Tag Archives: True Bias

Lander Pant, Take One

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Lander Pant, Take One

After making three pairs of Ginger Jeans (1, 2, 3) as well as a few other pairs of pants, I’m finally getting in my pants-sewing groove.  I still don’t feel like I have pants-fitting down, but I’m not afraid to try any more.  When the Lander Pant & Short pattern from True Bias came out, I was excited (ok, really excited).  I had already given away all my thrifted skinny jeans, and was feeling the need for some looser pants, or at least nothing tighter than the stovepipe leg view of the Ginger Jeans.  These looked like just what I was after, so I did something I’ve never done before–I preordered the paper pattern.

Lander Pant from True Bias in Denim

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Lander Pant from True Bias in Denim

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Lander Pant from True Bias in Denim

I already had some inexpensive non-stretch denim in my stash from Fabric Place Basement in Natick, MA, and plenty of thread, interfacing, and jeans buttons, so I was ready to go.  When I got the pattern, I decided on View C, the boot length pant and traced a size 12 waist and size 16 hip.  I also decided to lengthen the pattern by 4″ since I’m 5′ 8.5″ and this pattern was drafted for someone who is 5′ 5″ tall (I ended up only needing 2.5″ of extra length, however).  I told myself this was a wearable muslin, in the hopes that it would work out and I could wear it.

Lander Pant from True Bias in Denim

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Lander Pant from True Bias in Denim

The instructions are very clear and helpful, although I did a few things differently.  Like with the Ginger Jeans, I opted to put my back pockets on last, so I could place them while wearing the pants.  I also changed the method for making belt loops, which I felt was just too tricky.  Using a loop turner on denim is not for me!  It’s much easier to cut your fabric strip for your belt loops, turn your seam allowances in and press them, and then topstitch everything closed and cut the long strip apart into belt loops.  These things are minor personal preferences.

The part I really had trouble with was the waistband and crotch seam.  The pants fit great until the point where I added the waistband.  Despite using my measurements to determine my size in that area (and I double checked to make sure I had them right), the waistband was uncomfortably tight.  It was also very high, sitting above my belly button, at my natural waist.  This is what the pattern promises as far as the waist height.  After trying it on, though, and feeling how uncomfortable the waistband was, I decided to go off-book and lower the rise and recut the waistband.  This is not the correct way to lower the rise of pants, but with the jeans near complete, it was the only option.

Lander Pant from True Bias in Denim

I decided I wanted to lower them about 1.75″ (or the finished width of my  original waistband), so I marked new stitching and cutting lines and cut a new waistband 7″ longer, and sewed that on.  I decided to cut the pants down after sewing so I could make sure I was on the right track before crossing the point of no return.

Lander Pant from True Bias in Denim

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Lander Pant from True Bias in Denim

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Lander Pant from True Bias in Denim

This was more comfortable, but it also meant I needed to curve the waistband a bit.  I added some darts (which added a few drag lines, but what are you gonna do?), and this seemed workable.

Lander Pant from True Bias in Denim

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Lander Pant from True Bias in Denim

I tried the pants on and was pretty happy with them.  They are SUPER wide-legged as drafted, but I decided to keep the width and try them out for a while.  Mine also have more ease in the hips than many other versions I’ve seen online, but I chose my hip size according to my measurements, and find the fit in the hips really comfortable.

Lander Pant from True Bias in Denim

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Lander Pant from True Bias in Denim

I liked the back view, and was happy with them when standing, but after wearing them for a few days, I realized I COULD NOT wear them any longer.  Something is up with the crotch seam such that it cuts into me in the front when sitting, and I cannot wear them any more until I figure that out.  I really hate going back into a project once it’s done, but I put them in my mending pile, and I’m going to compare the crotch seam of this pattern with the crotch seam of the Ginger Jeans, which are very comfortable, and see what the difference is.  I’m hoping I can add in a (hopefully invisible) patch to lengthen the front seam or something so that these can at least be wearable.  I think my Jutland pants actually need this adjustment too, although they are not nearly as uncomfortable (in fact, this is something I have only noticed recently).  It looks like I have a little sleuthing to do, which means I get to learn more about pants fitting.  Right?

