Welcome to Day 2 of the Greenstyle Creations Chelsea Pants Blog Tour! Greenstyle Creations released the Chelseas last week and for good reason, they have taken the pdf pattern world by storm! They are a very flattering, on trend, but comfortable flare pant. What's not to love?
I was excited when Sarah, from Sewing with Sarah, organized this blog tour and asked me to be a part of it! I thought I would use my day as an opportunity to explain a little about the fabrics that are recommended for this pattern and to share some of my favorite tools and tricks to make this pattern look phenomenal!
The pattern calls for a stable knit with at LEAST 25%, 2-way stretch for most knit fabrics and 35% for stretch denim or other stretch woven fabrics. No vertical stretch is needed. Some fabric options are scuba, ponte, a stable french terry, and stretch denim. Below, I will provide brief descriptions of the fabrics I have used for the Chelsea Pants I have sewn so far.
Scuba Fabric (or techno scuba)
Scuba knit is a lofty double knit fabric of finely spun polyester fibers that create a super smooth hand, low luster sheen and a full-bodied drape.
Scuba knit is created with a very fine gauge, smooth thread and the resulting surface is generally smoother than a ponte. It also has a "sproingy" quality, similar to what you see in a neoprene ("wet suiting") fabric, but it's thinner and more malleable than traditional neoprene. It has a lot of body, and doesn't hang the way a ponte does. Scuba is a dream to sew with!
Ponte De Roma
Ponte De Roma (from Sly Fox Fabrics)
Ponte de Roma (pronounced pont-ee) knits are stable, easy to sew knits as they are of a good weight, resist wrinkles and creases, but still have a soft hand and good stretch. Great for garments that need some structure. Ponte fabrics are tightly knitted, resulting in a mid or heavyweight fabric that has a moderate to slight amount of stretch. Some ponte fabrics have two-way stretch (the fabric stretches only from selvage to selvage), while others have four-way stretch (the fabric stretches in all directions). You’ll also notice that most pontes have fine lines on one side of the fabric.
In the past, Ponte fabrics were made up of 100% polyester which made for a very rough-to-the-touch fabric. Today, ponte fabric is usually a mix of polyester, rayon and spandex, although you can find rayon/spandex and rayon/nylon/spandex blends. Ponte, being a heavier weight knit, is perfect for more structured knit garments.
Stretch Denim (or jegging denim)
Stretch denim is a relatively new type of denim cotton (or cotton/polyester blend) that incorporates a small amount of elastane, a stretchy, synthetic fiber, also known as Spandex, or Lycra, into the fabric. Stretch jeans typically include about one to three percent elastane.
Jeans made of stretch denim material may look like regular jeans, but provide more flexibility and “give” with the wearer’s body movements (yeeesss!!). Stretch jeans are also generally more form-fitting than jeans made without any stretch in the fabric.
Jegging denim will usually have more stretch than "stretch denim" and be lighter weight. My jegging denim Chelseas are my favorite, they are soooo comfortable, but still look very nice.
Jegging Denim (from Fab Clique)
Jegging Denim (from Fab Clique)
Stretch Denim (from LA Finch Fabric)
From most stretchy to least stretchy, here is a list of the fabrics I used in the above pictures. The more stretchy the fabric, the looser the pants fit.
Scuba (most stretchy) - I honestly don't remember where I got this floral scuba! But I'm sure it is mostly polyester with around 5-7% spandex in it. It has approximately 40-50% horizontal stretch and 25% vertical stretch.
Jegging Denim - Navy denim jegging from Fab Clique 2 way stretch. 50% stretch from selvage to selvage)
Ponte - Adoring in Navy from Sly Fox Fabrics -77% polyester 18% rayon, 5% spandex
Stretch Denim - Sky Blue Stretch Fashion Denim from LA Finch Fabric - Cotton/Poly/Spandex with 25% Horizontal stretch, 9oz.
Tips, Tricks (and some fun tools!)
I absolutely love this little thing! I have tried several different chalks, but all are somewhat difficult to use on stretchy knit. This little guy works like a dream.
For the Chelseas, I use my chalk wheel to trace the pocket placement.
I love using the double sided fusible stay tape for pocket edges. It is extremely helpful on the Chelsea Pants, since the pocket edges are curved. The SewKeysE stay tapes are made specifically for the use on knits. I have several different kinds of them and really like them all.
With the double sided fusible tape, you iron it on per instructions, and then peel off the paper layer. This leaves a strip of glue exactly 1/2" wide, as you can see in the picture progression below. You then fold over your edge and iron down. So easy!! In the pictures, notice that I have snipped into the tape to enable it to curve smoothly around the edges.
I use my glue marker ALL THE TIME! For the Chelseas, one of the steps I used it on was when I stitched the two pocket pieces together. I ran a line of glue on the 1/2 seam allowance of the bottom piece (just where the top piece will lay) and then stuck the pieces together. I also used a few pins to ensure no shifting or sliding when stitching together!
4. TIP- Front Seam Line
Baste your waistband to your pants, just at the front seams, to make sure your seams line up perfectly! I like to use a contrast thread for the top stitching, so if the seams aren't lined up perfectly, it's very noticeable!
5. TIP- V in Back
Here is what I do to ensure a great V in the back! I love this detail of the pattern! Using my sewing machine, I sew a couple of inches with a 3/8 inch seam allowance, stop with my needle down in the back seam, PIVOT, and then sew a couple more inches down the other side. Alternately, you can start in the middle and sew down one side. Cut your thread. Start in the middle again and sew down the other side. I finish the edges with a serger by starting at the tip of the v, serging all the way around (attaching waistband to pants) and then end at the v. To keep that sharp v, make sure your serger isn't stitching into where you sewed with your sewing machine.
I hope my fabric descriptions and my tips, tricks, and tools will come in handy when you get ready to sew your Chelseas! Happy Sewing!
Each day this week we will have one or more bloggers on the tour posting their Chelsea pants, tips, hacks and tricks, so make sure you check them out! Sarah has some great bloggers lined up!!
Would you like to win a pair of the Chelsea Pants (or another Greenstyle pattern, if you’ve already purchased the Chelsea’s) for FREE? How about some awesome fabric from Aurora Fabrics to complete the package? Enter the giveaway below, and check out all the other bloggers on the tour!
Each day this week there will be one or more bloggers on the tour posting their Chelsea pants, tips, hacks and tricks, so stay tuned!
Would you like to win a pair of the Chelsea pants (or another Greenstyle pattern, if you’ve already purchased the Chelsea’s) for FREE? How about some awesome fabric from Aurora Designs to complete the package? Enter the giveaway below, and check out all the other bloggers on the tour! Don’t forget to subscribe to my blog, and follow me on Instagram so you don’t miss a post!
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