Can you believe we haven't done boxes with fly front pants since January 2019?? Sure, we've done some pants boxes: leggings, sweatpants, and elastic waist pants, but it's safe to say that the way we dress has been transformed by the pandemic and work from home.
That being said, there are glimmers that "hard pants," as one of my friends puts it, are on the return, especially in the form of wide-leg trousers. This style harkens back to many periods of the last century, all the way from 40s sailor pants to 90s Gap khakis, and we are excited that they are again coming back in fashion (if they ever left).
We wanted to focus on trousers that were fitted through the waist and hips but then either straight or wide cut through the leg. Long in length, these trousers are heavily influenced by menswear styles of the past, but they all have surprising twists that make them perfect for the modern era and for your handmade wardrobe!
Sourcing trouser fabric was a bit of an adventure - you really want the right drape and heft to the options, but a trip to New York City and the fashion district proved to be a treasure trove of great choices! Keeping the color palette rich and saturated for the fall season, we think you'll love the twills, suitings, and jacquards we've picked for you.
So, without further ado, let's dig in!
Sew Essential Box: Strata Pants from Papercut Patterns
If you fondly remember the Gap khaki commercials from the early aughts, these are the trousers for you. A classic style, the Strata Pants feature a flat front, zip fly, and roomy, cut-on pockets. But don't think simple means boring!
Like all the Papercut patterns, there is elegance in the simplicity. These are the pants that you'll wear all the time, the ones you pair with a t-shirt, a sweater, or a button-up shirt. Style them with booties or sneakers, jackets or blazers. The possibilities are truly only limited by your imagination!
For fabric, we chose traditional bottom weight twills and canvases, but in colors that will suit the fall season and your color palette. Deep greens and blues or warm orangey reds will make your wardrobe feel seasonal yet timeless. So let's dig in!
- Navy Organic Cotton Spandex Twill - Since the Strata Pants are inspired by vintage sailor pants, it seemed like a no brainer to use a classic navy color. Deep and dark, like the Atlantic on a winter's day, the color is just one thing to love about this fabric. With a silky, dry hand and a medium weight, the fabric is supple and wearable, like your favorite pair of khakis that you wore until holes appeared. A truly wonderful option for pants!
- Red Clay Organic Cotton Canvas - A good canvas can go a long way in your wardrobe. This cotton fabric is soft and flexible, and at 7 oz, just the right weight to be durable without stiff. The red clay color is earthy and rich, and the simple, utilitarian weave will give you a work-pant feel to the trousers, just like vintage sailor pants you might find in a consignment shop. It's entirely possible these will become your new favorite pair of everyday pants!
- Forest Ventana Cotton Twill - This twill is the perfect chino twill. Soft, flexible, medium weight, and 100% cotton, it's an ideal fabric this wide-legged pants. What sold me on this fabric in particular is the color. Dark and verdant, this dark evergreen is subtle and unexpected for pants. But we think it's perfect for the fall season when green pine trees stand out against the changing colors of the rest of the forest. A simply gorgeous choice!
Sew Select Box: High-Waisted Trousers from The Assembly Line
There's always a pattern that starts the theme each month. The one that plants a seed in our brains and grows into a full set of boxes. For this month, the High-Waisted Trousers are it. We love everything about this pattern, and we knew from the very start we needed to use it somehow.
Heavily menswear influenced, this pattern harkens back to the early 90s and the preppy trend of pleated pants that would make Laura Hutton proud. The pattern gives it a modern overhaul, though, where it's fitted through the hip, straight through the leg, and finished with tab closures on the side. These gorgeous design details will add a tailored look to the trousers and dress up any outfit you pair them with.
These trousers rely on drape, so we really focused on the hand of the fabrics. To give a suiting look, we chose flannel, glen plaid, and a lovely tencel twill, all of which will become an amazing pair of fall-ready trousers. Here they are!
- Salt and Pepper Tweed Flannel - We never miss an opportunity to use our favorite medium weight flannel, and these trousers are ideal for it. The flannel in question mimicked the look of wool tweed, but has the softness and durability of a brushed cotton. This fabric is yarn-dyed with black and white threads that add amazing depth to the weave, like marled, abstract gray. With a tailored drape, it holds its shape well and presses just as nicely (a must for the front pleats on these pants). An amazing fabric for these trousers!
- Bright Blue Glen Plaid Suiting - For a pop of color, look no further than this unique glen plaid fabric. Glen plaid is defined by a distinct large and small check tartan that up close looks like it's made out of houndstooth. This fabric ups the ante, though, by using a vibrant blue as its background color. The jacquard weave has texture and depth, and a little bit of spandex gives the fabric the right amount of stretch for movement. A one-of-a-kind fabric that will become one-of-a-kind pair of trousers!
