There are so many rites of passage for a young woman these days: the first kiss, the first Facebook stalker, the first time you can afford/ need skin care products that aren’t from Superdrug…and each is to be treasured in it’s own unique way.
Only last year, I passed another great milestone myself, that of proper pants.
Being the age I am I still had some lone stragglers at the back of my underwear drawer from former years. As a teenager I couldn’t quite afford anything proper from Topshop…apart from the pants. They had a rainbow of under-crackers with cheeky slogans and colourful patterns, that a younger me couldn’t resist. You could snaffle up 3 pairs for £6 (…and then £7…and then £9) but they were perfect to provide a colourful glimpse out the top of my low rise hipster bootcut jeans.
However, now I am older and wiser and this just won’t do. I have come to recognise in myself, the expression women wore when they could see a neon pink lace trim filling the space of midriff between my cropped slogan tee and waistband.
Younger ladies, this is a statement of intent, please take notice.
So my rite of passage came. Goodbye to the very last bastions of silly pants, hello serious pants for a serious woman.
No longer shall you buy pants with ‘Where’s Wally?’ or other cartoon characters on (do you even realise what that means?! they are implying Wally can be found in your pants!!)
No longer shall you buy pants that can’t stand up to the washing machine and loose the elastic
No longer shall you buy pants that are 100% fashion and 0% function
Pants should provide bum coverage and should be comfortable without a creating a VPL and also natural fibres rule!
They should in as Goldilocks would have wished, neither not big or too small…and also not to hot or too cold I guess.
With all this in mind I thought I would make some pants, because if there were any garments that should be tailor made to it’s wearer it should be the one that is nearest to your dearest.
I had picked up a remnant of some lovely soft bamboo jersey and had just enough for a small project.
I got the pattern for my knickers from Seamwork.
Seamwork is the new online mag that the team over at Colette patterns make. I download it directly to my tablet and each issue also gives you access to a couple of sewing patterns. Although I prefer a paper mag, I like the mag for the free patterns of course, but also because it strikes a good note for intermediate sewers, where as some of the printed mags can boarder on the simplistic in my opinion.
The pattern, the Geneva, was from a lingerie specific issue and there was also a pattern for a wireless bra too, if you are blessed as one of the smaller of breast.
The pattern was a pdf print out and very speedy to stick together. There were three views of the pattern, with an
option for front panelling which opens up the possibilities for all kinds of pattern and texture combinations.
For this pair I chose view 2 which had a nice lace detailing I wanted to try.
The pattern was very simple with only three pieces to cut out, the front, the back and gusset. Very helpfully the pattern runs you through how to sew the stretch fabrics with a regular sewing machine or with an overlocker.
This is a really speedy pattern and you could easily knock up a few pairs in an afternoon.
I really chose the option to cut out the main fabric behind the lace detailing to flash some flesh. The gusset was easy to place and I checked in on some of my store bought M&S favourites to mimic the stitching style.
Now for the mis-fires… I followed the pattern’s recommendation for the zig-zag length and width but it didn’t quite provide as stretchy a stitch as these pants needed- probably because both the jersey was very fine and drapey and the elastic lace I used had a very high stretch percentage too, but it was certainly passable.
Secondly, I did follow the sizing instructions and cut a very reasonable Medium. The pattern describes these as low-rise. When working with my cut pieces I did think to myself “these are quite large”, but assumed that when pieced together and with the elastic they would be OK. I was wrong and what I have made myself, is a very nice, but very large pair of pants.
As you can see from these picture they fit comfortably over my jeans with out hardly stretching at all, so should I choose to cultivate a large booty these knickers would give me more than enough space.
I do find this was quite a lot with sewing patterns; there is heaps of advice to be true to your measurements and to not follow the sizing number, if you’re not an 8 by measurement, don’t cut and 8. However I find that I tend to cut sizes way to big just to be safe and leaves me in these situations with tent pants. I know it’s much better to be too big than too small as I can alter if I so wished, but i’m hardly going to make a toile for my bloomers am I?
I am tempted to keep these for the type of day when you just walk about in your pants and drink wine from a mug- I have both trousers AND very nice wine glasses but sometimes they just aren’t what I need. However keeping these pants would not only encourage these type of
super brilliant indulgent days, they would only clutter and already cluttered wardrobe.
I have spoken before about the aggression of craft gifts “I MADE IT FOR YOUUU AND YOU MUST LOVE IT AS HARD AS I LOOVEE YOU!”
I haven’t worked out the wording to offer a friend these snazzy underpants
“Hi. I noticed your tush is a bit plumper than mine and do you want to wear pants I hand made and every time you wear them you an think of the loving man-hours I put into their creation”
This would freak out even my most sturdy of friends who have even heard my honest carnal thoughts about Zac Efron in High School Musical 3.
Please go enjoy the arrival of spring and shake your tush, however plump it may be.