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The Culottes Conundrum

In my last post, I made a muslin of a pair of culottes from Hot Patterns Camera Ready Culottes pattern.  Since then, I've had a few weeks to wear them, observe people's reactions to them, and decide whether I wanted to cut into some good quality linen for another pair. 

I did and here is my 2nd pair!





 




I used the same pattern again for this pair from the soft blue/grey/green windowpane linen at Fabric Mart.  After wearing my test pair a few times, I definitely felt a little weird with the legs being so wide, and I discovered that the waistband kept stretching out, and I was constantly pulling them up.  

So, this time I made two changes- I reduced each leg circumference by 6", and I used a grosgrain ribbon for the waist facing.  It's a great waistband finish if you want to reduce bulk and add stability.Here's a photo of what this looks like:


My top is made from Bright Mint Linen from Fabric Mart.  The pattern is the new Hot Patterns Plain and Simple Woven T and Dress.   I'm sorry to say, it did not live up to its name.  I had major problems with the sizing and the shoulder seams.  I ended up making several muslins, and determined that I needed the size two sizes smaller than my measurements would have indicated!  Even with cutting two sizes down, it is still very loose fitting, so I added some waist darts to bring it in a bit.  I should have stuck with Butterick 6175, which I had already made and was so similar.

The shrug is from the new McCall's Khaliah Ali pattern 7135.  I'm not sure why they call this a shrug instead of a cardigan.  Whatever they call it, I like it!  I used a tissue weight linen blend knit in a silver grey that I bought last year.  I shortened the sleeves 6", just because I didn't have quite enough fabric to make it full length, and I'm glad I did.  I like the 3/4 length on these.  I left all of the edges raw.  This is one of those fabrics where the edge wants to curl, and I just let it do it's own thing.


And the cherry on the sundae is the scarf.  This is a 1-3/4 yard length of silk chiffon that was cut in half lengthwise, and then finished with a rolled hem on the edges.  It had all the right colors to tie this outfit together.  I love it when that happens!

 
So, finally I'm getting to the title of this post- my culottes conundrumI have to tell you that when I wore my test pair to the school where I work, I definitely got some looks- like "What the heck is she wearing?" looks.  Particularly from younger people who just have never seen them before.   I remember when I first saw skinny jeans, and I thought that they were really awful.  Now 20 years have passed, and everyone is wearing them and I think they are great.  So, it should be interesting to see what happens.

Even people who were familiar with culottes from "back in the day", said that they liked them, often added "Well, you can wear them because you're so tall.  They would just make me look fat."  Which that makes me wonder- will anything that isn't all about making you look thinner make it in our society these days?  We are pretty obsessed with our weight, and these definitely are not "slimming".   My radar is on to spot someone else wearing them in my community, and so far, I've had no sightings.  
  
No matter!   I really do think that I'll enjoy wearing these culottes, along with all of the other pieces. What do you think?  Will you be experimenting with any new or old fashions this Spring?


Happy Sewing!

Ann

Comments

  1. And how pretty! I appreciate your problems with the top...I kind of anticipate issues when I do a HP patterns. They're are all over the place! Frustrating.

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    Replies
    1. I have generally had good luck with Hot Patterns, so the sizing really through me off on this one. Just goes to show that it's always a good idea to flat pattern measure.

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  2. Love the entire outfit. As for culottes, take a trip to downtown Chicago, you'll see plenty and you'll fit right in :)

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    Replies
    1. Thanks, Rhonda! I am planning on going up to Chicago next month, so I'll be sure to pack my culottes!

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  3. They do look nice on you. Your scarf is beautiful!!!

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  4. I think you look fabulous! However, I am not going to try culottes for myself.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Lynn! Your sentiments echo what I've been hearing at home.

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  5. I'm definitely one of those young people who have never seen culottes (and doesn't know how to pronounce the word...) and I'm still on the fence about them. the ones that I like are very flowy and billowy at the bottom and well-fitted around the hips, and I think it's important to stay away from "Mom Pants" that are some kind of baggy capri pants. yours look very crisp and nice! I'm still too uncertain about them to make a pair, but perhaps someday and with a high pair of heels.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks for commenting, cleo! I understand your hesitation. Hopefully you'll find just the perfect fabric for the billowy kind and give it a try!

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  6. I keep see culottes and I just can't bring myself to try them again...that is yet! I do think they look nice on you Ann! I remember wearing these a l-o-n-g time ago!
    Sue

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    Replies
    1. Thanks, Sue. Yes, I think it's been at least 30 years since they were "in". I've got some original patterns for them, that I should dig up.

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  7. Love your outfit, and your first pair of culottes were really lovely as well!

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  8. You outfit, and your culottes look great. Personally, I hold on to clothes forever, and I'm worried the look might be short-lived.

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