Monday, January 03, 2011

A Pair of Pants...

I will admit that I'm overly sensitive to the elastic waist vs. fly front pants debate.  I truly understand that quite a few people associate elastic waist pants with ill-fitting, polyester pants that an older woman wears.  That if you are truly hip, cool and fashionable, you will be using a great fly front technique or some low risers on a funky pair of pants.

However, I'm soooooo past funky and low rise!  I'm soooooo much more into classic and elegant but more than that I'm into comfort.  And I truly believe that you can have a well-fitted pair of pants with an interesting elastic waist treatment.   Plus I honestly hate the way a fly front looks on my abundant abdomen.  This is me...and now that I've spent two paragraphs and alot of words justifying my point of view...here is my latest garment:


These pants are worn with a RTW twinset.  I have a load of these (RTW & "made by me" twinsets) in my wardrobe because they make dressing easy on cold wintery mornings.  Add a pair of pants or a skirt, a great necklace and I'm out the door.

Some stats:

Pattern:
TNT pants pattern

Fabric:
100% worsted wool purchased from Fabric Mart at least 5 years ago

Notions:
charcoal ambiance lining purchased from fabric.com
elastic
rayon seam binding


This pair of pants is an experiment in using a new lining technique.  Normally I've inserted a lining as two separate pairs of pants joined together at the waistline and I've experienced a lot of lining failure in the thigh area. I think due to the friction between the two fabrics moving/working against each other.  In an effort to address this issue, I've decided to sew the fashion fabric and lining together as one piece.  I discussed the challenge in this blog post and received some very interesting suggestions along with some requests to provide pictures of my sewing process.

Now if you're strictly a fly front girl, I totally understand you leaving now...plus how will I ever know!  *LOL* 

Jane commented:
"Carolyn, I learned a neat way of lining/underling pants. Cut the lining 5/8" larger on all the vertical seams and keep the regular size on the curved ones. Sew the vertical seams right sides together with the fashion fabric using a 1/4" seam and turn. The lining wraps around the fashion fabric pieces forming a mock hong kong finish. Then serge all the curved edges. I can hem to this underling and pressing in the crease is a snap as the lining and fashion fabric are treated as one. I won't do my wool pants any other way"

and Julie Culshaw added:
"do a search on the Threads website for a technique called "flat-lining". It is a way to line each piece of the pants, but it finishes the raw edges at the same time. I believe the only seam left to be seen is the crotch curve. A good technique that doesn't compromise the fit."
*BTW Julie, it's good to hear from you!  Glad you're still around and I miss your fabric store more than you know!!!!*

So I used the flat-lining technique to finish this pair of pants.  This technique can be found in Threads Issue #48, page 58 (thank you Threads Archive DVD for making this easy to find and use!) 


I flat lined the side seams and the inner thigh seams


and serge finished the crotch seams.


I added elastic and one of my labels to the back of the pants so that I would be able to tell the front from the back of the pants when dressing...and was extremely nervous during the entire process.  But as you can see from above there was no need because this technique worked perfectly.


I was also able to hand stitch the hems to the lining without seeing any of the stitching on the fashion fabric.  Love this!  Finally, by adding the lining to the fashion fabric and sewing it as one piece, the pants have a heavier feel to them...hopefully this will help with the warmth factor too!

talking to Danny who kept waving at me
while we were taking pictures!

There will be more pants making going on during the next couple of months because my existing pants either need to be repaired or retired and I wear pants more often in the winter than I do in the other seasons. 

In the process of moving onto the next piece to sew, I've changed up the order.  The BurdaStyle top is on hold because I'm not sure it will work.  It needs a little more thought.  Instead I've decided to work on the jacket and pants from the Pinstripe Follies Collection.  Now that these pants are working, I really got excited about making some of these pieces...but first a quick skirt. 

I don't make a lot of skirts anymore...probably because I already have quite a few in my closet but this particular piece of fabric is calling my name so that's what's up next. 

...as always, more later!

59 comments:

  1. You look FANTASTIC in this outfit. Terrific pants.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Oh I think these are fabulous! Love that lining technique too. I'm off to see if I have that Threads issue!