- Rust Orange Tencel Twill - A perfect blend of drape and body, this tencel twill will be the new fave! In an earthy, rust orange, softly muted and full of depth, the fabric has a matte surface that resembles sand-washed silk. Medium weight with great body and a lovely, supple drape, this option is the swishiest of the fabric choices and will give you a pair of trousers with movement and softness. A stunning contrast to the classic menswear cut!
Sew Curvy Box: Calder Pants from Cashmerette Patterns
Keen observers will note that we've used the Calder Pants before in our Pull-On Pants Boxes from back in 2020. But we aren't opposed to bringing popular patterns back, especially when they're this good!
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, wide leg gives symmetry and drape to the look.
Our previous box with this pattern were summer fabrics, but this box gives us the opportunity to dig into some fall textures and colors. We're talking flannels and tweeds in wonderful, jewel tones. So without further ado, here they are!
- Crimson Speckled Flannel - At first blush, this fabric looks just like a boiled wool or tweed. With a bright, crimson background, stippled with white, blue, pink, and green dots, this flannel has so much depth and interest! And all while being a touchably soft cotton that is medium weight and a wonder to wear. A tailored drape will show off the wide shape of the trousers without too much volume, and the soft hand will keep you in secret pajamas the whole time. Trick everyone into thinking you made a wool trousers with this easy to sew fabric option!
- Seawool Charcoal Highlands Tweed - Don't worry if you've never heard of seawool before. It's pretty new on the market but nothing short of a wonder! Made from crushed oyster shells combined with recycled polyester, the fabric is anti-microbial, anti-static, and touchably soft. Woven into a yarn-dyed, gray and white tweed texture, it has all the look of wool tweed, but with the feel of flannel. A tailored drape will show off the wide-leg of these trousers, and the tight weave will keep you warm as the weather turns cold. Secret pajamas, here you come!
- Ocean Blue River Textured Tencel - A sandwashed, textured tencel, the fabric has a wavy, striated feel that gives it a velvety hand and soft, effortless drape. The sandwashed finish creates a matte, sueded look, similar to silk, and the semi-fluid drape creates movement and softness. Oh, and the color! A green-tinged ocean blue is lightly muted but full of depth, like a calm lake just before sunrise. A classic look with an extraordinary fabric - what more could you want?!
Sew Indulgent Box: Romero Trousers from Pauline Alice Patterns
I have been looking for a true sailor pant for years now, so you can guess my excitement when I found the Romero Trousers from Pauline Alice. Admittedly, I was a bit late to the game - these came out in 2018 - but the discovery came just in time for these boxes.
By "true sailor pant," I mean the wide leg and button front closure. The high waist and fitted hips of the pants create a clean, tailored look while the wide leg keeps the look balanced and chic. Pauline Alice has improved on the classic by adding functional pockets, and the option for shorts or an ankle-length version will let you create the look you want.
For fabric, we're sticking to cooler weather weights and colors to help you take advantage of the season. A wool blend, a velvety cord, and a brushed twill are just what you want to get all the Autumn vibes. So here they are!
- Navy Glen Plaid Cotton Blend Twill - We've never quite seen a fabric like this, but in all the best ways. A denim-style twill, meaning the plaid is created by yarn dyed threads, this fabric is sturdy and just the right weight at 9 oz. This combination lends itself beautifully to the sailor pants style of these pants, while the navy, green, and black plaid adds sophistication. Brushed for softness, this fabric even has a touch of spandex for comfort. Simply gorgeous!
- Amber 21 W Needlecord - The wale of this corduroy is so fine, it looks and feels almost like a velvet. It's plush and soft, and that means that whatever you make with it will feel amazing. But, who are we kidding, this fabric is all about the color! A bright, cheery yellow, the color reminds of Quaking Aspens in the fall, so it feel absolutely right to use it in our October Box. Plus, with added spandex, it will be as comfy as it is beautiful!
- Charcoal Wool Blend Micro Dogtooth Suiting - With a cashmere-like hand and brushed face, this wool blend suiting is a delight to touch. With a yarn dyed micro-check pattern, it looks like super 120s suiting, while a hefty percentage of polyester means it is fully machine washable. We love the contrast of the suiting fabric with the more utilitarian cut of the pants and it will transform into a pair of trousers can go from work to play in a snap. We're even giving you extra lining fabric in case you want to fully line the pants for even more comfort!
If you're not interested in sewing pants, don't worry. We've got you covered with our Tried and True Boxes! This month, we're reviving a box so old we didn't even have our Sew Curvy Box when we launched it. It's our Button-Up Shirt Box from all the way back in October 2018. Because it's been so long since we've offered these, there's a fresh new batch of fabric available, plus two new patterns. But the spirit of the box is the same and it will help you sew an amazing button-up shirt perfect for the fall season.
Until next time. . .