Let’s distract ourselves with pretty pictures: The Cashmerette Calder Pants Edition

As my Instagram feed gets taken over by masks, I’m feeling the need for some normalcy in my sewing bubble. So instead of telling you about the masks I sewed today, let me show you the Calder Pants I sewed last week!

(Disclosure: Cashmerette sent me my choice of fabric from Blackbird and the pattern in return for taking these pictures for them to use. I was not a tester (that was done months ago) and I am not required to talk about this pattern or promote it, beyond sending them pictures! I’m writing this post because they turned out well and I like them.)

Legs for days, right? That’s pretty impressive given that I’m 5’2″ and I shortened these 6″. In other words, my legs aren’t long but they look it! I sewed a straight size 20 and the only alteration I made was to shorten the elastic in the back to fit my curvy waist. Next time I might shorten the rise 1”, because the tops of my thighs touch above the fabric.

That’s right, ELASTIC! I think I first blogged about my love for elastic waist pants in 2013, so I’m staying on brand with this one.

The back waistband has 2″ elastic, which I chose to topstitch in three lines of triple zigzag so that it is all nicely held in place. I love triple zigzag for sewing over elastic, because if a stitch doesn’t catch, it isn’t as noticeable as with a regular zig zag.

I could probably take out some fullness in the back or size down next time, but then again, flowy trousers aren’t meant to be snug! The back view fits quite a lot like my Pietra Pants from last year. This viscose twill from Blackbird works perfectly with the pattern.

You knew the “Look how far these stretch” pose was coming, right? Voila!

There are in-seam pockets, which frankly had the most complicated possible instructions… which did work just fine, but took up most of the instruction booklet. Just follow each step and you’ll get there in the end. Or sew them your own way, because that is fine too.

Let’s talk about my top, too! This is a Helen’s Closet Ashton top, which I tested last summer. I cut in the shoulders, which I always think suits me better. This is the longer length, because the crop version is VERY cropped. I fell in love with the fabric when I participated in the Style Maker Fabrics fall tour 6 months ago, when I used the black colourway to make a dress. When sh*t hit the fan worldwide a few weeks ago, I spent a bunch of money stocking up on beautiful woven florals at Style Maker, and you’ll be seeing those all spring!

(Phew! I just named dropped FIVE companies in one post: Cashmerette, Helen’s Closet, Closet Case, Blackbird and Style Maker. That might be a turn off for some of you, but I hope at least it shows a) I’m transparent and b) love sewing with free fabric!)

My principal emails out a tip a day from an article on how to deal with stressful times, and today’s tip was “wear bright colours”. I think I’ve got that covered with this outfit and pretty much everything else in my closet! I’m happy with how the outfit came together, and I look forward to warmer days when I can wear it.

Speaking of sewing, testing and reviewing… Did you see that Helen’s Closet just changed their testing process into a paid Quality Assurance program? I’m so thrilled that they referenced my blog post about pattern testing from the fall. Closet Case Patterns has started giving a second free pattern to testers, and I’m currently testing for Muna And Broad who paid for my fabric and sent a copy shop print of the pattern. I am thrilled to see more compensation for pattern testing, and hope we continue to move in that direction. (Ironic that it is happening while sewists worldwide are being asked to sew medical equipment for free, but that’s a topic for another day!) Here’s to incremental improvements in our sewing world!

12 thoughts on “Let’s distract ourselves with pretty pictures: The Cashmerette Calder Pants Edition

  1. Incremental improvement is often the long-lasting kind! Also – I LOVE these pants on you. I actually think they may be amongst the loveliest you’ve made. Gorgeous colour and I don’t even like green (though I might be about to go into a green phase…) Also – the top is equally lovely. And I think the tucked in version is just the way to go. Great proportions.


    1. I’ve made so many wide leg flowy pants now, and i do think these will become a favourite too! While i sewed them i figured they could go to Anne if they weren’t my style, but dammit, i’m keeping them! πŸ™‚


  2. I love that your boss is telling YOU to wear bright colours! Hahahaha.

    These are straight up gorgeous πŸ‘


    1. This outfit is me experimenting with slightly warmer colours now that i’ve got red hair like you… I’d love to see how long these pants would be on you! I bet they would be the perfect crop!


  3. Gillian, this outfit is the absolutely BEST!! Looks like you’re wearing secret pajamas! And I just love the colour of the pants. This whole outfit is so you.

    Just read Helen’s posts too about the changes to her pattern testing process as well. Kudos to you and Meg for inspiring change in this way. My only concern is whether sewists outside of the US, Canada, UK and Australia will get excluded from these paid opportunities because of the additional costs for many of us (ugggh don’t want to say foreigners) to participate in pattern testing that most of you don’t have to deal with. Most indie pattern makers are from those four countries and it gets really expensive really quickly when, for example Barbados currency is US$1 = BBD$2 and to get A0 copies of patterns starts at US$40 per sheet.


    1. That is a really good point, and I think you should email Helen and explain! I wonder, for example, if they could mail you a large scale printout, or give you some extra to cover the time spent printing and taping on letter/A4 paper? One of the reasons I said yes to this particular opportunity was that I wouldn’t have to pay 40% customs fees like I do when I I buy fabric from the US.


  4. I like your pants and how you paired them with the Ashton (which I already own), great look!. I’m trying to think of other indie brands that have a flat front/elastic back pant because the Calder isn’t quite what I’m looking for in the leg shape Can you think of any off hand?


  5. This outfit is great, love it all! I was wondering whether to make the Calder, and you have inspired me to go for it! Thanks πŸ™‚


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