Tuesday, 28 April 2015

Twisted Tuesday pattern tour

 

Hi, I'm pretty excited to welcome you to the start of the Twisted Tuesdays blog series showcasing the Twisted Trousers pattern by Laura of Titchy Threads.

Before we get started let's outline the deal. I was given the pattern for free in exchange for sewing it up and some blog advertorial. That's cool with me. Obviously it will influence me somewhat, that's been proven over and over. But I hope you'll trust that I'm as honest as I can be....


Well, I love them! The Twisted Trousers are a great compromise between smart trousers and comfy track pants. They've got all the details of a good pair of jeans or slacks with front and back pockets and a coin pocket, but with the kid friendly comfort of an elastic waistband.

And they're twisty, of course!


The side seams twist around to the front and the inseams twist to the back. It makes for a very odd looking pattern piece and consequently they take a little more fabric when cutting than a straight seamed trouser. They way they twist I can't imagine anyone's going to start plaid matching with this pattern!

But with a solid fabric and the optional piping, the seams look awesome!


I went all out with this pair and piped the pockets as well. The instructions are there for adding piping everywhere you could possibly want to, or for skipping the piping and keeping it simple.

I'm not going to pretend this was a quick sew. It wasn't. But oh boy was it worth taking my time over. Come on, let's have a look at the insides...


The front pockets have a pocket bag, which I thought was snazzy enough, but then look at that little facing as well to prevent any inside pocket peeking out. Just perfect!

The instructions for the pocket bag had me sew a French seam, and boy does it give a nice finish.

 
They were looking so neat, I started to feel a bit let down by the colour of my interfacing on the faux fly. Why didn't I have pinkish interfacing in my stash to match this denim?! Given that there's no zipper, using fabric as sturdy as denim I don't think the interfacing is necessary. Feel free to skip it so your insides look their very best!

The back pockets didn't want to miss out on being fancy. They're lined!


By a very happy coincidence (or due to having too big a fabric stash perhaps) I happened to have some coral Ottobre ribbing which was a perfect match for the waistband.

The only negative in making these pants was nothing to do with the pattern; but trying to neatly insert the cheap grommets that you can buy at the large chain store fabric shop is a complete shit of a job! The accuracy required to strike those things vertically enough to get them to insert cleanly is simply not achievable by a human. I'd suggest buttonholes, or buying a better grommet set.


For A I made a straight size 4 and the fit is just fine. I could possibly have made the elastic in the waist a little tighter, but hey, I sew after the kids are in bed, so it's guess work a lot of the time.

I could have stopped there, but it was actually P who needed more long pants for winter. You know you're enjoying a pattern when you plunge straight back in for a second go.


His are size 6 with 2" length added. This is definitely a pattern where the length needs to be added where the pattern indicates. Those twisty legs aren't going to let you cut a longer hem! I split the pattern, added the length and re-drew the line and it all came together perfectly.


I thought some jeans style topstitching would show off the twisted seams nicely. All that required was a slightly different order of sewing the legs so that I could have the side seam flat in order to topstitch it.

By this time I wasn't referencing the instructions as often as I had first time, and I really appreciated the Cheat Sheet that was included. The main instructions are detailed, photo heavy and best viewed on a tablet or computer. But for repeat sewers, the brave, or those who just hate having to refresh the tablet screen (me!) there is a non illustrated cheat sheet of instructions which can easily be printed and kept on the sewing table.


I was starting to impress myself with these jeans too, so I figured I should go all out on the back pockets. A bit of back pocket embellishment is what makes jeans jeans if you ask me.


P is kind of halfway between the toddler fondness for an elastic waist and the big kid ability to be bothered with buttons and zippers. These pants will hopefully look enough like jeans, but feel enough like trackpants to make him happy to wear them.


I used some quilting cotton to make my own cord for the waist. It's more decorative than functional, as the elastic waistband is a full circle. I learned my lesson about pants that need the cords to be tied to keep them up when I made the Sandbox pants for him.


A thin cotton shirting for the pocket bag makes such a difference when you're sewing a thick denim like this. That's the kind of detail I like a pattern to have. That, and notches everywhere and marks for positioning pockets. The Twisted Trousers pattern had all that going on.


So, it's a resounding two thumbs up from me. Plus, if you know what you're doing, the ability to print only the size you want is pretty cool. I wanted both the size 4 and size 6, so I selected both of those layers. Well that was daft, cause then I get one print out to tile together and then I have to trace it anyway.

Still, I don't like cutting paper print outs of PDF patterns to use as they just don't handle nicely. I was probably always going to trace the pattern, but now I wish I'd just printed the lot so that I wouldn't have to print it off again when the kids have outgrown these sizes. Lesson learned.  - and I will need to print it again as the pattern goes up to size 12 and I'm sure I'll use it many times.

Printing in grey scale (cause I'm cheap and my printer ink is pricey) made it hard to see some of the lines for the size 4 pattern. The main pattern sheet can be printed A0 size so there was no excuse not to just take it down to the print shop. Yay for international standard sizing!


