Hey! It’s Shorts on the Line time! Have you been following along this series hosted by imagine gnats and small + friendly? If not, you can catch up here. So many awesome shorts have been shared during Week 1!
I was excited to join in the series, but Yuki doesn’t wear shorts, so I figured I’d make some shorts for the baby. But then Britex so generously offered to provide me with some fabric and I couldn’t turn that down. And when Britex offers you fabric you don’t use it on your 10 month old baby who will literally just poo poo on it. So I decided to sew for myself and use the one shorts pattern I own for women but had never sewn, which is Colette’s Iris Shorts. I bought this pattern in August of 2012, people. 2 years ago!! So I’m really glad I got this push to finally try it.
This is definitely not a new pattern – you’ve probably seen it before. But sewing a fitted pair of bottoms for myself is definitely a new thing for me. There’s no elastic on this waistband, so that means that it actually has to fit! A good challenge, not easy for my body, but the kind of project that makes you feel quite proud when you’re done!
My waist is really thick, so it’s hard to find an appropriate size on the chart. If I go with my waist measurement, the hips and thighs are huuuuge, and if I go with my hip measurement, the waistband would never zip up. So I picked a size close to my waist measurement (probably sized down, since I tend to wear my pants pretty low) and then had to take some major width out of the sides and from the inseam. It took some time playing around with the pattern (I was working with a muslin), but in the end, it worked!
The shorts close with an invisible zipper on the side and have pockets hidden in a side seam. Besides fixing the fit issues, the shorts themselves are relatively easy to sew up. The pockets come together neatly and the only tricky skill you’d need is installing an invisible zipper, but Colette has a useful video and photo tutorial to reference!
Though you can’t see it, the pattern calls for lining fabric for the pocket bag and I used Kaffe Fasset’s Persian Vase in Brown. Such a small detail that is nearly invisible, but I love it!
Here’s an awkward and overexposed picture of me showing you the waistband. Look, my shorts fit!
And an awkward picture of my butt. 😛 There are two darts in the back here that are hard to see, but I ended up making them deeper by about an inch since they were puckering a bit in the muslin. One thing I would add to the shorts if I ever made them again, would be welt pockets in the back. I also debated hand stitching the hems to make them less visible, and I’m thinking I should maybe go back and do that . . . What do you think?
The fabric I used is this Midweight Rust Linen & Viscose Blend (made in Italy!) that Geana from Britex recommended for the pattern. It’s beautiful and feels so lovely! It’s got a little bit of stretch to it and is a tad slippery, so I honestly had some trouble cutting the fabric perfectly, but it was easy to sew and so comfortable to wear (though it does wrinkle a bit, as you can see). And you know it’s high quality, so it feels a bit fancy too 🙂
In the end, I’m glad I tried these shorts and worked the fit issues until I got something that I can wear. It’s definitely not perfect and I have a lot to learn about fitting garments, but it was a good challenge! The Iris Shorts are labeled a beginner pattern and I would say that if your measurements match their size chart, definitely go for it. If your body does not match their size charts, be prepared for some fitting work. I’m thinking it’s time for me to read a book or take a course if I want to keep making clothes for myself that fit! But that’s the great thing about sewing – there’s always more to learn and so many great people to teach us!
Thanks Rachael and Carla for inviting me to participate in Shorts on the Line and for pushing me to sew some shorts for myself!
Siiigh . . . anyone else feel like summer is already coming to end?
This post is part of the Shorts on the Line sewalong.
Shorts on the Line 2014 is sponsored by:
Britex Fabrics, Hawthorne Threads, miss matatabi, and Soak Wash.
Hosted by imagine gnats, small + friendly, and Kollabora.