On Saturday, while our beloved contractor was tearing an ever larger hole in the middle of our house,* I was on the other side of the wall from him, in my little workroom, keeping myself occupied by sewing up the other pair of pants I had cut out a few weeks ago. These are the same as all my other modified Robbie pants — my “toddlers” — with the caveat that each pair varies slightly in the rise and/or the thigh. (That’s in addition to the more major modifications shared by them all: my own pockets, longer legs, wider hems, totally different waistband.) Between the fabric and the particular tweaks I made when cutting this one, this is basically the pair I’ve been wanting the whole time; what I’ve always wished the denim pair to be. The fabric here is 100% recycled cotton — denim industry waste, woven into a heavy canvas. The light-denim color combined with this silhouette makes them feel a little bit 1970s, in a good way. And despite a hilarious number of thread issues along the way,** I’m extremely pleased with them.
These and the natural canvas pair are sure to be the cornerstones of my summer wardrobe this year, which I’ll be getting into the planning for tomorrow! I promise photos of them on me in the course of all that. These never look like much on the hanger …
• Pattern: Robbie Pant by Tessuti (reuse No. 6, whoa)
• Modifications: self-drafted pockets, assorted tweaks, modified 2″ waistband
• Fabric: 100% recycled cotton canvas, not commercially available anywhere that I know of
*If you haven’t seen it in my Instagram Stories, we’re remodeling our bathroom, which — as they do — keeps turning into a bigger and bigger job than expected.
**Thread 1 was garbage, so I switched to thread 2, which ran out an inch shy of my finishing the waistband top-stitching, so then came thread 3, followed by the bobbin (still thread 1) running out just short of the second hem being complete (finished with thread 3). And since I only use natural thread in my serger, there are a total of four different threads used here! lol
PREVIOUSLY in FOs: The sweatshirt vest
I’m impressed with your patience and the thread. I would have been so frustrated, that I might have had a wine break.
It was actually comical. Fortunately, I have a lot of blue thread to choose from!
Love your recycled pants! Was the heavy canvas a bear to sew?
I made my first pair of Robbies last week and wore them out to dinner on Saturday night. They are so comfy! I’ve printed your tute on the waistband and next time will make mine your way, but I didn’t have the wide elastic for this pair, so used their pattern and instructions. I’m very impressed with the pants, and know why you are too!
These are the heaviest pair I’ve sewn — this fabric is a bit stiffer than the natural canvas of the previous pair — and it was evident when I was top-stitching the inseams down through the leg, which is always the tedious part anyway! But my machine handled it all like a champ, even the rugged terrain of the waistband topstitch, through all those layers of pocket/pant/waistband …
Hi Karen, was wondering if you ever posted on your self-drafted pockets on these pants? I just did a quick search of your blog and didn’t see anything, but I might have missed it. If you haven’t, would you consider such a post?
I haven’t. The back pockets are just rectangles and the front pockets are rectangles with one corner lopped off, so you could just figure out how big you’d like yours to be …
Thanks! That helps!
You say they don’t look like much on the hanger, but I can tell they’re gonna be so cute! And that blue is so sublime. And at six times around, the pattern is practically free now. Yay! Also, she who has never hidden a kaleidoscope of thread (and thread quality) within a beautiful FO has simply never sewn a stitch. ;)
It makes them special, right? ;)
Hi Karen, I’d love your pocket pattern too! and notes on what you did to the rise… looks like they are even along the top and not lower in the front? I’m a new sewist (but knitter for many many years) so mods to sewing patterns are still a mystery to me.
The front is definitely lower than the back, but I have lowered the center-top back by 1″ so they’re not quite so high in the back.
For some of us that have too much front pouf already, I try to do flat front elastic pants. Nice when the fabric is heavier but not as necessary if using lightweight cottons.
I really like your wide hems! 1.5”?
These all have 2″ hems. I lengthened the Robbie by (I think) 2″ to start with, and then I turn 1″ and 2″ for the final hem.
Joining in as a big fan of this pants pattern and the way you’re creating it. Just hanging on the door like that the “I Want!” factor comes right up. Not happy with tightness around my waist, so I tend to buy lower-rise pants. I’m thinking I could ease up on the tightness of the elastic to prevent the feeling of pressure. Hmmm….
Yeah, how tight you make your elastic is obvs up to you, and does affect where they sit and how they hang.
A comment on one of your threads being “garbage”…the owner of the sewing machine store I patronize in San Francisco sells and only sews with “Madeira” thread made in Germany. She has shown me samples of stitching with your standard Joann’s thread vs. the Madeira, and there is a marked difference in the neatness of the stitches. For what it’s worth, you might give it a try. The only limitation I see is that it’s not as available in retail stores and the colors a more limited. But it certainly solved some of my serger sewing difficulties (i.e.jamming of the machine).
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