Saturday, April 25, 2009

Finished: BWOF 01-09-130 Pants & 05-08-128 Blouse


Pattern Description: Same old fly front pants I always make.

Pattern Sizing: Plus size 44 - 52 (European)

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it? Yes it did

Were the instructions easy to follow? I've made fly front pants about 5,849 times by now. I didn't depend on the instructions. I used the method in Power Sewing Step-by-Step (Betzina, 2002) for the fly front. For some reason, when I read the instructions for the extended waistband they made no sense to me at all. It was like I was reading another language. So, I made it up as I went along.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern? These pants have a welt pocket in the back. Now that I have successfully experienced welt pockets, I can say, without fear or reservation, they are a feature I "particularly like about the pattern". In the past I've used the method described in Pants for Real People (Palmer & Alto, 2007). This time I made them "the real way" - with two strips. BWOF's instructions were a little confusing, so I used the instructions from Professional Sewing Techniques for Designers (Cole & Czachor, 2009). After two practice runs, I was ready to put the pocket on the pants. The pocket isn't perfect, but then what is perfect in this life? I also liked the extended waist band, but I wouldn't include this feature every time I make this pattern. Both of these features I like so much are covered by the blouse anyway.

Fabric Used: "Gabardine-like" polyester. It was difficult to press this fabric without a clapper. I have more fun when I don't have to beat fabric into submission.

Pattern Alterations or any design changes you made: A while ago, I made a pair of BWOF pants that were too tight in the thigh area. So, this time I made a size larger than I usually make and they are too big. I'm constantly experimenting with pants fitting.

Conclusion: These are good, basic, fly-front pants and once I work out the size and fitting issues, they could be a TNT pants pattern. Some BWOF pants fit me well in the thigh area and some are too tight. Rather than take the easy, lazy way (making a larger size), I really should make a muslin and work out the fitting issues.


Pattern Description: A short sleeved, button front blouse.

Pattern Sizing: European plus size 44 - 52

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it? No, because I made a major change. See below.

Were the instructions easy to follow? I wanted to use the instructions for the bulk-free collar demonstrated in the Threads Industry Insider Techniques DVD. But, when the pattern piece is altered for this technique, it needs more fabric. I didn't have enough fabric to accommodate the change. The sleeves have a vent in the bottom and I understood the instructions the first time I read them!

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern? This pattern is basic and there were no design features that called out to me.

Fabric Used: 100% cotton

Pattern Alterations or any design changes you made: The original pattern was a long blouse. I'm not quite ready for that style yet, so I shortened the blouse by seven inches.

Conclusion: I wish this blouse were a little more fitted, but I'm afraid I might mess it up if I take it in. I admit, a muslin would have helped. When I look at both pieces together, they look good enough and I can live with them. But, I really shouldn't be settling for just "good enough". Isn't that why I sew -- to get clothes that are better than "good enough"?


  1. Oooh, that welt pocket is so nicely made! :-)

    Does the blouse have front or back vertical darts? I wonder if you could get a slightly better fit by pinning out small vertical darts- not very big, just enough to take in a smidge.

  2. I agree with Wendy, sometime I add back darts to take a garments in & give it a little shape. You can use a basting stitch first just in case it just doesn't work. You did a great job on the welt pockets. The pieces look great together.

  3. Your outfit looks great on you. You did a wonderful job with the welt pockets.
    Do you recommend your newest book purchase? It really does sound like a great book to have :)

  4. Your outfit is pretty. If you want your blouse a bit more fitted, just pin in vertical darts, front and back, and taper in the side seams a smidge.

  5. Looking good! I have welt envy now.

  6. You've got yourself a really nice outfit. I wish I could just upsize and have things fit. The pants aren't too big, but they may feel it if you're not used to extra ease. Go ahead and dart the back or add some side shaping to the top. Or not, it really doesn't look bad the way it is.

  7. Love the fabric combo. IMHO if you shorten the sleeves to about 2" above your elbow you might like the look better. Right now they're not really a short sleeve and they're not 3/4 either and I think that's giving an oversized (or too big) vibe. Try pinning one sleeve up and comparing them. I think you'll like the fit and overall look better with a shorter sleeve.


  8. Great outfit. I like the sleeves on the blouse!

  9. The outfit looks great together. I agree that you could try taking in the side seams a bit and darts if you want it more fitted. I usually do this by using a large basting stitch and trying it out first. That way if I don't like it, it is easy to remove. Those welt pockets turned out perfectly!

  10. Your welt pockets are perfect and I really love the fabric you used for your blouse.

  11. Nice outfit, beautiful pockets.