Sunday, 27 December 2015

Secret Shorts

I have had my eye on the Tania culottes by Megan Nielsen for a long time. I have seen many cool versions in the blog world, and I love the simplicity of Meg's patterns. But I'm not going to lie, the main reason that I really wanted to make these culottes is because I really struggle with bare legs in the summer! I can tell you stories and stories of days out and holidays ruined by the dreaded chub rub, and I saw these beauties as the end to my walking woes. 

Is it a skirt? Or shorts? 
I made size XL (one thing I really dislike about MN patterns is the minuscule waists) and I lengthened them by six inches all the way round. To do this, I extended the length at the seams, as suggested in this helpful tutorial. Staying true to form, I used some Cotton+Steel rayon from the Frock collection: this time it was Gemstone in Navy. 

Seeing them taking shape was quite exciting, as I have never made shorts or pants before. The construction was pretty quick and straightforward. I struggled with the first invisible zipper that I tried because I had the iron a tad too hot and so it distorted under the heat. I didn't realise how much it had until I had sewn it in! So, I unpicked it and tried with another, without ironing this time. I think that next time I make these I will try inserting the zip at the back as I would like to see how that hangs. 

All revealed...
Now here's another thing that I have to be honest about: I just could not be bothered to hem these babies so they sat in my sewing pile for around two months! The hems are just so wide, as indicated in the photo above. I didn't measure, but there must be at least three metres of hem. I'm not very patient when it comes to hemming (and actually finishing my garments...) at the best of times and I just couldn't face doing this. It was so hot during the summer and I really struggled to get much finished without throwing it on the floor in frustration at the heat, with sweat pouring down my face! But then came along the perfect reason to finish these: our BC Day trip to Portland at the beginning of August. I knew that we would be doing lots of walking around the city and therefore the perfect chance to try out my new defenders. 

The verdict? They worked a charm! No rubbing and the fabric was lovely and cool on a 38 degree day. I am really happy with how they worked out. I like the length, and where they sit on my waist. Once I find some good fabric, I will definitely replicate these! 

Beautiful roses
We had an amazing time in Portland. It was nice to be there when the sun was shining (and it was a lot warmer than the previous time we had passed through). We walked up to the International Rose Test Garden, and ate and drank copious amounts of local food and beer. We also went to some of the best sewing shops that I have ever been in, as well as the Pendleton factory for some super cheap fabric. So much to sew, so little time!