originally published 7/8/11
??? While, as in my last paragraph posted on July 7, I may be thinking about a very creative project, my sewing has been devoted to necessities… necessities for the season. Yes indeed, summer has arrived in Midwest USA all the way to the most northern states. While this isn’t a bad thing (no no no this is a very very good event from many perspectives) it still requires a few personal changes. Most notable, I need appropriate wear for 102+ degree heat. I’m prepared with sleeveless tops (and tanks appropriate for a Midwestern Senior Citizen), but I also need skirts and pants appropriate for the warmer weather. I’d given up super shorts long ago, but I do most certainly wear and enjoy Bermuda shorts, the ankle length pants and shorts somewhere between knee and ummm 6″ above the knee. (I definitely prefer to avoid exposing any pub!c fur.)
I still consider Burda 2010-06-115 to be The Perfect Bermuda Shorts for me. At the same time, I think that if Burda produced a perfect pant for me, other pants designed by Bermuda should be pretty darn good. So I was extremely surprised when Burda 2010-04-143 looked great, but didn’t feel so good. I made this pattern a short by folding the pattern up at the knee mark and adding a little extra at the hem so it would fold, stitch and hem easily. Well, the hemming was great. In fact, 99.9% of the entire pant was great. I noticed no problems during sewing or fit. Not until I wore the first of 3 pairs did I realize I had an issue. My issue? The back crotch rubbed on my tail bone. I don’t know how else to explain it. Photos looked fine; attractive even. But wear was uncomfortable. I describe the fit in the link above and I’m not going to repeat that other than to say that for the last 3 days I’ve been sewing shorts for current weather wear because the first 3 pairs didn’t do it for me.
Oy and the new version is terrific. My first 2 pairs were sewn from beefy cotton/poly interlock knits I knew when I purchased these 2 fabrics that there wasn’t enough for much more than a tank top or short-shorts. In fact, I was darn happy to be able to carve out the shorts. My wonderful fabrics (they are that) were in dark blue/navy and black. I probably could have construct sleeveless tops of some kind, but truth is these two dark color are best used in my wardrobe as bottoms i.e. short shorts. I used the dark blue first. I was hoping (ridiculously) that I would be able to play in photoshop and see details. Good idea, but didn’t work. Well, here’s the evaluation:
I used the dark blue, poly-cotton interlock with Burda 2010-04-143 after alterations made to the back crotch as described in the link above. I made no other alterations to the pattern despite the fact that the pattern was drafted for woven fabrics and I was using a knit. I cut a separate waistband. But knowing myself, I fished out a previously used length of 1″wide, non-roll elastic for use in the waistband. I folded the front along the vertical center line and carefully top stitched close to the fold (on both side fronts). Although I cut along the dart markings at the waistline, I skipped darts both front and back. I just sort of evened off the top waistband and ignored the dart for both this and the black pair next in line. I serged the fronts, backs, sides, inseams and crotches together and then tried it on.
I was a little concerned about even trying to fit. My previous experience has been that my best fit is achieved by sewing darts, inserting zipper and attaching pockets permanently and then basting everything, including the waistband and hems. Although it’s a great deal of trouble, this does produce the best possible fit for me. But I knew these were to be quite similar to gym shorts -no pockets, pull-on, elastic waistband, flexible knit— hard to visualize as attractive but easy to remember how useful they were.
Well, first try said they were humongous. As in much too large. I trimmed 3/8″ from the sides, basted and tried again. OK better, but still much more form concealing than form enhancing. Another 3/8 side seam trim and baste later, (not more than 15 minutes) and these looked, well not too bad. NOW UNDERSTAND THIS: I’m not a pretty young thing (PYT). It’s been so long since I enjoy that status that I don’t remember it. In fact, I’m not an up-and-coming anything, i.e a powerful female executive or Middle Aged Community Anchor or anything else. I am officially a US.. Mid-Western… Senior Citizen (even on the days I feel like a PYT) and I dress like one too.
You know what? Once I stitched the sides and hems permanently, added the waistband and elastic; and tried this first pair on—– I was pleasantly surprised. They both looked and felt comfortable. —
OK ’nuff for this post. Shall we continue tomorrow
(BTW just in case you were wondering about the title: “3 in 2.5” means 3 pairs of shorts in 2.5 days).