Paper Bag Princess

Did anyone else have the book ‘The Paper Bag Princess‘ when they were a kid? I loved it, that sassy, dragon tricking princess was a definite early role model! The book really has nothing to do with this blog post or my latest pair of trousers, other than the trousers having a paper bag waist…but I’m really scraping the bottom of the barrel for post titles at the moment! Anyway, its a great book, and this is a great pattern, so forgive the tenuous link. Moving right along…

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These awesome, 90’s-esque trousers are McCalls 7726, and I totally overlooked this pattern until I saw Ruby’s great versions. I’ve never had great luck with paper bag waists, they tend to look a bit weird with my short torso, like my boobs are emerging straight out of the ruffle! Luckily the proportions of this pattern work pretty well for me, I think the lack of a definite waist helps. There isn’t any elastic or anything, just the stitched down pleats and the sash, so its easier to keep them slightly below the smallest part of my waist. The pattern has several versions, and I chose the cropped, pegged leg version. I’m super keen to try the wide legged version for summer!

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I used a lovely wool crepe from my stash to make these, and it’s lovely to wear! My previous attempt at making wool crepe trousers wasn’t so successful, because the fabric was a bit scratchy (and cheap, it got all pill-y), but this stuff seems much smoother and drapier, and isn’t at all scratchy, so that’s a relief! It does make the sash pretty bulky, but I’m feeling the drama of the big bow! I might get a ribbon or something to swap out with it if i want something a bit more streamlined. I used some scraps of Atelier Brunette cotton in those lovely deep pockets to cut down on bulk, and I love the little peek I get when I look down.

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It’s been ages since I sewed a big 4 pattern, but this one is really great. It did take me a while to sort through the acres of pattern tissue to find the right pieces, but once I had that sorted out it was a pretty simple pattern to put together. The instructions for the fly were a bit interesting, but I found that if I just looked at each step in isolation rather than trying to run through the whole lot in my head beforehand like I usually do then it was less confusing! I’m not sure if i’d do it that way next time, but it’s turned out pretty neatly.

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I’m super happy with the fit of these, it was just what I was looking for in a pair of pegged trousers. I really wanted an alternative to skinny jeans for winter, I find wide legged trousers too drafty in Wellington for winter! I also think these will be good for dressing up with heels and an ogden cami or one of my cropped tops, I’m looking forward to having a play around with seeing how they fit into my wardrobe! I’m pretty sure this won’t be my last pair of these trousers…

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8 thoughts on “Paper Bag Princess

  1. They look good. They’re a style I like the look of on others, but not too sure how they’d look on me. Pity you don’t live in Auckland, then I could try them on.

  2. You look very French chic in these! And yes, I’m familiar with the Paper Bag Princess. I even dressed up for a Halloween party in university as the PBP, but no-one knew who I was! One guy asked if I was a bag of groceries. Oh the memories!

  3. Dang, every time I think “I’ll never trace this pattern, I should just donate it already” a rad pair of trousers like this reels me back in!! These look awesome on you. Also I LOVE The Paper Bag Princess – I worked for a camp where every day for two weeks the kids requested that book, and I never got sick of it.

    1. It’s a great pattern! I just cut mine out, I’m too impatient to trace πŸ˜‚ The Paper Bag Princess is such a good book for kids, I’ve given it to a few friends recently!

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