Monday, 23 December 2013

Sailor Slacks and Offset Warehouse Free Thread Code


First up: you may or may not have heard of the Offset Warehouse, but if you are interested in making some more socially and environmentally sustainable fabric purchases, they are your dudes (/dudettes). I'll be coming back to this topic and this company in the New Year, but in the meantime I am able to offer you a check out code that will entitle you to a free organic cotton thread when you spend over £30. Valid until 31st Jan 2014, the code is: SoZoLovesEco

So, currently I am trying to crawl commando-soldier style out of the heaven/hell of the three months since the baby-tornado landed squarely on my life. And as I metaphorically pick myself up and dust myself off, I've discovered that, lo and behold, I have a body! It's a bit of a mess, and different from the pre-preggers times with its larger, leaky boobs and its looser, slightly crinkly belly skin. But it's familiar none the less. My post-birth wardrobe now consists of three pairs of pre-pregnancy leggings/jeggings and on top I'm wearing layers of vests, jersey tops and cardigans, the combo I've found to be the easiest for 'gaining access' to breast feed without freezing. And whilst I'm pinned to the sofa feeding Dolores or being used as her bed, my thoughts often wander to my long-lost bezzie: sewing.

I'm getting a little fed up of my limited selection of clothing and am longing to add a little stylistic variety for getting out and about in. Sewing woven dresses or tops is pointless as my bust has grown and I don't want to waste precious time and fabric when I don't know what I'll be 'left with' when I stop breast feeding and deflate. I have more than enough jersey tops to keep me going even with a couple of vom-incidents (her not me, usually) each day, so there's no need to make any of those either. I can't begin to imagine ever having enough time again to spend on a large project like a coat or jacket so that leaves bottoms to consider sewing next. I wear skirts so infrequently (particularly in Winter/Spring) plus I already have some awesome ones, so I'm planning trousers. Will you help me?


Over a year later, I am still lamenting the death of my black and denim pairs of sailor trousers. Plus the wide legged style would be a really different silhouette to my current be-jegginged one, so that's what we are looking at here people. So let's talk pattern-options, I'd appreciate your opinions...


Firstly, there's the old 'If it ain't broke don't fix it' option of using the same pattern (Burda 8488, pictured above) that I used for my previous two pairs of sailor trousers. Using this would make sense because A) I already own the pattern, B) am confident of the construction process, and C) know the fit issues. But it's a bit boring using the same pattern, isn't it?!


Then there's this Sailor Style Pants pattern that is available for download on the Burdastyle website, but I think I may also own the copy of the Burda mag that originally featured this pattern. I like the variation in style where the front pleats are trapped down by the buttons. I think this would look great in a fabric that has quite a bit of drape, so possibly not the most appropriate garment for a shitty Winter like the one we are currently looking down the barrel at. 


Whilst we are mining the wealth of patterns on Burdastyle, check out these bad boys pictured above. I'm not too sure about the waistband element as those tend to give me trapped wind (TMI?! Another result of having given birth is that I no longer have any shame!) but they are mighty handsome strides, let's make no mistake! Obvs I wouldn't bother with the back pocket coz I'm a lazy-arse. 


And then there's the Hot Patterns Riviera Hello, Sailor! Pants pattern. I like the leg shape of these but my current sewing machine does not have a one-step button hole function so I'm kind of baulking at the prospects of all those buttons! If I did go for this one I'd omit the tie-back feature. 


My final offering for your perusal is the Kwik Sew 3854 pictured above. Technically a shorts pattern, I'm sure these could be elongated with little bother. A somewhat subtler version which also has an added benefit in that I already own this pattern having bought it just before I became pregnant and therefore has yet to be used.

So there we have it peops, what are your thoughts? Which should I use to form the basis of my next sewing project? Has anyone used any of these and feel it could be recommended or should be avoided? Or do you know of any other sailor trousers/pants/shorts patterns that you think I should use? Thanks in advance! 

21 comments:

Jane said...

I think sailor slacks are the perfect choice for a bit of in-between sewing until you want to make more fitted stuff again. I made a pair using simplicity 2654 which I think is out of print, but you can borrow mine if you like the look of them. Blogged here: http://www.handmadejane.co.uk/2011/10/finished-sailor-trousers.html
I can vouch that they're super comfortable too. Of the patterns you featured I LOVE the kwik sew shorts pattern. Good luck my love and Happy Christmas! xx

Lovenicky said...

Enjoy your little bundle while it's still little. The first 3 months of my first baby was also a haze to me but now that I'm thinking back, I learned a lot about myself during that period.

I personally like the Hot Pattern's Sailor pants. It seems to give more shape to the legs. I know it's a lot of buttons (I don't have a 1 step buttonhole sewing machine neither) but just the shape of the trousers looks nice to me!

johanna@projects by me said...

I also favour the Kwik sew shorts (as Jane did). I saw them made up somewehere and they looked so fab that I've been thinking of buying the pattern myself.