While I was tiling the pattern and tracing it, Flipper was watching a movie on TV. I realised I had in front of me, the perfect pattern for a Film Petit gatecrash. (sorry Kristin and Jessica, I couldn't help myself. I'm gatecrashing your party again!)

So, to see another two pair of Twisted Trousers, and my kids going completely mental, come back tomorrow! It's going to be fun...

....and don't forget to stay tuned to the Craftstorming blog for the rest of the Twisted Tuesdays pattern tour. Today you can take a virtual trip to Spain and check out some more Twisted Trousers at Diario de Naii


25 comments:

  1. Love this topstitching in orange! All the details in your pant's daughter are so cute and profesional!

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    1. Thanks Naii, it was nice to "meet" you through the pattern tour.

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  2. Love the sewing! But I especially love that first pictures of your kids. They are just adorable, together in their fantastic handmades.

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    1. Thanks. It's so hard to get good photos of both of them. It's either big hugs and you can't see faces or clothes, or full on wrestling/fight scenes!

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  3. Wow! Both these pairs look amazing and so different. I really like the way you used a solid then a print for the piping and contrast on your daughter's pair, I normally end up going the other way round so I'll have to remember that. The topstitching and pocket design add such cool details on your son's pair too!

    Thanks so much for joining the tour today. I can't wait for tomorrow's post.

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    1. Thanks again for inviting me to join in Laura. I was seriously impressed with the pattern, and I'm fussy, you know!

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  4. I love your sewing - so professional! I wonder if it would bug my kid to have the seam going across the front of her leg like that; she can barely tolerate any seams whatsoever. I do love the waistband as well - again, so professional!

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    1. Thanks Janice. I wonder. It might be more noticeable than a straight seam. I never get that specific kind of feedback from my two. they either like something or they don't but never seem to be able to articulate why.

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  5. Shelly, this is the most excellent and thorough review I've read in a while. I don't think I can make these pants anytime soon because I just have no head space for it, but I might get the patterns for future. I love all good pants patterns, and I *adore* your versions both of them.

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  6. Curious--do you have any thoughts on the piping foot. I don't have one, have often wondered if it is necessary. You have done a fantastic job of piping here, I was wondering what your thoughts are on the issue.

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    1. Thanks for the lovely comment above Asmita! I don't have a piping foot. I tend to use my zipper foot, adjust the needle across and then go by feel. I waver around by a millimetre or two but not enough for it to be problematic unless it was incredibly narrow piping.
      I use the finger nail of my left index finger to find the exact drop off point to the right of the cording and then try to stitch as close as possible. Obviously without stitching into the fingernail of my left index finger!

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  7. Masterpieces! The details (as usual) are the best part, love those jean pockets, and the piping on the pink is perfect. The photos are so cute too. Hope you have one hanging on your wall!

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    1. Thanks Kristi. My husband curates the "best of" collection and I'm sure some of these will make the cut. P was wearing these jeans and his knight hoodie on the weekend and I confess I was pretty pleased with myself thinking "I made all that"!

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  8. Briliant kids pants and those seams lines can let you have a lot of fun. I really like that the pockets have French seams and all that piping and pretty pockets.

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    1. I agree Sharon, it's a good pattern. I'm always apprehensive about indie PDF patterns but I was definitely impressed with the finishing detail on this one.

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  9. I'm totally amazed with the quality of your precious mades. Starting with the first one an all the piping work, then my mind blown away seeing those jeans!!! Great idea to do the contrasting top stitching in the seams, they look very unique. Also I really apreciate the pictures showing the inside, not many people shows that, but for me it is as magical as the outside. Great job.

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    1. Well thank you! It's not always that the insides are pretty enough to show but I really appreciate a pattern that gives finishing tips, so thought I should highlight that. Thanks for stopping by and the lovely comment!

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  10. These are really impressive Shelley. The time you put into them really paid off. They look very fancy schmancy!

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    1. Thanks Ocky. Fancy schmancy was almost exactly the words my mum used.

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  11. What a lot of topstitching! You have very, very lucky kids. My kids considered themselves lucky if they got pockets at all. For most of the daycare/kindy years I refused as they brought the sandpit home with them.

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    1. Oh don't talk to me about sand in pockets! I was devastated when I learned that my son's school has a sandpit. He'll be in high school before I stop getting sand brought home!
      Thanks for the compliments. Time consuming as it is, it's nice to make something that's quite "finished" every now and then.

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  12. How is it that I've seen your 'online' name all over the place but I've only just discovered your blog? (Maybe the completely different name?) Oh what have I been missing?! Love this pattern and love what you've done with it. Off to stalk your archives now :D

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    1. Well I should say how is it that I've never succumbed and bought some of the gorgeous fabrics that you sell at The Drapery! Thanks for stopping by Jane, and for your lovely comment.

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I get a real kick out of knowing you've visited the blog and love to read comments. Thanks.