aka ‘I can’t decide where to crop these pants!” #shortpersonproblems
These are the Megan Nielson Flint Pants (typing this on a Sunday night so excuse rambling – questions? Ask in the comments below).
I whipped these up fairly quickly then hit an epic state of indecision about length. They are drafted for 5 foot 9… which my 5 foot 4 falls a little short of.
So once I finished the main part of construction I think they lived in the WIP pile for about 3-4 weeks before I fixed up the waistband issue (later in post) and the length decision.
Wide leg cropped pants or shorts with unique crossover closure at the side seam. Pattern sits on the natural waist and features hidden closure at the left pocket , release tucks at the front, darts at the back, slash pockets, two waistband options and two lengths.
Version 1 is a pair of above ankle cropped pants with button closures. Version 2 is a pair of above ankle cropped pants with tie closure. Version 3 is a pair of shorts with button closures. Version 4 is a pair of shorts with tie closures.
Sizing: XS-XL (each pattern includes all sizes)
Finished waist measurements range from: 26 inches to 34 inches
Finished hip measurements range from: 39 to 46 7/8 inches
I sat on the cusp of XS, verging towards S (actual body measurements – which you can find here) and opted for more ease around my hips and decided to make S. Plenty of room but I think I would stick with this size. The crotch feels quite ‘low’ but doesn’t look like I’m having an MC Hammer moment so the comfort factor is a winner for me. Perhaps a XS might have sat up higher and closer to my actualy waistline. The pockets sit nicely and don’t pull out of shape when I slip my hands into them.
Perfect weekend or holiday pants for me.LOVES
AO Pattern Sheets: I purchased the PDF pattern. Megan Nielson provides A0 files (as well as A4/US letter) and that makes me far more inclined to purchase! Yes, it is expensive to print 3 A0 sheets but being time poor I’m happy to pay for the service. I’ve printed far too many A4 sheets, felt sick at the thought of sticking them together and find an easier option.Construction: EASY. Clear and well illustrated instructions. I opted for a trouser slide closures and two snaps rather than buttons or the waist tie (as cute as that is!).
Fit: To be honest when I first put them on, I did a slight happy dance about the butt and hip fit. They are comfortable and don’t seem to do ‘weird stuff’ or pulling when I move – walk my enormous dog at the beach. The folds you see here have more to do with the intermittent sea breeze and grappling with an over-excited large athletic dog that unexpectedly flips about like a possessed soggy noodle.ISSUES
Length: Waaaaay too long for me. Tall sewists rejoice – this one is for you! Perhaps this cropped wide leg thing isn’t for me… but surely everyone needs one pair of ‘big comfy pants’?
Construction: Ummmmm… pretty sure I had a sewing idiot moment and my closure is on the wrong side. Good news? I appear to be ambidextrous in regards to dressing/undressing. I’ve managed to get them on and off without a problem and you can’t tell as I don’t want to wear them with a bodysuit (Rowan) so I’m ok with being a left/right/whatever oddball.Waistband: I used a heavier interfacing on my first waistband. It stood away from my waist/back and I think the ‘straight’ design of the waistband didn’t help much either. I dithered about this problem for a fortnight, whether I could live with it. Decided I couldn’t. Dithered some more. After doing a little research I made a new waistband pattern (personally couldn’t call it ‘drafting’ as I’m not that technical) and put on a new waistband and used lighter interfacing (teach me to just use ‘whatever’!). I unpicked the existing waistband and reattached the new one (two pieces – outer and inner pieces). Worth the effort. So much better!
How to alter the waistband? I drew a line along the centre of the waistband lengthwise. I added a seam allowance and cut along this line. I then almost cut through the pattern piece at the sides and centre back – leaving enough to create a ‘hinge’. I lapped the cut 1/4 inches at the side and 1/2 inch at the centre back. I’m not technical and found some of the online tutorials really helpful but more detailed than I needed them to be (for an non-techno person like me). However, here are a few if you are interested: Handmade by Heather, A Fashionable Stitch, and In The Folds. My recommendation? Read them all, google some more and use whatever bits make the best sense to you.Length: I found these sooooo long but then they aren’t drafted for my height. Firstly I cut them off at the finished length… then I think I cut off another 3 inches before hemming them. I still feel a little odd in them. Maybe I’d prefer them in heels but heck, they are so damn comfortable I’m happy enough in my billowing tencel denim pants, bare foot on the beach.
I quite like them. Despite my reservations about the leg fullness and my height (or lack of) in cropped wide pants. For me, they are more casual wear, I’m probably still more inclined to wear slim, straight jeans or higher waisted wide-legged trousers for ‘occasions’. However for an autumn afternoon at the beach I was pleasantly surprised by how comfortable and at ease I felt in them.
They are incredibly comfortable and I’m much happier with them after altering the waistband piece. I think they would have ended up in the ‘unworn pile’ without that simple adjustment. they sit and look much better around my waist. I am so glad I procrastinated and then went back and fixed them rather than just thinking ‘that will do’.
Personally, I think I’d recommended a fabric with some drape for this design. I suspect they would look, move and fall very differently in something with more structure. I like the way they swish in this soft tencel denim, very comfortable and flowing.
I’d rather like to try these as shorts with the tie waist option. I don’t wear shorts often but it seems to be appealing to me.
Pattern: Flint Pants/Shorts, Megan Nielson (purchased by me)
Fabric: Tencel denim, Spotlight Australia. This one doesn’t seem to crush as much as tencel denim usually does!
Also See: Megan Nielson Tester Round-up | Bimble & Pimble
In case you have been missing the little chap… Banjo returns
Other news… running
I’m still running… yes, surprised even me – which explains the MASSIVE Garmin watch I’m sporting in these photos, it keeps me motivated so I wear it like an exercise newbie/nerd. I feel so much better, physically and mentally. Maybe it’s the ‘time out’ it provides me and the post exercise buzz.
I find myself loving Park Run (maybe not so much at the time) and in a supportive local running group called The Plodders. I don’t feel like a ‘runner’ but I feel the urge to run and the desire to ‘do better’ whether it’s pace or distance.I never ran much as a child/teen. I was not disgraceful considering my ‘zero’ training, I’d just go out and run when I had to. Sometimes ending up at zone for cross country or on the school relay team for sprints – I wasn’t considered athletic so I never trained, I was ‘academic’ ‘musical’ and definitely not a ‘sporty girl’. Then at boarding school, one of my teachers entered me into a 10km race. I was 16. I’d never run that far and I was outraged about having to run 10km in a ‘race’ in the middle of the day. The heat nearly finished me, I was dry retching at the end (charming) but came second in my age group… it put me off for a long time. He told me at the time “I think you’re ‘a runner’. You don’t see it in yourself. One day you will.” Time will tell.
My Park Run record is now 27.02 minutes (my first ‘running’ Park Run was 32.23 on 4 February 2017). I volunteered at this week’s Park Run so I set out to achieve a PB in the afternoon and knocked out a 25.27 5km much to my surprise (and pride). I’ve entered a 10km event in June (South West Rocks), July (Gold Coast), September (Forster)… and will also do the Sydney City to Surf. Why not?
Running has given me back my ‘mojo’, confidence or whatever it is. I feel energised, inspired and more myself than I have in a long time. Not just for running, but sewing, work and more. Sometimes you can’t change things, you simply need to change your attitude.