Saturday, July 8, 2017

A Sorry Sewing Saga Success - Burda 6889.

I managed to make these trousers this week.  It doesn't take me long to make trousers, because I sort of know what to do automatically now.  I often sew in the morning and evening before and after the days activities as well, so if I am familiar with the construction of a simple garment it is a fairly quick process.

(Before I continue, the pictures on this post are quite small - partly because there are quite a few, and partly because when I make them larger, the resolution was very poor).

I decided to make up a Burda Miss Petite pattern.  I do find that most trouser patterns don't fit me well, and look a bit woeful from the rear end.  As I am a petite I wondered if this range of patterns would work better for my shape.  I chose Burda 6889.

I chose the tapered pant version. As this is my official July Make a Garment a Month garment, I also chose a piece of black corduroy (from Spotlight) that had been washed and stashed some years ago - our them this month is Seasonal Stashbusting.

The pattern has quite different measurements for this range - a larger waist to hip ratio, and a very different hip and crotch shape.  I chose size 10  and widened the waist to size 12.  As many trouser patterns now sit below the waist, with no waistline therefor marked, I had no idea where the pants where going to sit.  I raised the rise at the back and front and added to the waist height - less at the sides.  This seemed to work, although I may have added a bit much.  I shall wear the pants and see what they feel like - I have to admit they feel really comfortable, and I like a high waist on my pants as otherwise they tend to slide down my slim hips, and I have to yank them up  frequently.

As it so happens, I was probably a bit generous in the waist measurement because I wanted these trousers to fit over layers of tops in winter.  So, I added some elastic to the back of the waistband, something I like to do in any case as this allows for a bit more give with movement.  I also had to widen the waistband in order to accomodate the elastic - I did this by reducing the seam allowances.  So the trousers are also a little higher than planned because of the wider waistband

I was happily advanced with sewing, when I noticed a flaw in the pocket bag.  I blobbed some clear nail polish on it - you can see the nail polish mark and flaw in the picture below:

Of course, like all sewers, I grapple with perfection sometimes, and I was a bit cross about this. Especially as I had checked the fabric for flaws and couldn't see any obvious ones. But then this is black, and it does get bits of fluff on it, so I obviously had not noticed.  So after a bit of self talk I put in the zip, and added the waistband  - with elastic in the back:



Happy with my pants, I then did the hems. I finished one - machine hemmed.  I finished the second and noticed a piece of fluff inside just above the hem  I flicked it away, or tried to.  But you know what I am going to tell you - I found another flaw.  Which was not hidden inside.

I blobbed some nail polish on it and decided that perhaps, just perhaps, I could live with it.  It was late, so I thought it was time to call it a day.


I woke up, decided that I could just not live with it.  I made a cup of tea,  and went to my pattern and traced the bottom of the legs of the pants.  I worked out where the hem should go, and then drew a line, and then did a mirror image of the leg extension below the line:

Then I thought I really should check that there were no more flaws in the trousers. should have done that before drawing the alterations, but didn't think of it.  It was early...

After three checks with a bright torch I decided the rest of the pants were okay.  I checked the remains of my fabric, and found that down one end near the selvedge were a few flaws, about three inches in. This was the end I cut my pocket bags from.  Most of the pants were cut the other end, so they were fine.  I made sure that I avoided the remaining flaws and cut out the new trouser bottoms:

Sewed them on, overlocked them, turned them up, and topstitched the outside:

So now my trousers have a designed hem - in fact, I really like this finish and have kept my alteration pattern pieces in case I want to do this again (if I use this pattern again).

There is also a plus in that I can fold this hem back into a little cuff if I want to.

So, quite a saga, but success in the end.  I thought I would share what I had done, just in case any of you ever have a similar problem.

Anyway, I now have a nice pair of pants, with lovely pockets, which are comfortable to wear and that I can live with :). And corduroy is not cheap, so it was worth the effort of fixing these.

And they are easy to move in - that rise is not too high after all, and I like plenty of ease in a woven. These are casual, corduroy trousers, after all.

So, I am happy with these - and they fill a gap in my wardrobe.

I'm not sure what my next project will be - I am still getting over this one.

That's it for now, back another week,

Sarah Liz


  1. LOL - I can understand why you cuffed them, it would have bugged me as well. A curse! But they're really nice, look cute on you. Some nights I hardly sleep, thinking about something I'm sewing...

  2. These turned out really well, despite the little problems you had.
    Might I suggest a product called Fray Block to use instead of your nail polish whenever you have a little "problem" that needs to be "glued down". Once dry, it doesn't leave a hard spot in the fabric.

  3. Great save on the pants! They look wonderful on you. I second the use of Fray Block. I use it to anchor all my buttons and button holes too.

  4. Good save. You didn't say whether you prefer the petite fit?

  5. Great job on the pants.. and putting the decorative cuff was excellent.. Happy sewing.

  6. A really interesting post Sarah Liz. First a lesson for us all - we must look for the flaws in the material! But you did a great job of saving the situation, and the pants do look really good. I rarely buy Burda, but am interested in the idea of Burda Petite - must check it out as I plan on making a pair of wool pants soon.

  7. The pants look really good and corduroy is so warm and cosy . I used to love wearing them but have not had a pair for years until just a month ago when my daughter was cleaning out her wardrobe and was giving a pair of pull on cords to the donation pile . I tried them on and they are so comfy , like tracksuit pants but nicer. Will you be using the pattern again to make more pants ?

  8. Looks very nice!! So glad you were able to catch all the flaws before they became bigger flaws.... and I really like the way you hemmed these. A nice design detail. I'm with Janine in that it'd also been years since I'd had a pair of corduroy pants until I made my first pair last winter and now is a mainstay in the Winter wardrobe! I hope you will enjoy wearing your new cute pair of pants! :)

  9. Nice job! They turned out really well, especially with your fix. I probably would've left it be, but I'm a bit on the lazy side for knitting/sewing, and go with the "can I fudge it?" and "good enough" technique of handling problems. :D Which is probably why I put up with weird fit issues and wonkiness at times! haha

    I hope your cords serve you well! I've always wanted to make a pair, but I haven't quite figured out trousers or any pants just yet. :)

  10. These are perfect job, Sarah! I love the pants, and they fit on you perfectly. Well done:)

  11. Brilliant save. Glad you could rescue these, it would have bugged you otherwise. Hope you get plenty of wear out of these despite your winter being short

  12. Great pants. I love the idea of the hem, it looks great.

  13. The hem really turned out great. The pants suit you so well. You'll definitely get a lot of wear out of them.

  14. They are very well made, and will clearly be worn a lot. A great make!

  15. Your idea for cuffs was a great way to address the fabric flaws. Great save!

  16. You certainly made these pants work for you and now they will get worn a lot.