It is just the second month of Work It: 12 Months, 1 Pattern, No Repeats, and I am so excited for this outfit!! Hopefully you’ve already checked out the 5oo4 Diane Joggers and are familiar with all the amazing options that come with the pattern. (If you haven’t, why?!) This month, I wanted to ease into the hacks and craziness with something just slightly off pattern. I am going to share all my tips and tricks for stripe matching like a damn boss. And making a gorgeous top to match, of course!
These are the capri length joggers, hemmed. Still mid-rise, since that’s my personal preference, with a knit waistband. I sure kept those front pockets and the hack this time around is back pockets!!! Since I picked this absolutely gorgeous Sly Fox Fabrics double brushed poly, these are definitely a slightly more casual pant. As always, the DBP from Sly Fox is buttery soft and super easy to work with! This plaid is back in stock, but there are so many DBP fabrics to choose from, you can pick your fave and make capris that fit exactly what works for your closet!
Since I chose a plaid, and I despise mismatched stripes, I had to fussy cut these babies. And they were work every damn minute!! When I want to stripe match, I cut out the first piece, say a front leg. Then I use that as my pattern piece to cut the mirror image. Flip it over and start matching lines. Be sure to not manipulate it out of shape, or you’ll end up with a distorted piece.
This plaid doesn’t mirror, so I just did my best to make sure major stripes were similar, and that the hem, crotch point, and waist line all match between the two pieces. I repeat this for every mirrored cut, but didn’t cut out my pockets yet!! So, now I have the best base for successful stripe matching. But it doesn’t end there!! When I’m prepping seams for sewing, I actually use excessive clips, which is super rare for me. (I’m lazy.) I clip as many major lines as I feel like, sometimes all of them, but no more than about 5 inches apart. This really helps me make sure my fabric isn’t shifting at all while I serge. It is also a visual reminder of where my stripes are so I pay more attention. (Did I mention the lazy?) If you’d like to take an extra precaution, or you’re a bit more hesitant on the serger, you can totally baste first!
Now that you’re ready to put your seams together smooth and matched, before you start actually sewing, let’s talk about cutting out pockets that disappear after sewn. Lay out your front fabric face up, then place the appropriate pocket pattern piece on top. I used clips to mark where my major lines crossed. Then found a fabric scrap that matched, lined up my clips with those major lines and cut! This is where I break out the wonder tape once again. Why go through all the effort above and risk having the pockets shift while you’re adding them? I use two sets of wonder tape here. The first to fold back and secure the seam allowance. The second to attach it to the pants before sewing. Gorgeous, hard to see front pockets accomplished!
I’m ready to sew the pants except the back pockets. Add your front pockets all pretty, sew per the pattern. My additional tip here is for the knit waistband. This is my favorite way to sew bands of all sizes, waist, neck, arm. Anything you need to sew into a circle, then fold in half, matching raw edges, before attaching to your garment. First match your short edges, as the pattern instructs. Then fold that sucker in half. This will result in a seam with the necessary fold already started, making it easier to fold and quarter before attaching. It also ensures that seam doesn’t twist and shift while you’re wearing it, which I hate! Win, win.
Back pockets are trickier. For back pockets, placement and size are key to highlighting your assets as well as possible. This is a great read for how to best tweak your pockets for your best booty. I played with back pockets from other patterns to find the right size for this pant. Then I pinned them to my butt (in the mostly finished pants of course) and took super awkward pictures until I found the ideal placement. Then I used the same method of clipping major lines and finding fabric that matched placement. I folded down the top 3/4 inch and topstitched, then I also used wonder tape here to fold back the seam allowance on the other four sides and again, to ensure they stayed put while sewing. Be sure to reinforce the top corners, since that’s where most the pulling will happen.
Done! Let’s talk about this gorgeous top. I picked up this mustard modal jersey during the pre-order last year and it is so soft and drapey, the recovery is ridiculous, and the color is stunning! I made this Knot top for my sister last year and have been jealous ever since. The pattern only goes up to 3x and these hips don’t cooperate for that. So I graded out and adjusted for my height. But, the thing is…I didn’t reread these instructions before I started. (And I am always telling people to read, read, and read again. Fail.) I remembered the knot being the hardest part and forgot a crucial step. If I had read them, I wouldn’t have assumed I made a mistake when adding length, as I would have know the front SHOULD be longer than the back. So, instead of matching the hemlines up to the underbust seam, then gathering the front bust to match the back, I did the opposite. I knew the fabric had great recovery, so this would give me some beautiful ruching on the front only, and would solve my length problem. Turns out to be a super happy mistake! I LOVE how the bust fits, even though it isn’t gathered, and I was planning on ruching with elastic anyway. Mission accomplished.
So, I hope you’ll join me in sewing this months pair, or get ready for next month! And to help with that, 5oo4 is giving away another $10 gift card!! But, before we get to that, congrats to last month’s winner, Priscilla Shamulailatpam!!! Enter this month’s giveaway here! And don’t forget to check out all of the beautiful patterns from 5oo4 and the ridiculously gorgeous fabrics from Sly Fox Fabrics!