Brown Shorts for Summer Collections

As my planning posts  were being published,  I was able to return to my sewing room. Finally I’ve healed enough to navigate the stairs. I knew what I wanted to sew: summer weight, brown shorts, black jeans, and blue dress slacks.  My machines were threaded with brown. It was a no brainer to sew the brown summer shorts first.

I looked for brown fabrics in my “Under 2’s Stash”  That’s the cuts that have been reduced to under 2 yards. Too big to throw away but not big enough for  every imaginable garment.  I find cuts that are about 1 yard up to 2 yards long are excellent for summer clothing and crafts.  I keep these segregated so that I can find them easily and use them up. Otherwise these small cuts frustrate me. I can’t find them when I want them. When I don’t want them, they’re all I can pull out of the stash.  Lo and behold, there is 1-5/8 yard of brown corduroy in the Under 2’s. It’s the only brown fabric in the Under 2’s. I looked over my brown stash, because I really didn’t want to sew corduroy for summer. But the brown stash didn’t contain any light weight pant fabrics. I scoured the blue and black stashes and found that I  didn’t have much that will work as light weight pants.   I Placed an order through Fashion Fabrics Club but they won’t be here for another week to 10 days.   I  look again at the brown  remnant in the Under 2’s.  I purchased 2 cuts of this particular corduroy.  It was labeled as Baby Corduroy. It is a fine pin wale and heavenly soft.  So soft that it made poor looking pants.  I was always rumpled looking. Like I had just leaped out of bed. Those pants didn’t stay in my closet long.  The remnant sat in the stash for 2 years or better. I decided for the sake of getting things started, I  would use this soft corduroy which would be fine for all but the highest temperatures South Dakota can throw at me.

I also didn’t want to spend a lot of time fitting. Since the latest PP113 is near perfect, I opted to use it by folding the leg up-and-out-of-the-way  about 6″ about the knee line. I also wanted a quick sew. I opted to draft a cut on waist band. Which is  very simple to do.  My straight waistband is 3.5″ wide. I wanted and elastic waistband which looks best if it is folded in half lengthwise and edge stitched along the fold. I added 1/4″ to allow for top stitching 1/8″ away from the fold. I cut tissue 3.75″ wide and the entire length of front waist. Cut a second the entire length of the back waist. I pinned the tissue to my existing pattern along my waistband stitching line.

I also opted to use the MSS pocket.  This pocket is an extension on the back which is placed beneath the side front and to stitched. The front pocket must be finished before hand. I’m not giving the whole secret of the pocket away because I feel the MSS pant by Louise Cutting has several neat tricks that are well worth paying for. The pocket is just one.  Creating this pocket entails a change in my normal construction order. Not a big deal.  The real draw back is that you don’t want to try to adapt for fit after the pocket is sewn. In fact the instructions for the pocket say that it is assumed you have already fit a muslin and need no fitting adjustments.   When I choose to use the MSS pocket, I know I have to be will to accept the final fit whatever it is.

I had my tissue changes made, fabric cut and pants sewn in about 4 hours. I did not stop for fitting. Because of the pocket, either the fit works for me or the final garment is donated.  This really is a winning version of PP113. Easy sew; the pocket is flat against the body. There is some gathering at the waist due to no darts and the elasticized waistband.

My photos are from the point of adjusting the elastic. Every elastic seems slightly different.  The only way to be sure that the elastic is tight enough without being too tight is by trying it on. After these pictures, I removed 2″ length making my Walmart 1″ elastic 32″ long.  Then I butted the edges together on top of a 1″ bias tape remanent and stitched the edges to the bias tape. This gives me a flat, very flat, elastic join.  After that I stretched and snapped the elastic several times rearranging the distribution of the waistband over the elastic. I make a point of telling this, because the final short hangs a bit differently from the pics. Also, the pics have been lighted 55%. The corduroy is a nice deep chestnut-brown which photos as well as black.

So not the best looking pants in the closet. As far as fit goes, I mean. I like the details. See how the pocket opening is practically invisible? I do think I want to shorten the pants just a little more. This is not the best length for me. Overall, I’m happy with my new shorts. Especially happy because they now complete my Basic Brown Summer Collection:

2 thoughts on “Brown Shorts for Summer Collections”

  1. beverly–so glad to hear that you’re recovering. will continue to pray. the shorts are cute and they go so well with your pink capsule!–anne

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