Today I’m sharing another sewing post – finally! My plan was for my blog this year was to share a lot more sewing posts, but then I, well, never really got round to do that. I mean, I shared a few right at the beginning of January then worked on a couple of longer projects, including these trousers, and got super busy not around the sewing machine and haven’t had a chance. But anyway, I’m finally sharing these now!
Sewing books are kind of my favourite thing at the moment. Gertie Sews Vintage Casual is one that I asked Ben to buy me for Christmas, then persuaded him to let me see it early since we were visiting a fabric shop in Harrogate and I wanted to know what I needed. I ended up picking out about 4 or 5 projects from the book to work on, and the cigarette pants were where I decided to start – I know, I don’t exactly make things easy for myself! I’d been wanting to try out making jeans for a while, and these were a good compromise as they’re not technically a jeans pattern, but trousers made with denim.
The denim I picked doesn’t have any stretch, and the book recommends sizing up in this case. It took me a lot of deciding whether to go for a size 4 or size 6 in these, so actually ended up drawing exactly in between the two sizes – I guess I went for a size 5 then?! I was expecting to have to make loads of adjustments to these as trousers are not the easiest thing to fit with different sizes for waist, hips, crotch depth, leg length etc. but in the end, I didn’t have to make a single adjustment and they fit really quite well! The width of the leg on the calf is definitely too wide (you get that “drainpipe” leg type look), but rolling them up so they sit just above ankle length gives them that retro look. If I make them again (which I probably will, maybe in a jacquard type fabric), I’ll narrow the leg at the side seams below the knee slightly. Aside from that, I’m amazed with how closely the waist and hips fit! It seems that Gertie’s patterns are made for a shape similar to mine, with a narrow waist and larger hips. I have a short waist and very sudden flare out into wide hips that can be quite difficult to fit, so I was surprised how well the pattern worked.
The instructions weren’t too bad to follow with this up until the pockets which made absolutely no sense whatsoever! I’m pretty certain that one of the diagrams is wrong which completely threw me off, but I managed to figure out how it worked by remembering how I inserted the pockets on Ben’s shorts and went that way. It took a bit of work, but I got there in the end, and they have awesome deep pockets.
This was the first time I tried an invisible zip too which I’d previously been really scared of for some reason. Actually it wasn’t too bad! I practised a bit first, and my first attempt went really well – all lined up properly and everything!
One small issue I have with them is that the facing is pretty bulky even though I didn’t use interfacing as recommended. I’d imagine it’s because of using denim, but it’s not too bad or noticeable when I wear them luckily. I did like how neatly the insides ended up though (and forgot to take a pic, oops!) – I edged the facings with grey bias binding so they look really pretty, and I pinked the other inside seams to prevent fraying.
And overall, I’m really pleased with them! There is an option in the book to show how to make them more “jean-like” with topstitching etc. but I like the simplicity of these. One of the most awesome things about this book too is that each pattern can be made into several others with a few tweaks, so now I know how these trousers fit, I can make different versions including capris, wide leg trousers and shorts – exciting!