Once the temperature started to hit 55 regularly, spring was officially in the air, and I knew I had to make some warm weather clothes. This is the Pacific Northwest, though, which has glorious summers (that start in July) and rainy, cool springs, so I guess I'm getting ahead of myself a bit. These are the Sewaholic Thurlow shorts, and they're pretty great.
This is the second time I've made these. The first time was in this old-man-in-an-awesome-way suiting fabric, and they just didn't work. I loved the fabric, but it was too thin, too scratchy, too synthetic, too drapey -- too wrong. But this time around, with a nice denim-y, canvas-y fabric, I'm pleased as punch. I got this from fabric.com eons ago, and I almost took it to Our Fabric Stash til it hit me: these'd make some great Thurlows. I did my first muslin of them at least a year and a half ago, so at this rate, I'll complete the navy twill pair that I have in mind in, oh, 2016. But I digress.
I didn't make any modifications to the pattern. Well, that's sort of true -- I must've lined things up with the wrong notch when inserting the fly, or sewn the triangle of the tab slightly weird, or something, because I was missing about an inch on the waistband. I just chopped off the tab, attached a little more waistband and facing, stuck it back on the waistband, shrugged, and moved on. Everything seems right, so whatever weird thing I did wasn't too big a deal, apparently! I also could probably take about a half inch out of the back CB seam at the waist, but it's close enough that I can't be bothered to unpick and redo. I left off the belt loops, because I think any belt would dork these up too much (though maybe a braided brown leather belt...).
They fit almost perfectly, but there's some weirdness along the front. This photo's sort of blurry and generally crappy, but see that folding right in the middle? I can't tell if that's just a thing that shorts do, especially when you have fuller thighs like the classic Sewaholic figure, or if there's some minor adjustment that would bring these into perfection. After pouring over Pants for Real People and the awesome fit cheat sheet at Colette, and after pinching out fabric and pulling and prodding the actual shorts, I just don't know. Usually, with RTW, I have to choose either having the waist fit and having crazy smile lines, etc from the hips being too small, or the waist being too big and the legs too baggy but the hips fitting -- big, obvious problems. But this, it's so subtle, and I'm stumped. It's not pulling in any place I can tell, and I guess I can't imagine any fabric behaving differently -- maybe it's just the curse of the pear? But aside from that enduring mystery, I'm so pleased with the fit of these. I might nip the legs in a bit more, because the legs are on the wider side, but I'll decide for sure after wearing them more.
This is my second time doing welt pockets, and I gotta say, they're boss. Though next time, I might take a leaf out of Lauren's book and make them deep enough to hold an iPhone.
I bought a bunch of 4" zippers from the Zipper Stop in nice, basic black, so I'm set for pants zippers for the foreseeable future. If you were wondering where in the world to find these weird zippers, may I recommend these -- they're fantastic YKK zippers that're the same kind you find in RTW jeans. Can't be beat.
I actually finished these a few weeks ago, but pro tip: if you want to make yourself feel super dorky, take photos of yourself wearing shorts. I always find it hard to photograph something that I've just finished, and then to review photos on the same day they were taken. I'm way too harsh, and my perspective is all out of whack. When I go back to Lightroom a few days later, I change most of my ratings and generally like everything a lot more. I guess that means that after spending hours focusing on first the details of construction, and then the mechanics of a photo shoot, my brain needs a break to reset and see it as a garment, the finished unit, and not just the details. I hated all of these photos after I took them -- and sure, again, taking photos of yourself in shorts is a fast train to Dork City) -- but now, I'm a lot more pleased with the project and the photos.
So, how do you like that sweet black background? It's actually what just happened to be on the cutting table, and I like it for these photos! I preordered the Colette knits book and their two new patterns, so I see a Moneta in my very near future. Maybe I'll write more when that's up, but I'm not excessively impressed with the Colette book. It's all great advice, but though I'm by no means an expert sewer of knits, I found it really basic. Some of the photos were impossible, and some of the tips could've used more fleshing out. It's great if you literally have never sewn knits before, but I read the whole thing and only picked up one tip: let your knits rest on your table for 24 hours or longer before cutting (hence the fabric laying out!), since they can be wrapped tightly in the factory and need time to relax. But more on that later!
Speaking of Colette, I've been diligently working on the Wardrobe Architect project. I have a notebook full of notes, a private Pinterest board bursting with inspiration, and a baby Polyvore account all in the service of this big project. I've found it really helpful to focus my efforts, and honestly, it's basically changed how I work and how I look at my style and sewing. More on that later, too!