Persephone Pants

Does anyone else find the fashion trends that sweep the sewing community online interesting? I try not to jump on the newest, shiniest, most popular patterns on Instagram, so I’m a little late to the Persephone Party, but I’ve been planning these since I started seeing them popping up all over my feed! I do love the cropped-wide-leg silhouette, and the Persephone Pants by Anna Allen seemed to fit everyone who made them beautifully, so I decided to give them a crack. I have to admit that I had never heard of the Kamm Pant that these are modeled on, but 1940’s sailor style trousers are definitely something I’m in to…

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I sewed these up using a bottle green wool twill that I picked up cheaply at one of The Fabric Warehouse’s pop up sales. It’s completely rigid, but is reasonably lightweight and I thought it would be a good alternative for the canvas that is recommended for the pattern. the buttons for the fly and waistband and the cotton for the pocket bags all came from my stash too, pleasingly. I’m trying to ‘shop my stash’ as much as possible, so it’s nice to have used up some random bits and bobs! I was especially glad to find a button for the waistband which is a pretty close match for the wool, I really like the way it looks.

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The buttons for the fly are not quite such a good colour match, but as they’re hidden I thought they’d be ok. I secured the piece of the fly with the buttonholes to the fly facing with a row of horizontal stitches between each buttonhole before topstitching it down, as suggested on the Tessuti blog, and it’s really helped to keep the fly sitting flat and covering the buttons, rather than pulling away at the centre front. The only other place I deviated from the instructions was when I was cutting out the pocket bags. I thought I was being really clever and saving on bulk by cutting all four pocket bags from the Liberty scraps I was using, but I didn’t think about the fact that there is no pocket facing or anything to camouflage the opening of the pockets under the waistband. If I had followed the instructions and used the main fabric for the back piece of each pocket the opening wouldn’t have been so obvious! I thought I might get away with it, but when I put them on for the first time I realised that the peek of pale cotton at the waistband made it look like the waistband was pulling away from the trouser legs and exposing my knickers! Not quite what I was going for… I wasn’t game to unpick everything to fix my mistake though, so I cheated and just slip-stitched the pockets closed. I wasn’t likely to use them anyway…

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For a pattern with no side seams, I think the fit across the front is really pretty good. I was a bit disheartened to see those wrinkles across the front of my hips, but I think that’s just a hazard of trousers in a non-stretch woven. Looking at the photos of the back though I think I need to make some adjustments before I use this pattern again. Maybe some more length in the back crotch curve? I’ll need to compare it to my adjusted Maritime Shorts pattern so see how different the shape is. I’ve seen similar wrinkles on other versions on Instagram, but haven’t seen anyone talking about how to fix them!

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Look at that lack of side seams! This was a really fun pattern to put together, there were some really nice details included in the pattern and instructions, though I did have to pay a bit more attention to the seam allowances than usual as they change depending on the area under construction. The required seam allowances were well documented on both the pattern pieces and at each step in the instructions, but I do tend to go onto autopilot sometimes! It’s nice to sew something that kept me on my toes. I do wish that the PDF pattern had been slightly more user friendly, there is no page printing guide to help with printing only one view, and the way that it’s laid out meant that there was no way to print only the pieces for the size 6 trousers that I was sewing instead of the fly pieces and waistbands for every size. But at least I’ve already got the pattern all printed and stuck together for the shorts as well, which I’m definitely planning to sew for summer!

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I am going to have to sew some body suits or some full bum high waisted knickers to wear under these to cut down on the wrinkles and bumps left by tucking things in. In the summer at least I can just wear cropped tops with them and cut down on the tucking in! I also might add some back pockets to the shorts when I make them, just to break up the back view a little bit. The true high waist on this pattern means that there is a large expanse of unbroken fabric for the back view… I’m not sure if patch pockets like the ones from the Lander Pants or mock welt pockets would look best.

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All in all I’m really happy with these trousers, I love the 70’s feel they have with the cropped length, and I think they look pretty cute with my clogs! I took 2 inches off the hem to make them a bit more cropped, they were sitting at that slightly awkward ”just on the top of my shoe” length as drafted and it didn’t look quite right. A longer, full length pair would look good though…

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12 thoughts on “Persephone Pants

  1. Hi Kirstie, love the colour and they look great on you ๐Ÿ™‚ if you wanted to eliminate some of the drag , You could try straightening up the very slanted back rise and adding a side dart. I did this to mine (only made up a toile ) and it helped. I also scooped out back crotch seam, as it is drafted for a very peer bottom … If you lay your short pattern that fits on top , you can also mark the side seam placement for a dart . Let me know if you want me to send a diagram

    1. Thanks Anita, I hadnโ€™t even considered the angle of the back rise! Iโ€™ll need to compare it to a couple of patterns I think. I want to try to avoid side darts, but itโ€™s good to know they work if I need them ๐Ÿ˜Š

  2. Hi Kirstin,
    Its worth a try, even to make up quickly in calico to see result, best way to learn ๐Ÿ™‚ By changing the angle it helps the way the back of pants hang and helps to eliminate the lines . You hardly notice the dart ! Try the back crotch shape also this will help some. Good luck ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. Hi Kirstie, I am referring to your blog post as I make my Persephone Pants. Your pants look great on you and they look like they fit really well. My legs are enormous, pants that is, on my chicken like legs. They are big right up to the top of the legs and then I branch out and fill them up!! but it does make for a bit of a baggy bum .Did you take in your pants legs at all? Thanks

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