Friday, 15 February 2013

Trouser department dilemma

Ooh crikey, Karen's been dipping her hand into the Sewlutions Jar and pulling out names at random. I thought I'd better at least start thinking about my Sewlution, just in case she does it again and catches me unawares (a bit like an Ofsted Inspector swooping down on a school with an hour's notice…)  My Sewlution is to make a pair of trousers with a fly front in 2013. That's still going to happen - it has to by the law of the jar - but I can't for the life of me decide which pattern to use. There are two contenders: the Thurlow trousers by Sewaholic or the Juniper trousers by Colette Patterns, both of which I own and both of which have a fly front. 




My fabric of choice will be red gabardine (mmm red gabardine…) and the image I have in my head is decidedly nautical, maybe helped along by these inspiration pictures?

By Burda member Fletcher and Fenn. Love the nautical detailing.


From Elle. They're a tad long but I love the fit at the waist


Vintage look Swing Trousers from Vivien of Holloway


I thought I'd lay out the pros and cons of each pattern in the hope that it will help me decide. Here goes…  

THURLOW
PROS:
1. Tons of fabulous inspiration is out there in the blogosphere: Lauren's fitted denim pair, Andrea's chic grey pair sans pockets, Scruffy Badger's gorgeous dogtooth pair, I could go on...
2. A fabulous, extremely helpful, step-by-step sewalong by none other than Lauren Lladybird already exists.

CONS:
1. I already own a pair of black Banana Republic trousers that could be a Thurlow twin separated at birth.
2. I never wear them, even though they fit me like a glove, maybe there's a reason for this?
3. I'm not that keen on boot cut trousers (see above).


JUNIPER
PROS:
1. The instructions look comprehensive, plus all the steps seem to be covered on various Coletterie tutorials if I get stuck.
2. Dixie DIY has made an awesome denim pair which look great, she gave the pattern a positive review too, which is encouraging. 
3. Fab high fitted waist and vintage cut.
4. Would be a great match for lots of my vintage style blouses and wedge shoes.

CONS:
1. Hardly anybody has made them so there are very few versions out there to drool over (apart from Dixie's!)
2. The ginormous width of the legs….can leg width be reduced?
3. If the leg width can't be reduced, then they may just be too wide for my small frame and lack of height (although that's what wedges were invented for surely?)

Actually, having just put this all down in writing, I think I'm swaying slightly more in favour of one pattern rather than the other, can you guess which one?! I'd love to know if you have an opinion on this important trouser issue. Don't be shy, if you think one style is a total non-starter, I need to know!  I'll let you know what I decide next week. In the meantime, have a great weekend. x


34 comments:

  1. Please please please make the Juniper. I have had a pair cut out forever and I seem to be skittish about completing them....WHY haven't people made them?????

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    1. I know, I'm curious to know that too! x

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  2. I would personally lean to Juniper, even though you may be flying a little more blind and may have to figure out how to narrow the legs a bit (which I know I've seen people talk about). I bet lots of the posts in Lauren's series will help. I think if you already have a basic pair similar to Thurlows that you don't wear, likie you said maybe there's a reason... but then again, maybe that reason is you just don't like to wear black trousers? I know, I'm a big help, sorry! ;)

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    1. I also thought the unworn Thurlow lookalikes might be because they're black, but then I realised I have another pair of black Banana Republic trousers that are more like a Clover cut i.e. ankle length, very fitted with a narrow leg and I wear them a LOT. I think it's the shape of the leg I don't like. Thanks for your input. x

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  3. Hi Jane,
    what an interesting dilemma to have. I was put off the juniper due to the reeaaally wide legs and I usualy like a wider leg. Not very helpful, sorry!

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  4. i'm working (first muslin - total fail!) on a pair of junipers at the moment. the instructions for the fly front are really clear and easy to understand i have found. it's the fitting that is stumping me (and the fact i'll need to retrace all the pattern pieces in the next size up - for my shape, i think thurlows might have involved easier fitting, but i much prefer the juniper shape). i think mela may have made some junipers and narrowed the leg - or am i thinking of someone else? i guess if you get the top/ body part to fit, leg shaping might be the easier part?

