Big Orange Trousers

I didn’t intend to be posting again so soon, but I realised I couldn’t let the year end without blogging about one of my favourite garments of 2017! It should come as no great surprise that it’s a pair of Flint Trousers, a pattern which has become quite the TnT for me. I loved the pattern as soon as Megan Neilson released it, but I’ve surprised myself with how wearable I’ve found them, and how much I love swanning about in them. I thought they’d be an occasional wear when I made my first pair, but I’ve now made four pairs (three sets of trousers and one pair of shorts, yet to be blogged), and I’ve been living in them this summer. My black swishy ones are a favourite for the hot, humid weather we’ve been having, but these ones are a surprise favourite for dressing up or down, or whenever I feel like I need a bit of extra confidence!

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The fabric is a gorgeous cotton sateen from The Fabric Store, which I bought in winter intending to make some high waisted pegged trousers (I still can’t find a pattern for what I want, suggestions appreciated!), but changed my mind and made these when I got back from the UK after seeing cropped, wide legged trousers on so many stylish ladies over there. I finished these in October, I’m not sure why it’s taken me so long to get photos of them!

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I love the colour so much! I’m surprised at how wearable I’ve found this pair, given how big and orange they are. I love them with my cropped Willow Tanks, but they look good with any of my striped tee shirts, and with most of my Ogden Cami’s as well. Maybe terracotta is a secret neutral? I wore them to my work Christmas party (the one I made my Eve dress for, but which I couldn’t wear because the weather was rubbish) with this striped Willow and some black heels, and then I wore them again for Christmas day with my cropped black Willow (I was planning to wear my Eve dress then too but the weather was, once again, rubbish). I felt pretty fancy and very comfortable both days!

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I had a terrible time trying to find a pair of buttons that worked on this colour, until I remembered that I had two bamboo flower buttons from Arrow Mountain left over from another project. I thought they might be a bit small, but I think they work OK. I did make the buttonholes a tiny bit short, so squeezing the irregular shape of the flowers through them can be a bit of an effort! They’re loosening up with wear though, thankfully…

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I’ve got a wrinkle of fabric just below the waistband on this pair which doesn’t show up on my crepe pair. I think it’s because this is a stiffer, more tightly woven fabric than the poly crepe of my first ones, so it doesn’t drape nicely around my sway back. I didn’t notice it until I had hand stitched down the waistband, and it doesn’t bother me that much, so I haven’t fixed it. I did take a wedge off the top CB of the pattern, tapering to nothing towards the side seam, before I made my black pair, and that seems to have fixed it! I really don’t have anything else to say about these that I haven’t said in my other Flint posts, I just really like them and wanted to get them up on the blog so that I could include them in my Top 5 favourites post…

I hope you’re all enjoying the holiday season, however/whatever you celebrate. I’ve eaten way too much over the past few days, finished one of my christmas books already, watched Die Hard and some Harry Potter movies, and napped with the cats in the sun. It’s been good so far! Happy holidays and see you in 2018.

 

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‘Locked and loaded

Its finally here!

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I’ve been talking about making a long sleeved merino version of the Megan Nielsen Briar top since my first post on this blog, and here she finally is! Just in time for another cold snap. Its like I planned it this way…

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The most exciting thing about this top is that its the first thing i’ve ever made on an overlocker! I’m borrowing one from my not-quite-MIL, and it was surprisingly easy to figure out how to work. The only thing that freaked me out was how expensive the thread was! It cost me over $40 for the four cones of polyester thread, I almost passed out at the till! Next time I’ll look at spotlight, rather than the local craft supplies shop, and see if its any cheaper…

I only made a few changes from the first version I made, the major one was taking almost two inches out of the centre back. It fits much more snugly across the back of my shoulders now, which is nice. The merino is also slightly more stretchy than the cotton I used for version 1. I used the neck binding option again, just because I prefer how it looks. I should try making a standard neckband one day! Instead of putting a pocket on my Briar, I used the curved pocket pattern piece and cut two out of some super thin, soft leather to use as shoulder patches.

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I topstitched the leather down just using standard cotton and my usual machine needle, as the leather was so fine and soft that I didn’t feel like I needed anything special! I really like the way the leather looks with the merino, it lifts it up a bit, and makes it less ordinary.

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The only part of this top that I’m less than thrilled with is the hem, its just a bit wobbly. The bobbin tension seems to have been a bit off, as there is a bit of a pucker between the lines of stitching from the twin needle. i’m not entirely sure how that happened, as the sleeve hem is perfect, and I didn’t fiddle with anything between sewing those and the hem! I may unpick it and re-sew it, I’ll see how much it annoys me when I’m wearing it! Its a brilliant pattern, I’m sure this won’t be my last Briar…

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I’m so excited about my overlocker success, its going to make my plan of a winter snuggled up in many layers of merino wool much more achievable!