    About fly front pants...they pretty much look like crap on me. I have a pair of LH Euro's (the elastic waist version) that are my go-to fancy pants. ;) No one has ever noticed they're elastic waist.

    ReplyDelete
  3. The pants look beautiful on you.. I actually think you look more slender in the pants than in the dresses you have made. Great job! Thanks for sharing!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Sorry, the deleted comment was my "fake" blogger account to practice design layouts! :D Whoops.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Hope the new lining technique proves to wear well. The pants look fantastic, and comfort is definitely a high priority when you're in a garment for hours on end.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Although I live in fly front jeans, I've been moving more to the elastic waist myself. I never tuck in tops and wear them long, so it's impossible to tell. I definitely agree about the comfort factor!

    ReplyDelete
  7. I like that finish-it looks neat and I'm willing to bet that you're going to totally eliminate the "crawl" that lined pants will sometimes get. I think the lining will wear much better as well. Are you planning to re-do some of the pants with worn out linings? (don't think I would, but I'd rather make an entirely new pair of pants than have to rip one out)

    LOVE the pants too-I do like a pinstripe pant, they just look so finished and neat, and you can get all kinds of colors in the pinstripe (I've seen orange, lime green, purple, etc.) to play with in shoes and accesories, while keeping the overal look classic and tasteful.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Carolyn your pants turned out great as always. The method makes it look so nice and smooth.
    O.K. I have a question, I may have missed it or I just totally forgot. Did you ever show pictures of your sewing room /bedroom redo? I just can't recall seeing them and if so, would you direct me to which post it was? Thank you. I'm always curious to see what people have done/do to their sewing spaces.

    ReplyDelete
  9. I know I've said this before but, personally, I firmly believe that it is possible to combine comfort and style. And now you have proved me to be right because, WOW, your pants look fabulous - very sleek and elegant. This style definitely suits you!
    I am very intrigued by the lining technique - I am going to check it out on my Threads dvd (isn't it great?!)

    ReplyDelete
  10. Your pants look great on you... such a very elegant cut. You didn't owe anyone any justifications. You make what you like -- SIMPLE.ER

    ReplyDelete
  11. Fabulous job on the pants. With the exception of jeans, fly fronts on me are rarely comfortable and never flattering. I'm 100% with you that an elastic waist can be a much better option: it's all about knowing what feels and looks good on your body. Which you obviously do!

    ReplyDelete
  12. I don't care what kind of waist treatment you used on those because they look FABULOUS. And, more importantly, you look AMAZING! I hate buying/making pants because I hate how I look in them. You've given me hope.

    What a great picture to start the new sewing year!

    ReplyDelete
  13. nice! I love the photo of you chatting with Danny! Your pants look wonderful. Thanks for being the brave one to use this method, post about it and convince us tag-alongers to give it a try.
    And I love my elastic in my waistbands, too. That's just how it goes.

    ReplyDelete
  14. The pants look great both inside and out.

    ReplyDelete
  15. These look great! Very professional. If only our waists stayed the same measurement throughout the entire day--but they don't and elastic is great particularly when you can get results like these!

    ReplyDelete
  16. These pants look so nice on you! I admit to being a fly snob but you look wonderful in these! They make you look 15 pounds thinner!

    ReplyDelete
  17. What beautiful pants! You are an inspiration!

    ReplyDelete
  18. vacarisella@gmail.comJanuary 03, 2011 3:43 PM

    Ok, your pants look absolutly fabulous!! So I just have to know; did you find another source for the elastic? What pants pattern did you use? I am so darn excited to see such a nice pair of slacks with an elastic waist! Seriously, I'm beside myself! LOL!
    You look terrific in your pants.
    ~Valerie

    ReplyDelete
  19. Thank you for posting this! I made a goal to make a pair of fitted pants for myself this year, but I have a rounder body than most and am very scared to do that. Your post gave me "permission" to stick to the elastic waist. I'm definitely gonna check out that Threads article about the flat-lining. Also, I like the elastic method you used. It looks much cleaner than a standard casing. Do you know of a tutorial out there for that?

    ReplyDelete
  20. Great pants! I was actually thinking about this technique yesterday and wasn't sure where to look in my reference books. I agree with you about the front fly zip on tummies and I am going to try a side zip to see if that gives a flatter look. I like the look of the elastic you've used, it looks like it would ber very comfortable.

