After a bit of a leave of absence to accommodate a little camping holiday in Devon, I finally have the pink culottes ready and photographed for you. Because everybody needs a pair of hot pink gaucho trousers in their wardrobe, am I right?
It’s been a bit emotional to say the least, as I’ve been working on them for ages and had all sorts of mishaps, but finally, they are here in all their hot pink glory! And not a moment too soon, I just love wearing them, and that’s what sewing your clothes are made to make you feel.
It’s not a secret I love culottes, I think it’s the only aspect of the latest fashion I actually like, so they have been on my sewing list for a long time. I got the inspiration for the hot pink colour from last year’s Named Mimosa culottes, with a fuchsia sample. I had this fabric in my stash for years and ta-dah, it all came together!
At least in the planning department…. Because in the execution department, it all went pear-shaped. I had to recut the legs because I cut in one layer to match the stripes and forgot to flip the pattern piece. Luckily, I had enough fabric to cut them again, whew! Then I put it all together and when I wore them the first time, I realised I had used a zipper without auto-lock and I spent the entire day worrying I’m flashing my knickers because my fly was down. So I had to unpick the whole shebang to change the zipper. But it turned out to be a good thing, as I redid the waistband and it’s now much more comfortable. Plus it was a good thing to practice the front-fly zipper and the waistband insertion, so win-win!
So let’s get the deets.
Pattern: Vogue V9032, classic front pleated trousers with front fly and contoured waistband, with slanted side pockets.
I cut View A, wider leg, size 12, based on finished measurements on the pattern.
Fabric: It’s a mystery poly-something, with woven-in stripes and a bit of stretch. I got it a long time ago in a bargain bundle from Abakhan. I had about 2.7m of it but ended up using all of it because of the cutting-out incident.
I really expected better crease resistance, but it really crinkles, so I have to iron them before I wear them every time *frown face*.
Alterations: I chose the pattern because of the front fly zip and the contour waistband, but I was hoping they would be a bit wider in the leg. So I slashed and spread from the waist to add in another 10 cm in the front and 10 cm in the back leg, to obtain the culottes shape. I used freezer paper to fill in the space, I just love that stuff for pattern alterations.
I generally followed the instructions or at least peeked at them to check I’m on the right track. I definitely did not follow them for the zipper fly and waistband and used Sara Alm’s tutorials instead (which I reviewed here).
This was the first time I sewed a proper front fly zipper, not a mock fly, mind you! I did a practice run and then ended up inserting the darn thing twice, but I think I got it now. I also used Sara’s burrito method for closing off the waistband, which again was a big revelation. I made a mistake and use a different seam allowance at one end of the waistband compared to the other, so they don’t quite overlap perfectly, but I could not be bothered to unpick it again. The first time I cut the waistband on the grain, but it proved to be a bit too unyielding. So the second time I cut it on the bias and used a lighter interfacing and it’s so much more comfortable now. I finished it with bias tape and then sewed in the ditch from the right side. I love this method because it ensures you always catch the facing’s edge and it’s all nicely finished on the inside.
I really like this pattern, they fit great, and I really liked the princess seams on the back for extra curvy comfort. I also liked the slanted pockets, the contour waistband and the fact that I can now sew front fly zippers!
I am so happy I took the time to go back and finish them. I love wearing them, in spite of the few mistakes. I’ve been wearing mostly dresses for work usually, but I love having a pair of bottoms that are both office-y and fun, and which I can dress up or down according to the occasion. I wore them with stiletto heels and a shirt to work, but they also go with my grey converse and a t-shirt. And they are so comfortable to wear, feels like wearing a skirt, but without the flashing opportunities :D. Also, I feel they could make a nice addition to my capsule wardrobe, in spite of the bright colour, they go great with black, white, navy, so the possibilities are endless.
In these pics, I’ve paired them with a turtleneck t-shirt, my trusty Mona biker jacket and some low heel shoes for a casual chic vibe. I hope you’ve noticed my matching pink zipper earnings, it’s all about the accessories, isn’t it?
Have a fab week, everyone, full of colour and things you love to wear!
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