Burda Dec 2012 Style 148


I was very focused on OttobreDesign patterns before the December 2012 issue of Burda Style arrived.  I subscribe to both the Burda Style and Burda Plus magazines, for now. I do this because while my measurements put me in the top of the Burda Style sizes (44) I’m more comfortable wearing Burda pants which are one size larger. My size pant is rarely in Burda Style so I was somewhat astonished to see these.  You could have knocked me over with a feather, though, when I realized that these are slim fitting.  For some reason Burda has decided that women over a size 44 should not be allowed to make slim fitting pants.  OK that’s my opinion but it’s based on the fact that I have 3 current years, 3 old years and numerous plus sized issues (dating back to 1992) none of which contain a slim fitting pant for the larger ladies.    I always think this is odd.  The average woman is 5’5″ and 150 pounds.  Put a billowing leg on her and she looks 4’5″ and 550 pounds.  But I digress…

I was thrilled to find this pattern.  The magazine has only been in my hands 3 days. I’ve already traced the pattern (size 46 everywhere except tracing size 48 back inseam and scooping just a bit out of the back crotch curve).   I’ve also selected my fabric.  It is a light-blue narrow-wale corduroy.  Pretty sure I picked this up thinking jacket. But since I rarely wear jackets, I’ve started using such cuts for pants.  Did I mention this was a stretch cotton?  Lots of stretch, at least 30% which will work perfectly for this pattern.

This fabric has been in my stash a long time. At least 10 years.  I think it may have languished there because I wear corduroy only in the winter months and therefore sew with it for only about 6-8 weeks each year.   But also this is an odd blue.  It doesn’t match easily; hasn’t matched with any other garment I’ve sewn.  This blue has been diluted with a dab of some other color and then has been lightened considerably.  It is a very complex color and would work best with a contrasting color. Being that I like to dress monochromatically, I was pleased to have a big ol- left over piece.  I had enough to also cut one of my favorite vests, Kwik Sew  3185. But I’ll discuss that on my other blog.

The pattern calls for a straight waistband.  I know some of you ladies despise that the straight waistband so it’s only fair to warn you about the issue.  The pattern calls for a 2″ wide waistband (folded in half and stitched down) located at the natural waist.  I prefer a slightly wider waistband and made mine 3″.   There are also 4 darts (2 front 2 back) which I think might be dispensed with, depending upon the stretch of the fabric.  It’s an idea for a future pair but already I’m thinking this pattern has potential as a pull-on pant.

It also has a side zipper. Even though I’m fairly confident with how Burda pants fit me, I’m still cautious especially with the first use of any pattern.  Pants are tricky to fit on me.  Add to that the stretch in one fabric is almost guaranteed not to match the stretch of another and I decide to add a fudge factor.  For the first pair, I cut the side seam allowances 3/4″ wide.  I’ll serge the side seams at 1/4″ and then take the sides in as needed.  Can’t do that easily if I have a side zipper.  I did consider using a back zipper, but to be honest, the front fly zipper is my favorite and really easy to adapt.  So I changed the zipper to a front zipper and ignored the zippered lower legs.  I may use  all those zipper options in the future, but not this first pair.

Being that I’m shorter than the Burda standard, I did not add additional for the hems.  I will forever be grateful to Nancy Erickson who made this hemming suggestion: “straighten the last 3″ on each side of the leg”.  You’re really only adding one to 3/8″ at the very bottom of the leg.  So the flare is not greatly affected. However your hemming is.  When stitching you don’t have to angle in and then angle out.  If the hem needs to be shorter it easily turns up without anything wonky at the seams.  Similarly if the leg turns out to be a bit short, it easy to add a grosgrain ribbon or facing without any wonkiness in the legs where you did that angle in angle out stitching.

On the downside, I’m hoping this is not a legging/jegging. I certainly didn’t catch that by looking at the models.  Then of course, I  can rarely tell what a garment really looks like based on Burda’s Fashion Fotos. Nonetheless, I don’t care to wear pants as tight as my long johns.  These are stated to finish at 12 7/8″.  I’m presuming that’s the size 44 and each size will be slightly larger.  With the half-inch side seams, I’ve already added 2″ to the torso and 1″ to each leg.  Then because I use a back inseam 1 size larger, another 3/8″ is added to each leg.  Instead of 12 7/8″, my leg should finish 14″.  14″ is close, but not jegging.  Wish me luck!


Burda Style Feb 2011 #136 with Waistband!

ETA 11/27/2012:  I’ve had a chance to wear these now and can say I’m really pleased.  They may be a tiny bit too long in the crotch and slightly tight in the waist.  The waist is easy to fix–move the button over.  The crotch depth, I won’t mess with on this pair.  I will trim about 3/16″ from the top of the pattern before making this waistband version a second time.

Sorry no pics.  My fabric is a stretchy, narrow-wale corduroy in espresso — a brown so dark you would swear it was black.  Being that dark the photos all look like blobs.

This is the pattern which has been tweaked to the point of looking and sewing like the famous Loes Hines European pants. I love the fit and styling but sometimes have issues with bulk at the pocket tops and yardage requirements.  For these reasons I decided to adapt the pattern for use with a straight waistband.  I traced the pattern pieces and removed 3″ from the top of the front, back and pocket pieces.   I know that if I’m really tight on fabric I can remove another 2″ from the hem and either face the pant legs or use a grosgrain ribbon.  I still have not adapted the pattern for a crotch gusset, the ultimate fabric conservator (when it comes to pants).  Each piece added, of course adds sewing time– time to cut, time to stitch and time to press.  But with certain fabrics I find the trade desirable.

I serged all the seams together permanently except the waistband.  It’s a bit of over confidence, I know, but I’ve made the pattern so many times that I AM confident in the fit.  I stitched the waistband to the pant using a 3.5 mm stitch length.  I find that length holds but is still easy to rip should I find that to be necessary.  I used a button and buttonhole closure.  I debated at using a hook and eye because they are easily moveable.  I decided the real issue was going to be was the crotch now the right length i.e. had I removed too much or not enough from the top of the pattern to make room for the separate waistband.  Fortunately during fitting the crotch felt fine because I don’t know what I’ll do if the crotch is too short.

Reading that back it sounds confusing. Yes I did try the pants on to check the fit and they felt fine.  My trouble is that I don’t notice a lot of issues until after I’ve worn the garment for a while.  So a neckline isn’t choking when first tried but may be so after several hours of wear. In like manner, a pair of pants my look great and feel fine, but after several hours of wearing feel uncomfortable or I see my privates outlined by the fabric –never a good look.   It is that 3-8 hour wearing that has not yet occurred and will generate the final verdict of did I alter the pattern correctly or not.  It’s possible  I will be returning to this post to add subsequent changes.