Two pairs of marathon leggings

Word got round my running crew that I was starting to do some custom drafted leggings for a few people and my friend Lee Ann immediately came up to me and said “I want you to make my leggings for London marathon.” Holy crap – what an honour! It’s her first marathon, and the biggie, and she trusts me to make them for her?! I couldn’t say no to that, so I measured her up right then and there, then drafted out her pattern using the Shin book, and made her a test pair using some cheap thin lycra. She came round the boat and tried them on and amazingly, the fit was perfect, with no alterations needed, woo!

With the fit out of the way, I could then start in on the design lines, which she said she wanted to have a stripe/ribbon that started on her right hip and wrapped around to her right calf, and in navy and red to match her charity vest.

So, as I do, my first step was to draw myself a little plan:

Sorry for the crap quality there, but essentially I drew out the four big pieces (front right, front left, back left, back right) and the rough stripe shape, and realised I’d need 12 pieces in total, and as it’s asymmetric, I’d need to cut everything in single layer.

Organisation was the key, keeping the three pieces for each quarter pinned together on my sewing room clothes line!

I assembled each quarter first (ie: I sewed the front right top to the front right mid, to the front right lower until I had a full leg, and moved on to the front left). The cutting was really the most difficult here, but I managed to just barely squeeze everything out of 1m each of Tissu’s navy blue and red supplex lycras. Assembling it was much easier, but I had to be careful that the seam lines matched up over the left side seam!

I was so chuffed to see them on LeeAnn when she ran past me during the race, and she said they were a dream to wear on the day, too! No tugging, no baggy ankles, no nothing, hurrah!

Don’t they look great on her?? And she’s totally caught the bug, too – already planning her second marathon!

And speaking of second marathons…. my second, Copenhagen marathon, is rapidly approaching (19 May), so I knew I had to get my act together in time to make the pair I planned in my Spring Sewing Ideas and have enough time to take them on a test run (I strictly follow the “nothing new on race day” ethos!).

So last weekend I pulled out some of my precious Suziplex, this time in Navy, and scraps of the pale grey (leftover from my Olympic leggings) to make a pair with thigh accents front and back.

Since I already altered my own Shin draft to have these same thigh markings for my wildest running leggings yet, I really didn’t need to do any pattern work. Except I did – just by raising that horizontal knee seam by 3cm because it felt too close to my kneecap on my wild pair. But that’s it! Otherwise these were a really quick sew!

I may do some freezer paper stencilling yet to jazz them up, since I made two more running armband pockets – one as a gift for a friend, and one for me to match my leggings, and I remembered how much fun it is!

The leggings are all finished but you won’t see me in them until after the race! I reckon I’ll use Sunday’s easy 8 miler to test all my marathon kit out at once, though, so if you’re along the river on Sunday morning, you might catch a glimpse…

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