Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Sewing Dare Part 1: Style Arc Barb

OK, Gillian: I am following through with your sewing dare to make pants, but I am doing it in baby steps. Yes, I made pants. But are elastic waist stretch pants really daring? The rules state, "A good dare should be a fun challenge, just slightly outside your comfort zone." I'm thinking this gets me a quarter or maybe halfway to completing my dare, because although technically pants because they cover the lower half of my body with two tubes, these pants have no zip, no button, no pockets, and thus are completely within my comfort zone.

Judges?



These are the Barb's Stretch Pants from Style Arc, a simple elastic waist pant made from stretch woven. This is my first Style Arc pattern. I never bothered with their patterns before because I couldn't commit to a size and couldn't download them. Now that Style Arc is selling PDFs on Etsy, I decided to give them a go. They have a couple of the patterns for sale for pretty cheap as trial patterns, including the Barb's Stretch Pants pattern for $3.66. However, that includes a range of only 3 sizes and, turns out, the 3 sizes are not layered for easy grading, but are individual PDF files. Hmmmm. Not sure about that.


What I am sure about, though, is that I am pretty pumped about my final product! Sure, it's a pair of grey elastic waist pants... not the most exciting make ever and it certainly won't win me any fashion awards. But a solid wardrobe staple? Yep.


My fabric is some super stretchy woven I got in Hong Kong's Sham Shui Po district. I'm not sure what material it is, maybe poly, lycra and something else? Good recovery.


My waist fell into a different size range than my hips, so I cut the size closest to my hip measurement, figuring I could take the waist in. Ultimately I didn't end up doing that, rather I just cut the elastic shorter to fit my waist so it pulls in a little bit more. This pattern is quite forgiving.

You've probably heard this same gripe before about Style Arc patterns, but I'll reiterate it anyway: the instructions are a bit of a joke. They are really minimal and only contain a couple of diagrams. For something simple like the Barb Stretch Pants, the sparse instructions are not a problem, but I imagine for more complicated patterns it could be a struggle.


So, to sum up: I made pants! But not real pants. So I will forge ahead with more complicated pants now in order to truly complete my dare. Are you doing a sewing dare? How far along are you?

18 comments:

  1. LOL yay for staples! I can't wait to see your real dare lol

    Mine is shorts. I have the pattern in mind but haven't cut anything yet. Hopefully I'll be done in 2 or 3 weeks!

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    1. Ooh- can't wait to see your shorts!

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  2. I think these totally count, because look at the fit! Don't cut yourself short Meg - these look fantastic and they are a woven pant! I am really looking forward to seeing more trousers from you and thanks for the Style Arc review too.

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    1. They did fit surprisingly well, which I am pretty happy about! Yes, certainly more trousers. Baby steps!

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  3. I think Gillian (lover of elastic-y pants) would approve. Besides, they look great!

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    1. Ha ha, true, Gillian is the queen of pull-on pants!

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  4. Your pants look great! I can't even really see the gathering at the waist -- they barely look elastic. :)

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    1. Thanks, Alli! That's good! I was really happy they didn't look too elastic-y.

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  5. Yes I think these look great! Much better than my first pair of pants and I wouldn't have even known they were elastic waist!

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    1. Thanks, Meg! Funny thing: they're not actually my first pair of pants. I made a decent version of the Ginger jeans! For some reason I still can't get over the mental hurdle of "pants are hard," but this is helping.

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  6. They fit so well! (Side note - I wore my first pair of Style Arc Elle recently, and I continue to like them better than some of my way later versions. Proof that more tinkering with fit is not always better!) I love stealth pull-on pants like these - no one would ever know! Nice work! Now go make some more complicated pants just to show yourself that you can!

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    1. I know, noone will ever know I am secretly wearing PJs to work, provided I don't tuck my shirt in! Yes... non-stretch pants coming up soon! Thanks again for the dare and the motivation!!

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  7. These really fit you well! They definitely don't have the look of elastic waist pants. Even seeing the waistband it's hard to tell that's what they are. I might even be willing to brave the Style Arc non-nested pattern now that I see your success with this pattern. My dare was to sew an Archer and I just have the buttons/buttonholes to go. Woo!

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    1. I know! I was so happy the waist wasn't too gathered, especially since I took it in a bit. I would definitely try Style Arc again, but maybe stick with their simpler patterns unless I am willing to wing it a bit/be a bit creative on construction.

      Can't wait to see your Archer!!

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  8. Wow, for your first foray into pants, you got a really nice pair with some quality fit! I've avoided Style Arc because of the one size bit, but it's nice to know they have downloadable now! Thanks for passing on that info! I'm a jeansmaking nut, and I will attest that once you get started making pants, it's quite fun and addictive. The construction is not near as complicated as any given dress, but the fitting has a steep curve. If you can figure out the fitting, pants are a breeze!

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    1. Thanks, Elizabeth! Yep- I was happy with the fit and happy to find out that Style Arc is selling PDFs, too! I hope I get the pants making/fitting addiction, too!

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  9. You are still brave for making pants! It is a first step, and it is a cute step, too. It looks great with that lovely top.

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