Happy Holidays!

vintagerockchick said...

Good to hear that you are beginning to have the time and inclination to at least THINK about sewing again. I'd definitely go for the tried and tested pattern, or the first Burda download one - but that's because I much prefer trousers and skirts without waistbands - they don't suit my shape. Being a fellow lazy arse, when I find a pattern I like and get the fit right, I'm never to proud to make it again. And again. Just done my second Tiramisu, and there will definitely be more, it's a lovely pattern.
Sorry, just rambling now. Hope you have a lovely Christmas x

Tilly said...

Hello Zoe, and hooray for doing some sewing! Personally I like the Kwik Sew ones the best. Enjoy and let's catch up soon xx

Jenny said...

I would definitely go with Burda 8488. When sewing time is hard to come by, I would always aim for result over experiment.

AnaJan Stepalica said...

You can also use the Bella pattern from BurdaStyle, and alter it the way I did. I really like these pants, and recommend the pattern

Cherie said...

IMHO, I like the Hot Patterns pant and the Kwik Sew short/pant. OTOH, a pattern you already know gets the job done quickly. You could narrow the upper leg a bit to match the Hot Patterns lines.

Good to hear from you, your little one will learn to sew quickly!

Catherine said...

For a first project with a three month old... go for a TNT :-) Less frustrating!

Then go for one of the new ones...

clippedcurves said...

I put out a similar call on my blog in the summer and Gjeometry suggested Butterick 4214 - it's a vintage cullotte with the desired bib front. I managed to track it down and it is queuing patiently. Also if you wanted to avoid button holes you could go down the large press stud and mock button on the outside route!

Jacq C said...

Hi Zoe, I really like the Kwik Sew but I think I might stick with the TNT given your limited time available for sewing. Have a wonderful first Christmas with your litte girl :)

Jenna Bennett said...

Hi Zoe! I love the shorts pattern but don't know that I would be bothered with elongating so would probably stick with the ones you've made before. Merry Christmas!! xx

angela said...

I have not used any of those but the shorts pattern looks cute with the wide waist band.

Jen said...

As I read this I'm also nursing Aonghus and lamenting my inability to sew much for Christmas gifts. I owe each of my girls a dress and I owe Tallon a chef's outfit, all of which were planned as presents.

I have the Hot Patterns sailor pants pattern on my list of things to sew - but I happen to have a 1-step buttonhole on y machine, so those don't intimidate me. Maybe do a pair with the TNT pattern, then do the Hot Patterns pant later in the year. Maybe as a sew-along? It would motivate me to actually get to them!

Merry Christmas !

French Toast Tasha said...

Hi Zoe! Fitting pants to my shape is such an intimidating process that I'm planning on just using the two I have and tweaking them to different shapes, um, forever, so I would obviously vote for the pattern you've tried and liked! Especially since you've got a lot of other things to worry about right now. For me anyway, if I'm busy/stressed out and my project is too complicated, then I just won't pick it up.
Merry Christmas to you and your little family!

chrichri said...

Hi :-) just wanted to weigh in with my 2 cents...I think the shorts' pattern look good too and they remind me of a pattern I've muslined 5 (?) times: the "iris" short by Colette patterns. The reason I've tried to muslin it so many times is solely because I'm outside the size range and grading up this much is a complicated task;-) it has few pattern pieces and is very straight forward. Otherwise you could also try Colette's wide leg trouser pattern "juniper". Not tried it myself but looks like it would suit the look you're looking for :-)

Fabric Tragic said...

Hey there, I like the kwik sew shorts pattern, but as others have said if you are time poor your previous burda may be more sensible.... A compromise would be doing the kwik sew as shorts for your muslin to avoid wasting fabric....look forward to whatever you make!

Philippa said...

Hello! All the patterns look fab so can't help there (sorry) but just wanted to say nice to hear from you again and glad you are starting to think about a bit of sewing...Btw I love the Offset Warehouse and will be using the code, thank you!

Scooter said...

I've made the HotPatterns one, and while I lurves the anatomically-correct drop front (cause I'm a big Nerd), two cautions: One, it takes forever to get in and out, so def. include an invisible zip, since you probably need to pee quick and often with a new babe in the house, and two, the crotch curve is more of an "L". Like you, burdas fit me fairly well, but the HotPatterns curve just didn't work for me at all. YMMV, natch.

I applaud your sailor pant dreams though!

Miche said...

I love the sailor style pants and the sailor shorts! Not having a one step button holer would be terrible for that. I used to think they were unnecessary, but I'm so glad my machine has one. Anyway, love the wide leg idea - I've been stuck in a jegging/skinny jean rut for awhile. Can't wait to see how they turn out!

Miche from Buttons and Birdcages

Amy said...

Haha, the heaven/hell of the baby tornado. That totally describes my life right now. Here's to many sewing opportunities for you in the coming year.

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