I found this awesome Camo fabric at Vogue Fabrics in Evanston, IL during my small business Saturday FART (Fabric Acquisition Road Trip). I've been waiting to use it, searching for the right pattern, and I thought I found it. Don't get me wrong, it's a great pattern, I just used the wrong size.
I should have made the small. I tend to err on the side of caution, but in this case, I'm kicking myself for not giving myself the benefit of the doubt and using the small size. Instead I went with medium, and man, these are big, I had to make a lot of alterations, and I can still pull them off without unzipping them. So, if you see me wearing these, please don't pants me, they
This pattern is brought to you by the good folks at Green Pepper. The pattern is actually shorts with zip off pant legs, which I liked. Convertible clothing? Yes please.
Alright, so let's review.
I modified a lot of the pockets. The front pockets were ginormous, so I made them smaller and they're still huge. The front pockets also called for a gusset (to make them extra roomy), but I am not carrying around heavy artillery, so I made them flat. I also didn't do the zips and velcro in the back pockets, I just flapped them and they're fine. I might put buttons on the flaps, but we'll talk more about that in a bit...
This was my first foray into creating something with a zip fly. I was pleasantly surprised at how well it came together. It was hard to visualize how this worked just from reading the instructions, but once I got the pieces together, it suddenly made sense.
The crotch also had a gusset. I sewed it in and
they were huge. So, I picked out the seams and ditched the gusset. I guess these are intended for men, who have more...equipment...in that area. I mean, I have huge balls for a girl, but I digress. So, no gusset.
As I'm writing this, I'm considering pulling them apart and starting over, but that's a lot of stitches to pull.
I put them on after eliminating the gusset and the legs were still too wide. So, I took an inch off on the inseam and the crotch, because I don't need to be looking like MC Hammer.
Because I made the pant legs skinnier, that meant I also had to alter the zip off pant legs. This was trickier because I had to figure out the right measurements to get the zippers right.
Finally, the pattern called for zips (and more gussets) on the pant legs to be able to adjust the width of the ankle, but I didn't need that, so I skipped that too. In retrospect, I should have cut the pant legs wider to account for that because I typically wear boot cut pants, but I've put that on the lessons learned board for another time.
Now, I'd like to introduce you to the world's worst buttonhole. This is the first real buttonhole I've put into a garment, and I even did a test run on scraps before I went for it on the real thing. What I didn't account for is that there is a seam allowance that creates another layer inside the waistband, so when I placed the buttonhole and used my buttonhole foot, the stitches on the center of the buttonhole were too close together. So, when I cut out the hole, I cut the stitches, and it was a disaster.
Since there was no turning back, I started to unpick the stitches and try again. Then the fraying began. Total nightmare! I abandoned the idea of trying to buttonhole right over it and got to work zigzagging to try and contain the fraying and it looks terrible but it will hold.
When it's buttoned it doesn't look too bad, but it's still not the clean finish I wanted. After this I'm a little gun shy about putting buttons on the back pocket flaps, but maybe I'll try it. We'll see.
Here's the shorts:
The zippers are hidden under a hem:
Here's the leg zipped on (but the hem flap not folded down):
And the leg when the flap is folded to hide the zipper:
Here is the back view, which has the elastic. When I make these again, I'll need to make a lot of changes to the waist (even using the small size) because there's just a lot of room in the back and I just don't have that much junk in my trunk.