    ReplyDelete
  21. Carolyn -- Gorgeous, as always and I'll be interested in hearing your reports on the 'wear' issue, too. Also - and I realize this is homing in on one little detail: I LOVE that you are wearing white shoes!!! OMG - that looks so great. I'm afraid I let the whole 'no white before Memorial/no white after Labor Day' thing influence me but you look fab.

    ReplyDelete
  22. This is the cutest outfit!!! I've been tempted by the elastic waist procedure myself and may very well take it on. It's not like I EVER tuck in my shirt! :/

    ReplyDelete
  23. I think you look great in this outfit. The style and color combination suit you perfectly!

    ReplyDelete
  24. Have you ever tried pants without a waistband, and using a faced front and an invisible side zip? That would reduce bulk.

    ReplyDelete
  25. I am new to the site and I love it. I am an intermediate plus size sewer, I usually make tailored coat dresses but I swore to myself this would be the year I would take the plunge and make pants. I love the pants you made. I would appreciate if you would recommend a pants pattern with elastic for a plus size person trying to make their first pair of pants.

    Thanks

    ReplyDelete
  26. As always a wonderful job. I love how you express yourself in your blog and with your sewing. I with you on elastic waist. When I sit at work all day at the desk, they are the most comfortable. Also, I never tuck my shirts into my pants, so know one even knows they are elastic. I love the lining technique you used. I would love to try..where do I find the directions?

    ReplyDelete
  27. Cool. Thanks for the technique details. I have the same 'wear' issues with pants and my thighs too. I appreciate your work.
    The pants look good on you.

    ReplyDelete
  28. This is a great outfit on you and the way you wear these pants I don't think they look any different than if they were flat front so it makes sense to go with what works for you. I have grey pants on my list of things to sew and I think they just moved up the list!

    ReplyDelete
  29. Sign me up in the "I LOVE elastic waist pants and I ain't gonna apologize, so there" crowd. It seems like my waist is always fluctuating in size (throughout the month and even throughout the day), so elastic waist pants are necessary for comfort.

    I will say however, that I am not adverse to a fly front, as long as it's paired with some elastic (like many of Loes Hinse's designs).

    I have been wanting to make a few pairs of pants lately and I was debating about how to line them. I will be using your method, because you make them look so darn fab!

    ReplyDelete
  30. Your pants look great. Isn't flat lining wonderful? I have been using this technique for years, ever since Threads published the original article. It sort of kills two birds with one stone!

    ReplyDelete
  31. You look good in your outfit. I'm a BIG fan of elastic waistband, simply because of my health buttock. In RTW fly front pants, they ofter don't come up far enough to cover my rear end where elastic waistband pants do and are very comfortable. Therefore, I agree with your accessment about style and quality.

    What pattern did you use? I'm in the process of fitting pants and haven't found my own TNT pair.

    ReplyDelete
  32. They look great! Who's up close and personal enough with the front of your pants to know they don't have a fly? You rock them. g

    ReplyDelete
  33. Those pants are spectacular. They look very upscale. Nice work!

    ReplyDelete
  34. They look fantastic! Thanks for showing the inside construction details.

    ReplyDelete
  35. Love the pants and thank you so much for the flat lining info. That old issue of Threads is no longer available for purchase, BUT the technique can be found in "Beyond The Pattern: http://tinyurl.com/2bk2mxm

    ReplyDelete
  36. This outfit looks wonderful on you! You've made a number of beautiful dresses and skirts, but I really like this number the most. It puts you in a whole new light. Great job!

    ReplyDelete
  37. Your outfit looks great!

    One of my pet peeves is folks who sneer and deride elastic waist pants. I can understand that, for some, it is not flattering, particularly if they have a much larger hip than waist. But for me, it is the only way to go. So there. :)

    ReplyDelete
  38. The pants look great on you! I love the way you styled them with the white twin-set.

    ReplyDelete
  39. Oh I love those pants!!! I am now a comfort girl and never wear my tops tucked in so I don't know why I continue to struggle with the uncomfortableness of a fly front. Your post has freed me up to make the elastic waist pants. I love your application of the elastic - any chance of showing us how you do it? Thanks again and love your blog and the beautiful clothes you make.