Lander Pant from True Bias in Denim

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Lander Pant from True Bias in Denim

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Lander Pant from True Bias in Denim

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Lander Pant from True Bias in Denim

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Lander Pant from True Bias in Denim

My overall analysis is that this is a good pattern, the instructions are well done, and Kelly of True Bias has actually put out a design that is different from what everyone else is doing (in a really good way).  As more and more pattern companies come on the scene, it seems to be harder and harder to find unique patterns, so I like that these aren’t available in 1,000 iterations from every company.  If you are thinking about this pattern, I would say: go for it.  Every pattern will have to be fitted to your unique body, and as hard as that can be at times, it also helps us learn and become better at this craft that we love.

Lander Pant from True Bias in Denim

Recommendations

  • Have you seen the Google Arts & Culture app?  I haven’t explored it fully, but my family and I did have some fun with the selfie feature that pairs your picture with a piece of art the app thinks looks like you.  I managed to get two pairings to different selfies:Matching people to art:  Google Arts & Culture

    and

Matching people to art:  Google Arts & Culture

You can read all about this in this article on Google’s blog.

  • I’ve really been enjoying listening through some of the fiction works of writer Wendell Berry (most recently Hannah Coulter and That Distant Land).  He creates a community that isn’t perfect, but still manages to make me want to be my best self.
  • I think I could make a coat like this men’s wool shirt jacket from L.L. Bean by using Simplicity 4109.  One day, I WILL realize my shirt jacket dreams! 😉
  • Funny stuff from Jimmy Fallon and Will Ferrell:
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Inspired by Surfing: Nettie Bodysuit as Swimwear

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Inspired by Surfing:  Nettie Bodysuit as Swimwear

I’m really excited to share today’s garment with you.  This one was a long time coming, because I thought about it for months before finally starting on it.

In the past few years, surfing has become a fun spectator sport for me, and I’m also inspired by the fashion aspect of surfing.  In my perusal of current surf culture, I’ve noticed a lot of wetsuits/swimsuits that look like long-sleeved, one-piece swimsuits (see some of my inspiration here, here, and here).  I wanted one of my own…and I knew that I had the power to make it!

Inspired by Surfing:  Nettie Bodysuit as Swimwear

(front view, above)

Inspired by Surfing:  Nettie Bodysuit as Swimwear

(back view, above)

As I thought my plan over, I realized that the perfect pattern for this project wasn’t a swimsuit pattern.  The one that looked closest to what I wanted turned out to be the Nettie Dress & Bodysuit pattern by Closet Case Patterns.  Maggie at Pintuck & Purl was kind enough to order a few copies so I could get on with my project.  Next I started looking around for fabric and inspiration.  Pinterest and Instagram were great for ideas.  And fabric?  Etsy to the rescue–specifically a shop called Ameritexx Spandex.

Inspired by Surfing:  Nettie Bodysuit as Swimwear

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Inspired by Surfing:  Nettie Bodysuit as Swimwear

Design & Technical Choices

This project was one of my 2017 Summer Sewing projects.  I chose the long-sleeved bodysuit with the high neck and low back in a 12 at the bust and waist and 14 at the hip.  I didn’t want to put a zipper in, so while I originally chose the medium back, I got a little bit worried about how easy it would be to get into and out of, so I decided to go with the lower back.  I also added in a shelf bra (included in the pattern) and padding (traced from other swim cups) for modesty.  I chose to line the body of the suit, but not the sleeves.

Inspired by Surfing:  Nettie Bodysuit as Swimwear

Inside, front (above)

Inspired by Surfing:  Nettie Bodysuit as Swimwear

Inside back (above)

As far as equipment goes, I made this on my home sewing machine (an Elna 3005, if you are interested) with a stretch needle, a walking foot, and a zigzag stitch.  I used polyester thread (from Gutermann) in my needle and woolly nylon/bulky nylon thread in my bobbin.  My elastic was swimwear elastic and the foam I used in the shelf bra was poly-laminate foam from Sew Sassy.  It’s good for lightly padded bras or swimwear.

