I made Winter Pants

originally published 4/4/11


… it was a mistake OK?  I know that summer is right around the corner.  I didn’t intend to make winter clothing.  Here’s what happened.  I purchased 3 cuts of a cotton/silk fabric.  I used one in a pair of pants that I just loved.  As expected, they were cool in the summer.  Unexpected, put on tights and they were fine for the winter.  DH even said they looked comfortable; and he said  “Don’t misunderstand. They don’t look sloppy.”  Now isnt’ that what we keep asking for? Clothing that looks nice, feels nice and is a step up from sweats and running shorts?  But of course every fabric has it’s downsides.  This one slowly shrinks both width and lengthwise.  Fortunately, I was slowly shrinking too and could continue to wear these pants for nearly 2 years.  Finally, not even the hem could be let out and it was time to say good-bye and make up the other 2 cuts.  But these had one other downside.  The look great in the morning until early afternoon.  Then the wrinkles start accumulating and by the end of the day, the pants look really worn and rumpled.  A trip through the washer and dryer and we set again.


Now, I’m pretty sure I can delay the shrinking issue by just washing on delicate instead of throwing the next pair in with the jeans.  But the wrinkling?  How can I control the wrinkling?  Then I remember a pair of pants I had while still working.  They were 100% wool and underlined in a crepe-backed satin.  I could wear them all day long, crawl under desks and up laddes into the ceiling.  At the end of the day, there were few if any wrinkles which dropped out if the pants were left hanging free (not stuffed in the closet between other clothing items).   I know that completely underlining, and block-fusing really help garments keep their shape and resist wrinkles.  I’ve heard others say that just a completely lining helps resist wrinkles and I certainly see that with my vests.  So I thought would that help with the cotton/silk pants?


It was worth a try, except….   I knew I didn’t want to line with polyester, acetate or any substantial lining.  My objective here is cool, long-leg summer pants.  A hefty lining would completely defeat my objective.  I looked for a light fusible interfacing.  But didn’t find anything I thought would be light enough.  I looked at silk organza and chiffon.  Decided I would deal with the wrinkles before paying those prices for lining everyday pants.  I thought and asked on SG about a cotton organza.  But most didn’t think it would help the wrinkle problem and would add too much warmth.  I finally settled on a poly/cotton guaze.  Not cheesecloth but fine thread, transparent poly/cotton fabric.  I delibertyly included the polyester.  I’ve seen cotton guaze wrinkle.  But polyester is famous for resisting wrinkles. So I proceeded to cut my next pair of pants from the cotton/silk with a ploly/cotton underlining.


I used my favorite TJ906 pattern; limited my top stitching to the pockets and hemmed at 1.5 inches.  I didn’t even have them finished when I realized that these are going to be great pants.  Great WINTER pants that is.  The 2 layers of fabric are just a lot of weight.  But they do look nice.