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  5. You can absolutely narrow down that leg! In my experience, you'll want to make sure you have a nice fit around the hip/thigh and taper down on both sides of the leg from there. You can do it! And then report back to me so I can do it. Pants are one of my resolutions for this year too:
    http://senjivastudio.com/2013/01/05/still-the-new-year-lets-talk-about-it/

    I like your blog very much Jane!

    --Margaret

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  6. I would make the Thurlow and straighten the leg. Whichever you choose, have fun making them. I'm looking forward to seeing the finished trousers.

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    1. Duh, that never even occurred to me! Great idea, thanks. x

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  7. I think the Juniper looks more like your inspiration pictures, however, you know I'm going to try to convince you to make those Thurlows! DO IT DO IT. It's pretty easy to straighten the leg - that's what I was working on this week (although I want mine more pegged, so I tapered them in after straightening), and the muslin is looking pretty good.

    Keep in mind that whatever pattern you use, you'll probably want to increase the rise... I'm not 100% on where the Juniper hits, but Thurlows waistband is directly below the navel.

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    1. Yep, I could just straighten the legs on the Thurlows. Hhhmm, now you've set the cat amongst the pigeons... You're right about the rise, below the navel is not a good look on me. Will you be posting about your tapered Thurlow legs? If not, would you mind if I sent you a quick email so I can cross examine you about it?!

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  8. I love your sailor-pants inspiration pictures. Sounds like you are leaning towards the Thurlows. Do you ever get Burda magazine? Their trouser patterns are fantastic.

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  9. I could see you wearing the wider legged Juniper style, especially if the Thurlows are a bit like a pair you don't wear too much. It is weird that there hasn't been so much written about the Juniper pattern but maybe the excitement over Thurlows stole some of their thunder (think they did come out before didn;t they?).
    Personally I'd find it hard to choose too, since I've seen some lovely Thurlows but I am not pear shaped so I would be put off by that, thinking there would be a lot of adjustment involved. Not that that fact usually affects me making Sewaholic patterns! I suppose the Juniper are a more classic, vintage shape though.....ooooh dilemma!

    p.s I still haven't copied that pattern as yet! So no rush for the return of the blouse!

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    1. Yes, the one thing I forgot to add to my list is fit. I'm not pear shaped either and Colette patterns seem to be a pretty good fit on me, so the Junipers would probably be easier to fit around the waist and hips. Just have to sort out the legs.
      I've copied your pattern and (shock horror) graded it down. It's cut out and ready to go so I'll send it back as soon as I've photocopied the instructions. I've got high hopes! x
      Ps. I've finished with knit dresses for now so hang onto the pattern as long as you like.

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  10. I've made them both and I love my Thurlows. The Juniper's were a little to wide for my frame and I plan on going back to them to try and reduce the width, just don't know a good way to go about it. The red nautical version would look adorable in the Junipers! If you do pick the Junipers and manage to reduce the width I would love to know how you do it.

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  11. I was debating between these two patterns myself! I decided on the Thurlows even though I'm not a pear and Tasia said this was the one pattern she wouldn't necessarily recommend for non-pears because of the alterations involved. I just like the look of it (and that it comes with cute shorts!) and I've seen ones made by non-pears. Haven't made them yet, but I'd like to sometime this year.

    Initially I thought I'd go with Juniper because I figured it's better for my shape, but I already made a Decades of Style trouser pattern that looks similar. I look forward to seeing whichever you choose! -Amanda

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  12. If at all possible, could you go to a store and try to find similar pants in RTW? This way you can see what they look like on you and take it from there.

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  13. I vote for the Juniper. I sense that they'll flatter your shape more and I'm confident you can reduce the width of the leg. (Note: I haven't seen the pattern, but I've reduced pant width in the past.)

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  14. I think you should do the Juniper as you are a very knowledgeable sewer and it seems it would be the more challenge for you. You only learn by challenging yourself, so I think you should find out 'can you decease the legs?!'

