Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Sewing Trousers for the 1st Time... and some Tilly Buttons

Today I was lucky enough to receive a lovely little present in the mail from the gorgeous Tilly, whose giveaway I won a while ago. Here are some cute pics of my present all wrapped up and my card:

And here are the buttons!

Thanks Tilly!! I promise my sewing-themed Sencha is at the top of my list!!

In other news, I have decided to delve into the world of sewing trousers. For the first time. Here is the pattern I have chosen:

It has received good reviews on Pattern Review, and a friend of mine has sewn another pair of alice + olivia trousers and thought they were nicely drafted and relatively easy to sew.

I am a bit nervous though about this uncharted territory. Does anyone have any tips about trouser-sewing?

I am going to make them a size larger than I would normally make or buy. And I'm definitely going to make a muslin. I'm also going to take this pattern to the Burda Style Club I'm going to tomorrow night to get some tips.

But please!! Any tips or resources you may have for sewing trousers, please share!


  1. Yay! Glad the buttons arrived (the post office was interrogating me about the contents so I had visions of some confused customs officer opening them).

    No idea about sewing trousers - I'll be interested to see how you get on...

  2. Yaay for trying trousers! I have my muslin of my first ever pair of trousers to bring along tomorrow night too - we can both get tips!

  3. I have made three pairs of trousers and I think making trousers is relatively easy. They seem frightening, but really aren't. But I generally find that I need to make trousers a size smaller than what would fit me. I have always had to take in trousers, when I made them according to my actual hip and waist measurements. But maybe that's just me. Good luck! I'm sure they'll turn out nice.

  4. I am thinking of starting my first pair of trouser soon as well, so I'm very interested to see how it goes for you. Good luck!

  5. I've made a few pairs of trousers and of course, they never turned out quite right. I haven't attempted them in a really long time. I'm glad you are and I'm so excited to see how yours end up. Apparently trousers are the most difficult apparel item to get the right fit with. But I'm sure that you will do great! I've heard very good things about those Alice and Olivia patterns so I think you picked a winner. I might just have to try some after you...Best of luck and congrats on the buttons!

  6. Hello Rachel
    It is well within your sewing capabilities to make trousers. You have picked a well reviewed (and handsome) pattern. I gave up sewing trousers in disguist over 15 years ago after one too many failures - and it is only in the past year I have tried again (with success 4 times). I think this has something to do with the low rise and wide legs fashionable now suit my tall pear shape better. What I do when making up a new pattern is
    1. check measurements carefully on pattern and the amount of ease noted on the pattern sheets.
    2. cut out with a size larger than measurements suggest
    3. make up muslin with larger seam allowances to accommodate having cut out larger size (ie you are actually sewing to your suggested size). use light calico or something with body for the muslin (not a thin drapey fabric)
    4. sew up muslin with long stitching (easier to pull out if need to)
    5. fit only after sewing on waistband otherwise it is hard to get the garment sitting correctly
    6. making a muslin is a lot of work but will give you a block that you can use for comparing and modifying other patterns - especially that hard to visualise crutch seam
    7. pants adjustments are in 3D and not seemingly logical - there are many resources on Pattern Review and by bloggers to help with fitting pants - I have only had to adjust side seams but I always lengthen the crutch slightly given my height.
    Good luck Rachel - but you will be fine. You look great in trousers.

  7. Thanks everyone for your comments, but thank you especially Maree. They are wonderful tips, and I know others who read here will be appreciative of them too. I agree regarding the wide leg trousers - you do look wonderful in the trousers you have made, and I think they suit my frame better too. I didn't think to look on Pattern Review for general tips - but have put it on my 'to do list' for before I begin the pattern I have.

    I bought some cotton-type fabric for the muslin, so I will definitely post them when I have sewn them.

  8. Happy trouser sewing Rachel. Sorry my post ended up being a tome.

  9. I found sewing trousers relatively easy...but I think I have a very average figure (at least for vintage patterns). I think the pattern you chose will be great and agree that a wide-leg is probably the best way to go...

  10. Hey there, I found you Rachel!!! It was nice seeing you and your lovely dress on Thursday! I have had a look through your blog and am very impressed with your achievements especially as you are relativly new to sewing. I adore your Marion Martin blouses - just adorable! Are they from an old pattern? See you soon...

  11. Hi Cherri! I commented on your blog just now too, but wanted to say I'm glad you found me!!

    The blouses are from a vintage pattern. I'll bring it to the next Burda club meet. It was really simple to sew. I'm thinking of making another one soon in a navy and white polka dot.

    I'll be keeping a close eye on your blog - can't wait to see the pics of your blouses with the buttons sewn on! xx

  12. Woops, I meant so say Hi Corinne!!