Grey wool trousers (with hidden biscuit pockets!)

I’ve been doing quite a lot of sewing recently (less so on the blogging!). Most of it is for an upcoming pattern, so I’m not able to really share details yet, but I’ve also been trying to take time out to fill a few holes in my own wardrobe. Specifically, I realised I was in desperate need of trousers – I pretty much only had jeans or leggings that still fit me, apart from the Navy twill trousers I made this summer of course. I have quite a few skirts and dresses that still fit, but I tend to only wear those once or twice a week to work and I definitely favour trousers in cooler, wet weather.

So taking inspiration from what I’d had that I wore the most, looked at the grey flannel trousers I made in 2012, which I absolutely wore to death over the past three years. They’re a bit too big now, aside from being bobbled, so I thought I’d look for a similar pattern and attempt to recreate them. I found this pattern from the October 2013 issue, though when I looked through my Burda archives there were a ton of slight variations on this general shape. Hooray for sewing from the archives!


(The top on this page was Tall sizes, but the trousers were the regular size range)

The fabric was from equally deep in my stash – I’d been given this soft, grey flannel by Neighbour Helen just before they moved off the moorings (4-5 years ago), and at the time I already had a similar grey flannel in my stash (which became the aforementioned trousers, a midi skirt, and a sheath dress amoungst other things) so I didn’t cut into this one until that had gone. For some reason I had noted in my records that it was a polyester, but when I did a burn test it turns out it was wool! I found hidden treasure in my deep stash, and there’s a good 2m of it left, too.


Seen here with my favourite green Kimono Sweat top, made with green fleck sweatshirting from Guthrie Ghani.

This pattern is technically for stretch wovens, but this wool has zero stretch and is just fine. In fact, I really like the close fit, and I think wool has enough natural “give” to still be comfortable without the added need for lycra. I was originally thinking to line these, but the wool is just so soft and warm without any hint of scratchiness that I decided I’d rather feel it against my skin that any of the linings in my stash, and decided against it.

These are pretty nice basic trousers, but there are a few details which take them above the norm. For starters, I really like that they extend the waistband inside and have an extra button in there to take the strain off the visible button. It just makes the overall look much cleaner. I wanted to make these trousers 100% from my stash, so I used the best buttons I had lying around (you can’t see the blue one since it’s hidden inside anyway!), and it turns out I only had navy regular zips (but like a million black invisible zips!), but I’m fine with that.

These trousers also have a pocket yoke that extends to the centre front, which I just love (and tend to alter my trouser patterns to have if they don’t already) as it keeps the pockets from gaping too much when you sit and can also act as a sort of “tummy tuck” panel. The only thing I’d change for next time is to just make the visible part of the yoke out of the main fabric, and the rest from lining. Making it all in the flannel meant there was a bit more bulk at the fly front than I’d like.

I always love to use some fun fabrics on the inside of my trousers and jeans purely to amuse myself, and these have hidden biscuits! I used some custard cream print quilting cotton I bought from Spoonflower years ago on the fly shield, inner pockets, and inner waistband. My friend Galia designed it and I’d been waiting for a good use. She’d love that I can say I’ve always got biscuits in my pockets!!

The reason I’ve had a bit more time than usual to sew for myself (and some Christmas presents, too) is that I somehow ended up with a handful of extra holidays days at the office job I work Monday to Thursdays. Since they have to be used by the end of the year and we don’t have the cash to go away again, I just booked a bunch of random days here and there, telling myself that on those days there’s No Work Sewing Allowed. In theory, the FehrTrade Patterns work should be contained to Fridays, but in reality I work every weekend, most mornings, and most lunchtimes, too. So giving myself a special day to sew whatever I want has been a massive mental break. I’ve been sewing so much with lycra and knits recently, too, that it was a really nice change to do some tailoring for once, too – I swear I hadn’t even used my iron in months!

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