sewing, I tackled my sewing nemesis.

Sure, they aren’t fitted pants or anything – I wanted big, wide, swing-y 40’s styled pants. But I made them. And they fit. And there isn’t any – ahem – wrinkling where there shouldn’t be.

While it did take me 3 muslin attempts, I finally managed to wrangle this 40’s pants pattern into submission. But it wasn’t easy. Oh dear, this pattern…

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The cover image makes them look so sleek and Katherine Hepburn-esque. Even the pattern outlines on the back promise this exact outcome. But in actuality, the paper pattern tapers, majorly, towards the bottom of the pant leg. Leaving you with ballooning hips and skinny ankles. Not a good look people. It’s a little Fresh Prince-Harem-Pant gone wrong (was that ever right?). Oh, and they taper on both the back and front pant pieces, in both the inner and outer leg.

 

That first muslin made me really question my friendship with this pattern and making pants and so we took a break. We both needed some time apart. I needed to make patterns that weren’t completely different to the front and back cover images. And the pants pattern needed some time alone to think about what it had done.

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After a few weeks, we sat down together, sort of made up, and muslin 2 came into being. I made a completely new muslin, straightened out the outer leg taper on both front and back pieces (at this point, I hadn’t connected the dots to realise that the inner leg tapered as well, because it didn’t taper quite as much as the outer). I also added some extra hip and waist room. I tried them on, and to my surprise, we were nearly there.

Onto muslin 3 and I unpicked the inner legs, basted on some extra muslin and straightened out the slight taper there. Now the legs were pretty much perfect. Looking much more Katherine Hepburn than Fresh Prince.

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Oh, these pants I’m wearing? Yeah, I made them.
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If you would like to read a bit more about the changes I made and for more pictures, head on over to my blog here.

xx
Jen

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1930s | 1940s | 1950s

Three Outfits for Three Decades

By on June 14, 2013

Well its that time of year again…the local lindy exchange and I’ve set myself quite a task. A new outfit for each dance. So that’s three for the evening dances. The themes go Casual, Vintage, Seaside.
So I decided to have a general nautical feel and blues as a colour running through the outfits.

 

Outfit 1 –
A boat print 1940’s style dress. This is for SEASIDE. Used Butterick 5209 again. Its becoming my ‘go to’ pattern. I liked the bodice but not the waistband or skirt. Instead I wore a slip and vest underneath.

Outfit2 –

Navy blue swing trousers to wear with red and white striped top in the evening but a white to for the day events. This is for VINTAGE. I used the Eliza M Swing hop pants pattern.

I even went beyond the pattern instructions and added a few extras like bias binding the facing, decorative buttons and hand picking the zip. You may recognise the top I’m wearing from this post.

Outfit 3 –

Blue Polkadot circle skirt (with complimentary top.) This is for CASUAL. I used Simplicity 3847 for the skirt.

I did wear a petticoat underneath but it was homemade and didn’t give enough uhmff. Next time I wear it I’ll have to find an alternative one.

Read my original post at my blog.

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