I am so in love with these trousers. I feel ready to take on anything wearing these! Bring it on 2021, I’m ready for you. These trousers are seriously ‘the boss’!
When Adaku of Dovetailed London asked if I’d like to have some of her gorgeous fabric and her Claudette palazzo pants pattern in exchange for a blog, I didn’t take too long to reply! I had already been stalking the Dovetailed website and had my eye on this ‘ A river runs through it’ fabric.
Let’s talk about this make. Do you know, the best thing about this pattern is that my lovely daughter is the cover girl! Hehe. She and I got to do some modelling for the new Dovetailed packaging a while back, it was fun.
This pattern is given a difficulty rating of 3 out of 5, but I think a beginner sewist could handle this. There is no zip or buttonholes to worry about. However, I do think the instructions assume a knowledge of sewing trousers that a beginner wouldn’t have, thus the 3 stars I guess.
There are just 4 pattern pieces, front leg, back leg, pocket and waistband, simple. The construction is really straightforward too.
The size range is from a U.K 8 -26. My measurements fell between a 12 and 14. I checked the finished garment measurements and saw that they allowed about 2 inches of ease. I decided to sew the 12, grade out to a 14 at the hips and back to a 12. On the pattern the sizes are colour coded and the size 12 is a pale yellow which was a bit difficult to trace, you might want to go over the actual pattern in a darker colour, if like me you need the size 12.
The pattern suggests that smaller scale prints work best for this pattern and I see the sense in this. These are a large pair of trousers, how much of a statement do you want to make?! Large scale print also makes it more complicated if you want to pattern match. Well, I went for a large scale print, although when I ordered it I couldn’t really tell how large the circles were. I knew that I wanted to make some adaptations to make my trousers a little less of a statement and I hoped the fabric would work well. I think it did!
I’m not a huge fan of elasticated or gathered waists, I prefer flat fronted garments as I like a smoother silhouette. So, making a size 12 waist when my waist measurement was actually for a 14, I hoped would give me a little less gathering, and it did. I also adjusted my pattern to remove some of the fullness just because I like a less flared wide leg trouser. To do this, I took both the front and back leg pieces and marked the knee point and then drew a line down to the hem. I cut along the line, see picture:
Then I overlapped the piece by 3 inches and stuck it down to create a new piece. I don’t know if this is the correct way to reduce fullness, but it’s my way and it worked.
One New year’s resolution I made was to be a bit neater with my sewing. I often rush through things like finishing the seams because I want to get the project done. I finished my seams with the overcast foot as I don’t have an overlocker, but a zigzag stitch would work too.
There’s a sense of magic in sewing up a pair of trousers, or at least that’s what I felt when I made my first pair. Join each front to a back at the inside and outside seams, put one leg inside the other, right sides together and join the crotch seams together, pull one leg out and voila, you have a pair of trousers, nearly. Probably best that you read the instructions!
And now for the waistband. The pattern calls for 1 inch elastic but I only had 1 and 3/4 inch elastic and seeing as I actually prefer a deeper waistband I used that. So of course I had to adapt my waistband piece by adding three quarters of an inch to its depth. For the second part of the attaching the waistband process, I decided to hand stitch the waistband in place. I always find it so hard to catch the wrong side of the waistband when I topstich from the right side. Hand stitching the waist was slow but neat. Finally, the hem, I didn’t hand stitch them! My trousers are a little longer than ankle length as they’re designed to be because I’m 5.4, but that’s ok as I wanted them longer.
I’m really loving the way the trousers have turned our, they feel balanced despite my alterations. These are great trousers for dressing up or down. I intend to wear these with chunky white trainers or chunky sandals, that’s me. I enjoyed wearing them with a plain black top and blazer, then switching it up with my denim jacket.
Now, for all you pattern matching lovers out there, I made no attempt to pattern match and I’m not sorry. I wanted to break up the pattern and not spend ages and take up more fabric than I needed trying to line up the print. I still think the overall affect of the trousers is good, better than good, pretty cool really 😎
Pattern: Claudette trousers
Fabric: ‘A river runs through it’
Claudette sewing kit