I’ve been trying to update my work wardrobe. I work in a casual environment but because of my level I try to dress a little nicer than just jeans…sometimes. What I’ve realized though is that I need comfy. Jeans are not always comfy so if I can find some slacks that look good and feel good to wear then I’ll be golden.
Last year Style Arc and Threads did a “limited time” promo for a free Style Arc Pants pattern – the Barb. They describe it as: Barb’s Stretch Pant is a new version of our famous Linda pant. Features a slimmer leg but not too slim, perfect for the office. Which actually sounded perfect!
So about that limited time business? Well you can still go get the pattern for free here: http://www.stylearc.com/threads-promo/
I cut a size 20 which was closest to my waist measurement. Because these pants are made of a stretch fabric and have an elastic waist they are very forgiving. However, Style Arc does use 3/8″ seam allowances so you don’t have quite as much room for seam allowance adjustments if needed.
I did a few flat pattern adjustments on these. The first was to add 3″ to the rise. With the wider elastic I wanted them to be up on my natural waist. I used 1.5″ elastic instead of 2″ elastic so I essentially only changed the rise 2.5″. I changed the crotch curve to match the pants I made in my Palmer/Pletsch pants fitting class.
The biggest adjustment was adding pockets. Especially for work, pants must have pockets! I need a place to keep my phone and clip my ID badge. I liked the pockets on the previous mentioned Palmer/Pletsch Class pants so I used those pattern pieces for these pants. I had to redraw the pants from to create the slash pocket. Then I reused the pocket bag, but I had drafted a pocket stay mean for a zip fly. Since these pants are pull ons, I had to redraw the pocket stay to be cut on the fold and match up with the pants front pieces.
Drafting pocket stays is one of the best things I learned in my pants fitting class. If you’ve ever tried NYDJ jeans or pants, they do this to provide their “slimming technology”. Basically it’s built in Spanx! For these pants I had to figure out what kind of fabric to use. The main fabric is a stretch woven, but it would be too bulk to use for the stay. I needed something that would stretch and be thin. I ended up digging through my scraps and finding a piece of black cotton jersey that worked perfectly. It’s a bonus that I don’t have to finish the edges! That makes it be even less visible.
Sorry for the crap photo! I had to play the contrast levels so you could see the black on black.
FABRIC & FINISHES
The fabric is a Sew Classic Bengaline suiting from Joann. It’s normally $10/yd but I’m sure I used a 40 or 50% off coupon. The content is 81% polyester, 15% rayon and 4% spandex. It’s not the fancy bengaline Style Arc recommends (and sells), but I am very happy with it for the price I paid. It’s a perfect weight for these pants.
I used 1.5″ Knit Elastic for my waistband and finished all my seams on the serger.
These are so versatile! I can go casual with a t-shirt or tank and my chucks. For work I wear them with a blouse or sweater and my ballet flats. I have yet to wear these out but they would look great with a slinky top and some wedges.
WHAT I LOVE
- The price (FREE!)
- Quick & easy to sew
- Slim legs
WHAT I DON’T LOVE
- Style Arc patterns are single sized, so if you print the wrong size you have to start all over again
WOULD I MAKE IT AGAIN?
I totally love these pants! The high waist and pocket stay are very slimming and the leg width really is perfect. I like my pants to be slim fitting without being skin tight. These whip up so quickly that I need to make some more!