    ReplyDelete
  40. The pants look great and your advice is spot on. You look beautiful. That smile!

    ReplyDelete
  41. Great look! Thanks for sharing the sewing steps.

    ReplyDelete
  42. Great look! I too like the elastic waist comfort. I often make Loes Hinse Europeans because they fit ME, and I use a fly front about half the time. I made a pair from the same fabric you used here, and I love the look, fit, and feel of these pants. Hope you enjoy yours too!

    ReplyDelete
  43. I love using this technique on pants and skirts. I love the weight that it adds to the garment fabric. I don't have any hips so elastic waist pants are my best friend if I don't want my pants sliding down.

    ReplyDelete
  44. Great fit and they look super stylish with white twin set and shoes. Personally I prefer an invisible zip on the side. This cut creates the illusion of being a few kilos lighter than I am.

    ReplyDelete
  45. What woman actually NEEDS a fly front on her pants? To point out the blindingly obvious a fly front is very convenient for men but a side zip or elastic is just fine for ladies. If you are not comfortable in your clothes, you are not stylish. I use elastic waist in pants that I wear under layers and I prefer side zips in everything else because a front zip gives you 'sag' and 'pooch', often when you haven't even got much real 'sag' and 'pooch'. I realized that when I started sewing as a skinny teenager and now I am a not so skinny lady in her middle years, I am glad I learned it!

    Anyway, as the "ladylike retro look" comes back this year, I guess at least we'll be seeing a lot of side openings on pants and skirts (both zips and button plackets).

    ReplyDelete
  46. Wow! Your pants look amazing~ you did an excellent job!
    As for fly front vs. elastic~ I'm not a fan of elastic, but I won't rule elaztic out if the pants fit great and they are confortable as you say.

    ReplyDelete
  47. "That if you are truly hip, cool and fashionable..."

    I ask, who is more hip, cool or fashionable that you?? I rest my case. ;-)

    Love the pants, and I'm right there with you on comfortable waists. I wear both, but if it's not comfortable, I won't wear it at all no matter what the waist treatment.

    I love this look with the twinset too. They've been on my radar lately cuz I love me a nice twinset and my closet is seriously lacking.

    ReplyDelete
  48. I just realized that elastic waist pants will never, ever, give anyone that "string around a balloon" effect that you get with a rigid set-in waistband. You'll have a much smoother silhouette line if your clothes can "give".

    (and I agree with the poster that says you look like you've lost weight in those pants-you really do! I know you prefer dresses but some body types can carry pants really well, and yours is obviously one of them)

    ReplyDelete
  49. These are great. Who cares what the waist treatment is? The thing is that they are flattering and comfortable to wear and *you* like them!

    ReplyDelete
  50. You look fabulous in that outfit! I love your dresses but you look fantastic in those pants!

    ReplyDelete
  51. Very nice pants! If the top isn't tucked in, the waistline treatment totally doesn't matter. These definitely give the look of a tailored pant, and only you know the secret of their comfort!

    ReplyDelete
  52. Oh Carolyn, I love you in all of those amazing dresses you've made, but dear, you need to keep this outfit at that top of your list when you need a "kick ass and take names" look. I'm not even joking! You look FABULOUS in this outfit! LOVE IT!!

    ReplyDelete
  53. You look amazing in these trousers. Absolutely gorgeous. Who cares if they are tied with string at the waist if they look so fabulous!

    Way to go you. I can't wait to see more pants from you.

    ReplyDelete
  54. My hip measurement is much larger than my waist and elastic waist trousers are hideous on me, though I'm also not keen on fly front. I go with side or back invisible zips and countour waistbands or facings generally as I like the smooth look this gives.

    ReplyDelete
  55. A great pair of pants. You look great in them. I like the flat lining technique and take advantage of it sometimes to beef up fashion fabric.

    ReplyDelete
  56. Great pants, you look gorgeous in this outfit! Thaks for sharing such fantastic inspiration!

    ReplyDelete

Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment! It is so appreciated.

LinkWithin

Related Posts with Thumbnails