Burda 08/2011 #136: Pleated Trousers

After the success of the last three slim fitting trousers, I wanted to continue experimenting with styles and silhouettes.  My bottom half is quite firmly in the Burda Plus range, unless I want to adjust patterns excessively (which I cannot be bothered to do unless severely pressed), so I thought I would trace off this little gem from Burda 8-2011-136 and see how it went.  I don’t always like the way Burda styles curvy women – the proportions are all wrong and the fit is always 1,000,000,000 miles off of anything a self-respecting woman with curves would want to wear, in my not-so-humble opinion.  But I was curious to see what some of the styles they put out in the plus range looked like on someone like me i.e. not young and statuesque.

Burda 8-2011-136 drawing

I chose to make this pair out of tencel denim from EOS. I had some misgivings about making trousers from the fabric, as it’s quite drapey, and my previous experience of anything tencel or rayon includes horrible wrinkling and pilling. But this is a medium-weight poly-rayon-elastene blend, tightly woven, and although I’ve been wearing the trousers all morning, you can see the fabric doesn’t really hold onto the wrinkles, thanks to the polyester, I’m sure.

I’m not completely comfortable with the style of these trousers on me. They are a rather loose fit, and I sometimes feel like they are too loose while I’m wearing them, but they look as though they fit well enough in the photos.  Opinions?

My tops change in these photos – I was trying to see what would look OK with the trousers, as I really like the fabric and I’m totally in love with the colour.  I find mirrors don’t often offer an accurate perspective on ratio or proportion. This is with Vogue 1093, a Donna Karan pattern that I made up in 2010, I think, and almost never wear because it’s just such a statement, and I don’t always like people staring at me as I walk through parking lots or whatever…

Burda 8-2011-136 Vogue 1093

You can see the top of a tank top made from silk jersey at the neckline.  I’m planning a post on that top shortly.

And me rolling up the hems for the next set of pictures….

Burda 8-2011-136 tabs

And what they look like with the tabs doing their job.  The top is Vogue 1245.

Burda 8-2011-136 rolled

I have to say, the inseam tends to roll down to my ankles after wearing them for a bit…

Burda 10-2010-118, rolled trousers

The front crotch depth is very long – I even shortened it as per my usual pattern adjustments – but check out this action shot. I noticed in the Burda magazine photo there doesn’t seem to be so much length on the model, so I really don’t know what happened.

Burda 8-2011-136

I love the details on the back. I left of the superfluous centre back waistband button tab. I just couldn’t see the point.  The pockets are faux, as I didn’t want the bulk of the pocket bags on my backside.

Burda 8-2011-136 details

And a close up of the hemline tabs.

Burda 8-2011-136 hem tabs

Well, whatever the fashion police verdict on these trousers is, they’re in my wardrobe, and I’ve been wearing them quite happily. I’m pleasantly surprised at how many random pieces in my closet actually work quite nicely with them.

How about you? Taken a style risk lately?


…of my wardrobe, of course!  I’ve sewn up a couple of skirts for my summer wardrobe, and it’s all been from stash.  How lovely it feels to be working through my stash!  There’s a tremendous amount of pleasure in pulling out a piece and making something that will be worn and used and therefore justify the purchase!  It’s also a good conscience cleanser.  I don’t know about you, but sometimes my own personal fabric store can be rather menacing at times.

Vogue 1247I’ve made up another skirt from Vogue 1247 in the same colour, although the fabric is different.  My first chocolate version was linen, underlined in cotton voile.  It was OK.  I added a lot of length to it to bring it to my knees, and I just wasn’t that happy with it.  Don’t get me wrong.  I wore it a lot, but eventually the linen started to fray at the bottom of the CB invisible zip (can you believe it?) and it was time to send it away.  I regret not cannibalizing it now, but I was going through a spring wardrobe cleaning fix and never bothered.  My current version is in a poly/cottton twill that will wear like Teflon, I’m sure.  I didn’t bother underlining it, and I only lengthened it by about 10cm this time instead of 10 inches.  haha!

Vogue 1247 skirtHere’s the requisite inside shot of this skirt.  I love how the inside looks with all the seam binding.  A lot of extra fussing, but it’s so pretty when one pulls it on!

Vogue 1247 interiorThe other basic I’ve added to my wardrobe is another version of Vogue 1093 which I’ve made up a couple of times. I just love the seaming on this skirt pattern, and it fits me well through the high hip and waist, which is always a challenge for me. The fabric is a love-inspiring caramel-coloured stretch cotton sateen that’s from stash.

Vogue 1093 skirtI lowered the top of the back slit by 6 inches.  The pattern as designed has the slit start just beneath the booty, which is ridiculous. Ri-di-cu-lous. I remember the first version I didn’t bother to check on it, and I had to stitch it down to a reasonable depth.  As this skirt stands, if I just plain bend over and touch my toes, it’s basically swimsuit coverage length.  Ha!

Vogue 1093 skirt 3I’ve been sitting and getting in and out of the car all day in this skirt, and it has held up well in terms of the fabric not stretching out of shape.  It was a roll end purchased from Linda at EmmaOneSock and there wasn’t enough to cut the skirt on the straight grain, so I squeeeeeezed it out on the cross grain, which, of course, means that the stretch in this cotton is lengthwise instead of crosswise in the garment. After wearing it all day I haven’t noticed that it’s made much of a difference.  And that is a testament to the quality of stretch wovens sold by EOS.  I have always been horridly disappointed in the lack of recovery in a lot of stretch fabrics purchased in my local Fashion District or Fabricland.  However, every single stretch anything I’ve ordered from Linda has washed, worn and recovered brilliantly.

Vogue 1093 skirt (2)The length is a bit long-ish – I may really fall in love with a couple inches shorter – but I think one skirt of this longer length in my closet creates a good mix of choice. Now we just need summer weather to arrive in this town.  It’s been raining and cheerless for the last week!  TTFN!

Waiting for Notions

Well, I’ve cut out my Marfy 1313 dress from a of a mid-weight washed linen, sort of blushy coloured.  But I decided the bemberg lining I had in my stash wasn’t going to add the anti-wrinkle support this dress needs so it doesn’t bag out of shape while wearing.  So I went to ThaiSilks.com and ordered habotai, and now I have to wait for it to arrive before I jump into this project.  It’s kinda funny how a use-up-stuff-from-my-stash-only project always ends up with additional expenses that technically make it not a stash-only venture.

And it’s also kinda funny (in a most annoying way) how no fabric shop in the entire fashion district carries any china silk in colours other than black, ivory or white.

So, in the meantime, I’ve kept myself busy with another Donna Karan pattern – Vogue 1093.  No changes or creativity – just as close as possible to the picture on the pattern.

I really like this outfit – it’s got some personality.  I had a bit of challenge with the fabric for the jacket at certain points of the construction process.  The fabric tended to fray a little bit, and needed to be held together with small patches of interfacing at the following points:

  1. the top of the vent for the sleeve cuff.
  2. the pocket facing and point-edge that you can see centre-front of the buttons.  The buttons actually help hold in place two pleats that form the fullness of the pocket.

This took some time to put together.  The skirt went together in about 2 hours, but the jacket took me about 3 afternoons.  I must say I was really pleased with the collar – it’s drafted really well and rolls be-yew-ti-fully – just the way a big dramatic collar should roll.

detail of the jacket