Finished – City Cargoes!

During the RTW Tailoring Sewalong I started suffering from “jacketitis”, and the only cure for this is to make something completely random and unplanned, so I whipped up these trousers from stash.  “Whip up” being a bit of a lie, as they had six pockets – two of them requiring unpicking precision stitching!

Plus the fit in the rise and the legs wasn’t right on me – I fussed and fiddled forever trying to get them to be as I imagined, all the while thinking: “I am not moving those pockets”, until I gave up with a stiff neck from trying to look at my behind in the mirror, and returned to my coat thinking it was far easier!

A couple of weeks passed…..

Until the other day I got stuck in and sorted them out once and for all, and here they go – ta-dah!:

The pattern
The pattern is #131 Trousers from Burdastyle May 2010 – the link is here, and you might recognise them from this magazine picture:

Because the model is walking they look a lot slimmer in the thigh than they actually are – I had to narrow mine considerably to get them to how I envisaged.  I also lowered the back rise and back waistline 1cm to better fit my shape.  The front rise angle is slightly wrong on me too, but I think I can live with it – with the zip and pockets done it is awkward impossible to change!  I taped the waist to prevent it stretching, but even so the front waist might need taking in slightly – which is unheard of for me as I usually have to let the waist out!

The fabric
I used some polyester suiting from stash that is probably a nice quality as far as polyester goes.  For some reason I have a roll of about 15m of this stuff – these trousers used up approximately 1/10th of that, hardly stash-busting!
Burda recommend using poplin for this pattern but my fabric was thicker than that.  I wouldn’t want to use anything thicker though as the bellows pockets would get too bulky.  The tabs were turning out a bit thick and difficult to make neat, so I substituted them for some nice grosgrain ribbon and I’m really happy with the texture contrast they provide.  Raiding the stash further I found D-rings in the perfect size, so it was meant to be!

The details
I really like the details on these trousers – the belt loops, the back flaps, and especially the positioning of the cargo pockets – you’d think pockets right on the hips would be real unflattering, but they don’t feel like that at all.  Maybe I should have buttonholed the back flaps, that button looks a bit lonely:

The invisible zips at the cuff are a bit of a waste of time as they are, well, invisible.  They’re unnecessary for getting the trousers on and off unless you have particularly large shoes, and because the zip pull flops down they serve more as an advertisement for YKK than anything!

(Not that I mind advertising YKK – I recommend their invisible zips highly.  In this post I was surprised to hear so many reports of invisible zips failing, and I have to mention that I have never had this problem with YKK zips – despite making a lot of close fitting garments!
I did have an issue once using another brand – on a style where I ordered only one colour in the other brand because it was a better match – and most of the tops in that colourway were returned by disappointed and embarrassed customers because the zip had failed – I was not happy! All the other colourways were fine – funnily enough, the ones with YKK zips.)

Back to the trousers:  next time I will probably use a fancy zip pull or an exposed zip instead.  And there could be a next time – I love these trousers and they are very ‘me’.  They combine a touch of cargo casual with a touch of city chic – hence the moniker City Cargoes!

PS – while I was photographing these out in the garden our resident Tui made a noisy appearance, and I managed to capture him on pixels for you – doesn’t he look smart with his feathery bow tie?

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Designer, Patternmaker, Blogger Of All Things Sewing. Follow as I share projects, patterns, and my favourite tricks of the trade.

35 thoughts on “Finished – City Cargoes!

  1. Oh my so gorgeous. Must admit I'm a bit envious of your perfect pockets.
    I made 2 on the pants i' working on but they are
    Not so perfect. I kept them though. I wish you could
    be my friendly neighbor so I could learn.
    Thanks a million for the inspiration. U'r great,


  2. LOVE these! You look stunning and wow…the pockets are amazing! How pretty is the Tui…so neat that you got such a great picture!!


  3. ~Miss P – what a great idea, I think they'd be fantastic in linen! (mentally searches stash…)
    ~Everyone else – thanks!
    ~Gail – yes, they usually come up with some neat details. They used to fit me perfectly when I was at school, but I've changed shape a bit with old age!


  4. Those look fantastic on you. I love the ribbon/d ring touch. Also, I wanted to let you know that I read all your RTW sew along posts even though I wasn't making a jacket. I have saved them all because they are so jam-packed with great information. Thank you so much!!!


  5. Sherry very cool trou, regardless of the wrinkles in front and I love the colour and style on you. We have a tui in our garden and I haven't managed to see him let alone get him to sit still for a pic. How nice you caught him on film for us!


  6. Sherry,
    Perhaps a RTW TROUSER SEWALONG is next on the agenda! You look fabulous and those pants are sublime! Could you please look at doing a 'tips of the trade' on how to complete a 2 piece (upper/lower)waistband for trousers/skirts? And how to sew the edges of the waistband (the extensions) to make them smooth and without bulk…..Very basic I know but needed! thanks Lexley


  7. These are great! I like the cargo style. Now that I look closer at the mag. model photo, I see that the hips are sort of baggy; your slimmed version is more flattering.


  8. Love the trousers . The stitching is superb . Well done . Sherry, if one was to bag out a lining in a skirt where would you turn it out to the right side and would you ever do it? I love bagged out linings as you dont have to overlock everything and it all looks so neat . I was wondering if there are contra indications for bagging out linings . Thanks for your very invaluable knowledge . Regards Mem.


  9. ~mem – Once you start getting below the hipline the lining can ride up slightly when you walk, pulling up the hem if it is attached. I like to leave the lining hem free on coats and skirts for this reason, and just chain them together at the side seams.
    Underlining can also give a nice finish if you place wrong sides facing, but it has it's own drawbacks that make overlocking seem so nice and easy! You can underline then line if you really want to – I usually reserve this for a gown or fabrics requiring it, eg lace.


  10. These look beautiful! So well made! Do you use a lot of Burda patterns? I subscribe to the magazine and I find they have every pattern I need!


  11. Thanks Lola – I used to sew with Burda when I was at school, and purchased a few issues last year for fun – gradually I am sewing my way through them! They are good, each time you peruse one you see something new to make! But I generally make my own patterns – but that's not very evident lately is it?!!


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