You may have noticed that elastic waistband pants are having a moment. Due in no little part to stay at home orders, these pants are everywhere right now, and honestly, we hope the trend sticks around for a while because these pants are about as comfortable as they come!
To be fair, many of the patterns we've selected have been around for longer than the pandemic, and given the process of drafting, testing and publishing patterns, the others must have been in the works long before we started hunkering down in our respective houses. But the pandemic has made it all the more clear to us that we need clothes in our wardrobe that are not only fashionable but also comfortable. And these pull-on pants are exactly that.
The beauty of this style of pants is that it can be dressed up or down depending on the top you pair them with or the fabric you choose for them. Plus, sewing-wise, they're easy to fit as pants go and you don't have to futz around with zippers or buttons. And did I mention that they're incredibly versatile? With these kits, you'l not only look good during the pandemic, but you'll be able to emerge from social distancing (at some point in the future) with a gorgeous, handmade wardrobe staple!
So now, without further ado, let's talk about the boxes!
Sew Fearless Box: Free Range Slacks from Sew House Seven
Meet the pattern that inspired this month's theme. After seeing so many beautiful version of these pants on social media, I knew there was something special about this pattern. Though, honestly, coming from Sew House Seven, I should have known that it would be amazing. Their Toaster Sweater is a perennial favorite (I've made two myself), and the style of their patterns are simple and clean, but always with a twist to make them anything but ordinary.
For this pattern, that twist is a side panel that elongates the leg and reduces bulk from the pockets on the side of the leg. With two leg shapes - either a tapered peg or a straight wide leg - this pattern looks amazing on many different body shapes and can be customized to the exact look you want.
Made for lighter weight fabrics, especially linen, the Free Range Slacks allowed us to play with fabrics that will transition beautifully from the heat of August to the cooler nights of September and October. We love the fabrics below and hope you do too!
- Light Gray Brussels Washer Linen - It's no secret that we love Robert Kaufman's Brussels Washer Linen. The combination of linen and viscose creates a fabric that is soft and silky, with a gorgeous semi-fluid drape. This yarn-dyed version in light gray has a lovely heathered look that adds depth and texture. The neutral color allows you play with the color of your tops and shoes to create all sorts of different looks. Go bright for a bold summery look or stay neutral for a serene beachy feel. The possibilities are up to you!
- Dusty Rose 6 oz Twill - People often think of twill as a sturdy weave, like denim, but with the right fiber, it can be light and soft. This cotton twill is medium weight but is supple and thin, making it a perfect choice for these slacks. Plus, the dusty rose is a gorgeous transitional color to take your handmade wardrobe from summer to fall. Not too bright, but definitely not a neutral, you can make a pair of pants that are as unique as you are!
- Army Green Crinkle Cotton Poplin - This poplin is all about the texture! A creped surface, this cotton looks like silk noil, but without the dry clean only care. In a utilitarian army green, this fabric will make for a gorgeous pair of slacks. The poplin has a little crisper drape than the other two fabrics, which makes it well suited for the wide leg version of the pants, but like most cottons, it will soften up with washing so you can be sure your slacks will be oh-so-comfortable!
Sew Confident Box: Arenite Pants from Sew Liberated
I find there to be an interesting dichotomy with the sewing patterns at Sew Liberated. Not every pattern fits with my particular sense of style BUT every time I see one of the patterns out in the world, I want to make it and transform my entire wardrobe to reflect the rural bohemian lifestyle that the patterns embody. Just me?
The Arenite Pants fit exactly into that thought process for me. At first blush, they're not something I've ever owned or made, but I want to own and make them, and I want to be the sort of person who wears such cool pants. Between the slouchy side pockets, the cuffed hem, and the loose, tapered leg, these pants have a ton going for them style-wise. Plus, with a draped fit, they are about as comfy as they come!
These pants call for semi-fluid fabrics, which, when you're talking bottom-weight, leads us immediately to Tencel. The nature of lyocell is that it has great body and that makes it an obvious choice for this pattern. So check them out!
- Tobacco Brown Tencel Twill - I've used this fabric before, and the best word to describe this twill is "buttery." The twill weave is very fine, but it adds a lovely sheen to the fabric, which will really elevate the tobacco brown color. With a supple drape and soft hand, pants in this fabric will feel silky soft against your skin. Plus, they'll look as amazing as they feel! This kit includes chocolate brown ribbing for cuffs.
- Teal Sandwashed Cupro/Viscose Twill - I am a big fan of this viscose/cupro blend, and it is just a dream: supple, deeply saturated and silky, it has all the characteristics of a silk without the upkeep. And this teal color is just gorgeous. These pants will be elegant and one of a kind. Who can ask for anything more? This kit includes black ribbing for cuffs.
- Tencel Indigo Slub Denim - Want the look of denim but with an elastic waist and loose fit? Well this is the fabric for you. The Tencel gives the denim amazing body but without any of the bulk you get with a cotton twill. The dark indigo wash is modern and elegant, a combination that will surely transform these pants into a wardrobe favorite! This kit includes navy blue ribbing for cuffs.
Sew Curvy Box: Calder Pants from Cashmerette
A brand new pattern from Cashmerette, the Calder Pants could not have been better suited for the moment. The easy fit and elastic waist are a perfect combination for loungeable pants, but the flat front of the waistband and the draped leg means you can easily transition them from loungewear to daywear.
