Since I decided to sew and wear more tunics this fall, I need some truly opaque leggings. I don’t know why this is such a hard thing to find in RTW or fabric stores!
Currently, my only pair of public-worthy leggings-as-pants are some jeggings I made with fabric I found locally. (It was $5/m, so I bought 5m!) That fabric is thick cotton and lycra jersey, but something about the two-tone effect camouflages more than just a solid fabric.
I’ve been on the hunt for similar black fabric for over a year, so when Canadian store L’Oiseau Fabrics posted 8ish colours of jegging, I snapped it up! I’ve ordered from them before (remember the peacock tee and cactus tee that I sewed during my #2hourchallenge?) and they seem to have really excellent quality fabric, especially if you like European knits and cotton/lycra blends.
So? Enough beating around the bush – the fabric is great! It sold out in most colours almost immediately, but when they get it back, I’m buying more for sure. I’m not going to wear these as pants, but I like knowing that if anything does get seen, it’s all decent. (Please, please let this post not get me lots of creeps!)
Leggings are something I wear at least three or four times a week (as shorts under dresses, as pyjamas, or as tights in winter). I realise that I’ve had my TNT legging pattern for so long that it’s been years since I properly posted about it… so let me fix that with some Leggings 101 Top Tips!
- Find the right pattern for you. There are now LOTS of leggings out there, but how to find the perfect pattern? For me, I’m a die-hard fan of the Cake Espresso leggings. I was a pattern tester back in 2013, and I still wear that pair – and the 20-30 other pairs I’ve made since! (Yikes, probably more, including what I sew for other people!) Here’s why Espressos are great: you take some simple measurements, like waist, thigh, knee and ankle circumference, and some height measurements like rise and inseam. Then you plot those numbers out on the dot-to-dot pattern, and voila – custom drafted leggings! It took my less than 15min the first time, and now I’ve got the perfect pattern for a short curvy lady. I highly recommend the pattern! The Dreamstress did a great post about Espressos that lets you have a peek at the “drafting” process.
- Size up. If your fabric is thin and slightly sheer like a rayon knit, or stable like this jegging fabric or a scuba, give yourself a bit of extra horizontal and vertical room. I just freehand some extra ease as I cut out the fabric!
- Perfect your waistband elastic. Once you find an elastic type and measurement that works for you, make sure you write it down! I use elastic like this because it has the right amount of stretch and resilience, and keeps things comfortably in place all day!
- Get creative with cutting! Because I’m short, I can fit a pair of leggings from 1m of fabric. However, if your thigh circumference is much bigger than mine, you may find your pattern pieces don’t fit side-by-side on 60″ knits, and you think you need twice as much yardage. Never fear though – you can piece a scrap of knit to the wide of your yardage, and cut with your crotch curve poking into that section. The seam will be hidden where no one will see it! Likewise, if you need a smidge more height than your yardage allows, you could piece a “yoke” effect to add height to the back rise.
See? I told you I love leggings!
This post is not sponsored in any way – I bought this fabric with my own money.
I’d love to know what fabrics or patterns you like for leggings – I’m always looking for MOAR leggings in my life!