Inspired by Surfing:  Nettie Bodysuit as Swimwear

the underside of the shelf bra, where you can see the poly laminate foam

When I cut my pattern, I made sure to trace out a full pattern piece (rather than a standard half pattern piece) so that I could cut my fabric in a single layer rather than cutting on the fold.  I also used a rotary cutter.

Process

I always get nervous when I want to sew a swimsuit.  There are so many layers and the fabric is slippery.  You also really need a swimsuit to work–to stay on your body in and out of the water.  Thankfully, this went together really well.  I told myself I would try it on as I went and adjust as necessary.  Usually I just make the thing and hope for the best, but not on this project!  With the exception of including a lining and treating the lining and outer fabric as one, I followed the directions of the pattern to about the point where it was necessary to add leg and neck elastic.

I did make a few modifications, although not many.  I raised the front leg openings about an inch.  I shortened the length of the shelf bra, and decided to sew over each seam twice for extra security.  I also realized very quickly when I started to add my leg elastic that I needed more width of fabric in the crotch area if I was going to stitch and turn elastic and still expect coverage.  To take care of this issue, I got out the pattern for the bottoms of Jalie 3023 (a tankini), traced it out, and used it as the crotch section of my suit.  I also changed how I applied the elastic.  I used the techniques in this blog post (which I’ve printed out so I won’t lose it), using bound elastic for the neckline and gathered, turned, and stitched elastic for the leg holes.

Inspired by Surfing:  Nettie Bodysuit as Swimwear

Bound elastic at the neckline

Inspired by Surfing:  Nettie Bodysuit as Swimwear

Gathered, turned, and stitched elastic at the leg openings

Analysis

I’m really happy with how this turned out, although I’m sorry to say that I finished it so late in the season that I’ve only worn it while swimming once.  It stayed on well, and I felt good in it.  In fact, I think this is my most successful swimsuit to date.  The only thing I might change is to take in the sleeves from elbow to wrist slightly.

As it is now, the suit stays on well, despite the open back.  If it loosens eventually, I could always add a strap across the back.  I’m excited to try this out over time and see how I like it.  It wasn’t overly hard to make (despite my fears) and I like how it looks.  I definitely recommend this pattern if you want to give it a try.  I found that using the sew-along on the Closet Case Patterns website in tandem with the directions was really helpful.

Inspired by Surfing:  Nettie Bodysuit as Swimwear

With only about a week of summer left, I have one more garment from my 2017 Summer Sewing list to sew up as well as a second version of my black silk shirt.  I want to charge through them, but my back has been messed up (I really have to find a way to prevent that!).  I hope I can do it!  I’ll report back here soon!

Lastly, tomorrow is my blog’s four-year anniversary.  Hooray!  Blogging has been a great way to take part in the fun of the sewing community and a great personal journal of the things I’ve sewn.  Thanks for coming along with me on the adventure!

Recommendations

  • Around the time I made this suit, Rosie Martin of @rosie_diycouture and Katie of @katiemakesadress also made long-sleeved swimsuits.  Rosie used the Nettie, while Katie tried the Rowan Bodysuit from Megan Nielsen Patterns.  There must be something in the air!  We all caught hold of similar inspiration!
  • Have you seen the new Lander Pant and Short pattern from True Bias?  I’m really tempted by those pants.  I mean–wide legs and patch pockets!  Right up my alley.
  • I decided I wanted to look at the fashion designs of Ralph Lauren and Valentino more closely so I requested some books from the library.  Two out of three turned out to be kids books, but…they were great!  It was the perfect way to get a brief biography of each designer’s life and career.  I’m going to have to try this for other people I’m interested in learning about.
  • I never realized all the similarities between Harry Potter and Lord of the Rings until I watched this! 😉