There is so much to love about this pattern. Like Cashmerette's other pants patterns, it is drafted for two different pelvis types (apple and pear) so you can choose the fit that best suits you. The hidden side seam pockets are elegant and subtle and the long straight leg elongates the look so you feel taller, even without heels.
Because these pants could either be dressed up or down, you can use a variety of fabrics, depending on the look you're going for. Play with the casual look or denims or cottons for more of a culotte feel or go upscale for a pair of classy work pants (for when we all eventually go back to work in offices and such). The three fabrics on offer are only just the tip of the iceberg!
- Light Wash 6.5 oz Tencel Denim - Embrace your inner 90s with this pale denim fabric. The Tencel gives it nice drape and body and the light blue gives a lived in look, as if these pants are a much loved part of your wardrobe. The denim has a slightly striated look to it, running parallel to the grainline, adding to the elongating nature of the wide, long leg. The perfect fabric when you want the look of denim but not the feel.
- Dusty Rose Silk/Linen Suiting - If you want to make a super luxe pair of pants, this is the fabric for you. A combination of silk and linen, this fabric is a little like a dupioni but with a softer drape from the linen content. The surface of the fabric has a subtle nubbly texture and the color is the stuff of dreams - soft, romantic, and subtle. A pair of pants in this fabric will be your go-to choice when you want to add just that extra bit of indulgence.
- Black Dobby Textured Tencel - A pair of black pants can be seen as a necessity in your closet, but no one said that they had to be boring. This tencel fabric livens up the look with a textured face, thanks to the dobby weave. With an almost braided look and feel, and truly lovely drape, these pants will be both a wardrobe staple and a treasured handmade!
Sew Indulgent Box: Pietra Pants and Shorts from Closet Case Patterns
Part of Closet Case's Rome Collection that came out last year, the Pietra Pants are the second pattern from this collection that we've used. Only one more to go! Just like the Cielo Dress that we used in December, this Pietra Pants reflect a modern and effortless vibe. Evoking hot summer days on vacation, these pants are the perfect sewing project for August, when you're in the midst of sweltering heat and dreaming about the cool summer nights just around the corner.
Like all the patterns this month, the pants feature a comfy elastic waist and loose-fit styling. This pattern is distinguished by some cool design details, like the paneled leg, with a seam running down the center of the leg like a crease, and deep slant pockets. Add to that the flattering flat front, and you've got a pair of pants that you'll love to wear.
Because this is the Sew Indulgent Box, I knew we couldn't stop at one pair of pants. That's why this box will give you not one, but TWO choices of fabric. The first choice will be yardage for full length pants and the second will be for shorts. The fabric choices you make for pants sometimes differ than that of shorts, and this gives you the opportunity to have a little fun with it. And I'm that certain that you'll love the pattern that much, you'll want to make it again!
So let's take at look at the SIX fabric options!
- Turquoise Creped Viscose Linen - This fabric, with a textured creped face, is mostly viscose, giving it amazing softness and drape, with just the right amount of linen for structure and body. Combined, you get a fabric that feels light and airy and perfect for August heat. In a bright turquoise, you can make a pair of statement pants or a fun pair of shorts that will be perfect for the beach or park.
- Mulberry Tencel Twill - This Tencel has brilliant drape which makes it ideal for creating a drapier version on these pants. In a deep mulberry hue, reminiscent of red clay, this fabric is earthy and rich. The stunning color will really shine with this pattern and you'll shine in these pants!
- Black Silk Noil - If you're going to make a pair of black pants, why not make them out of silk, amirite? With a slight numbly texture, this noil fabric has a mildly crisp drape that will work really well for shorts or the wide leg version of the pants. Plus, because it's silk, you'll have a pair of pants that you can dress up for fancier occasions or dress down for everyday wear. An all around versatile pair of trousers!
- Textured Navy Silk Noil - Like the black silk noil, this fabric has the same crisper drape and light hand, but with the added bonus of a woven texture, akin to a basketweave, to add some extra depth and interest. In a saturated navy hue, this fabric will transform into a simply stunning pair of shorts or pants!
- Black Organic Cotton/Hemp Woven - We've used the striped version of this fabric before and it has been a crowd favorite. The lighter weight fabric has a soft, buttery hand, and great visual interest with the chambray weave. In a simple black-white weave, the fabric looks like a lovely heathered grey. This fabric is a great summer weight option if you're looking to make a pair of pants or shorts for the hotter months of the year.
- Avocado Green Washed Linen - This fabric is all about the color! The avocado green is super saturated and veers towards lime in certain lights. A bold choice, this fabric will make a killer pair of pants or shorts and will certainly make a statement. Plus, the linen has an antique washed finish that gives it a full bodied drape and soft hand. A sumptuous fabric choice in an unexpected hue!
And that's it for this month! In the Classic Boxes, we're offering the Sweatpants kits that were so popular back before the pandemic and the ensuing lockdowns. Spending so much time at home has probably made you realize you need more comfy clothes in your life, and the Sweatpants Boxes are a great way to add some handmades into the mix.
As for swatches, the pandemic has really slowed down shipping from our warehouses so even now, fabrics for July are only just arriving. For that reason, we'll do our best to send our swatches to subscribers, but we can't guarantee that enough fabrics will be in the shop in time to do so. If there is a specific fabric that you're looking to get your hands on, please feel free to email us and hopefully we can figure something out. We appreciate your understanding!
Until next time. . .