Before we get started let's outline the deal. I was given the pattern for free in exchange for sewing it up and some blog advertorial. That's cool with me. Obviously it will influence me somewhat, that's been proven over and over. But I hope you'll trust that I'm as honest as I can be....
Well, I love them! The Twisted Trousers are a great compromise between smart trousers and comfy track pants. They've got all the details of a good pair of jeans or slacks with front and back pockets and a coin pocket, but with the kid friendly comfort of an elastic waistband.
And they're twisty, of course!
The side seams twist around to the front and the inseams twist to the back. It makes for a very odd looking pattern piece and consequently they take a little more fabric when cutting than a straight seamed trouser. They way they twist I can't imagine anyone's going to start plaid matching with this pattern!
But with a solid fabric and the optional piping, the seams look awesome!
I went all out with this pair and piped the pockets as well. The instructions are there for adding piping everywhere you could possibly want to, or for skipping the piping and keeping it simple.
I'm not going to pretend this was a quick sew. It wasn't. But oh boy was it worth taking my time over. Come on, let's have a look at the insides...
The front pockets have a pocket bag, which I thought was snazzy enough, but then look at that little facing as well to prevent any inside pocket peeking out. Just perfect!
The instructions for the pocket bag had me sew a French seam, and boy does it give a nice finish.
They were looking so neat, I started to feel a bit let down by the colour of my interfacing on the faux fly. Why didn't I have pinkish interfacing in my stash to match this denim?! Given that there's no zipper, using fabric as sturdy as denim I don't think the interfacing is necessary. Feel free to skip it so your insides look their very best!
The back pockets didn't want to miss out on being fancy. They're lined!
By a very happy coincidence (or due to having too big a fabric stash perhaps) I happened to have some coral Ottobre ribbing which was a perfect match for the waistband.
The only negative in making these pants was nothing to do with the pattern; but trying to neatly insert the cheap grommets that you can buy at the large chain store fabric shop is a complete shit of a job! The accuracy required to strike those things vertically enough to get them to insert cleanly is simply not achievable by a human. I'd suggest buttonholes, or buying a better grommet set.
For A I made a straight size 4 and the fit is just fine. I could possibly have made the elastic in the waist a little tighter, but hey, I sew after the kids are in bed, so it's guess work a lot of the time.
I could have stopped there, but it was actually P who needed more long pants for winter. You know you're enjoying a pattern when you plunge straight back in for a second go.
His are size 6 with 2" length added. This is definitely a pattern where the length needs to be added where the pattern indicates. Those twisty legs aren't going to let you cut a longer hem! I split the pattern, added the length and re-drew the line and it all came together perfectly.
I thought some jeans style topstitching would show off the twisted seams nicely. All that required was a slightly different order of sewing the legs so that I could have the side seam flat in order to topstitch it.
By this time I wasn't referencing the instructions as often as I had first time, and I really appreciated the Cheat Sheet that was included. The main instructions are detailed, photo heavy and best viewed on a tablet or computer. But for repeat sewers, the brave, or those who just hate having to refresh the tablet screen (me!) there is a non illustrated cheat sheet of instructions which can easily be printed and kept on the sewing table.
I was starting to impress myself with these jeans too, so I figured I should go all out on the back pockets. A bit of back pocket embellishment is what makes jeans jeans if you ask me.
P is kind of halfway between the toddler fondness for an elastic waist and the big kid ability to be bothered with buttons and zippers. These pants will hopefully look enough like jeans, but feel enough like trackpants to make him happy to wear them.
I used some quilting cotton to make my own cord for the waist. It's more decorative than functional, as the elastic waistband is a full circle. I learned my lesson about pants that need the cords to be tied to keep them up when I made the Sandbox pants for him.
A thin cotton shirting for the pocket bag makes such a difference when you're sewing a thick denim like this. That's the kind of detail I like a pattern to have. That, and notches everywhere and marks for positioning pockets. The Twisted Trousers pattern had all that going on.
So, it's a resounding two thumbs up from me. Plus, if you know what you're doing, the ability to print only the size you want is pretty cool. I wanted both the size 4 and size 6, so I selected both of those layers. Well that was daft, cause then I get one print out to tile together and then I have to trace it anyway.
Still, I don't like cutting paper print outs of PDF patterns to use as they just don't handle nicely. I was probably always going to trace the pattern, but now I wish I'd just printed the lot so that I wouldn't have to print it off again when the kids have outgrown these sizes. Lesson learned. - and I will need to print it again as the pattern goes up to size 12 and I'm sure I'll use it many times.
Printing in grey scale (cause I'm cheap and my printer ink is pricey) made it hard to see some of the lines for the size 4 pattern. The main pattern sheet can be printed A0 size so there was no excuse not to just take it down to the print shop. Yay for international standard sizing!
While I was tiling the pattern and tracing it, Flipper was watching a movie on TV. I realised I had in front of me, the perfect pattern for a Film Petit gatecrash. (sorry Kristin and Jessica, I couldn't help myself. I'm gatecrashing your party again!)
So, to see another two pair of Twisted Trousers, and my kids going completely mental, come back tomorrow! It's going to be fun...
....and don't forget to stay tuned to the Craftstorming blog for the rest of the Twisted Tuesdays pattern tour. Today you can take a virtual trip to Spain and check out some more Twisted Trousers at Diario de Naii