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  15. Have a look at little Betty. She has made a couple of versions of thurlows, and has slimmed them down and straightened the leg. Link to one of them http://littlebettydesigns.blogspot.com.au/2013/01/denim-thurlows.html

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  16. Juniper.. the Thurlows look too 70's for a 50's girl like yourself! Also, if you have to do a bit of thinking in order to take in the legs (who knows, perhaps you'll like them just as they are anyway! then that will improve your pattern-cutting skills as well. Personally I would just trim around a cm from the outside seams from mid-thigh, widening to an inch by the time you arrive at the hem.. but that's just my (non-science!) gung ho style of pattern altering :-)

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    1. That's what I thought, but you've phrased it a lot more elegantly than I could! x

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  17. I'm for Juniper too, because of the higher waist. I love all your inspiration photos, I'm seeing the vision! I've just posted about my Thurlows if you fancy reading about them - I only say this because you'd left an answer to my comment on trousers a few posted ago.

    http://ozzyblackbeard.blogspot.co.uk/2013/02/fo-sewaholic-daphne-thurlow-trousers.html

    Good luck with whichever you decide to make! :)

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    1. Your Thurlow's look fab, thanks for the link. x

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  18. Loving your inspiration photos. I really like the button on the side rather than the front, I would forgo the anchor lol but that's just me.

    I am no where near accomplished as you. I am making a skirt at the moment and already made a school girl error (wasting precious fabric) But I am determined to figure all this sewing out. Keep your wonderful post coming your in my side bar for constant contact lol

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  19. Hmmm, if you have almost identical trousers to the Thurlows that you don't wear, then I reckon you should go for the Juniper pattern. I think a pair of red Junipers will look so hawt on you Jane ;o)

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  20. Personally I would go with the junipers. If you don't wear your black trousers you won't wear the thurlows. Plus the junipers are the same shape as the trousers in the first pic whic I love by the way. I've made a navy pair of sailor pants but now I think I need red ones too.

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  21. I made the Juniper. The fly front goes in like a dream, the waist is very flattering. There is a drafting error on the pockets. They were a total pain and I ended up drafting new pockets and then found out from a lovely commenter on my blog that I wasn't being inept that she had spoken to Colette Patterns and there is indeed a problem with that area of the pattern. I don't think it would be a problem with an experienced sewer though. I took in the legs quite a bit. I am 5'4" and they are really really wide. I think they would work better in something really drapey like those red ones you've shown. I think you could make them work. All the pictures you've shown are basically Juniper lookalikes so I think you are already leaning towards them...

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    1. This is so, so helpful, thank you very much. I've just read through your post carefully so I know what to look out for. I've also just ordered Pants for Real People, I figure if I'm going to take the width out of the legs, I might as well learn how to do it properly! Great advice, thanks. x

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    2. So glad! Really look forward to seeing them. The Internet is crying out for a decent post on how to narrow the Juniper legs properly (hint hint). Also I've been trying to decide if Pants for Real People would be worth getting so I'm interested/would love to read your insights on that when you get it. I follow your blog so it will pop up in my reader when you post (to my excited squeal I'm sure).

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  22. Jane, what a dilemma! I'd go Thurlow any day as they fit so easily and having had a mare with Clovers I am not sure I'm a Colette trousers gal. However, fancy a cat amongst the pigeons? This is my next trouser make....

    http://voguepatterns.mccall.com/v8836-products-27111.php?page_id=174

    If you do buy it, don't be out off by the shall we say rather disappointing illustrations. It's the photo that grabbed me. I'm thinking grey flannel for now, and some white or navy chino types for spring/ summer :-)

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  23. I'm having a very similar dilemma! I can't decided between the Thurlow's or Colette Clovers. For my first pair I'm thinking the Thurlow's are a better bet as there is so much praise for the pattern and Lauren's sewalong as you say, but I can't help thinking the Clovers are more my style, arrrgh!
    I really enjoy reading your blog and have nominated you for the Liebster Blog Award, there's a post about it on my blog http://chainstitcher.blogspot.co.uk/

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  24. Can I vote for the Junipers please! I would love to see those in red!

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  25. I can see you rocking a pair of red Junipers, Jane. And I doff my hat in respect to anyone who is brave enough to try their hand at trousers!

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