In Sewing

a haircut, a cat, and a pair of pants.

I finished these pants last week but haven’t had a chance to share them until today. I love all this Spring rain we’ve been getting but Wil and I always seem to miss the dry window of opportunity for outdoor photos. Luckily we caught a break long enough to get a few shots in the yard. My little friend here decided to join us.


These are my new favorite pants! They’re made from the Marlene pattern by Burda Style and even though the directions are less than helpful, I’m happy to report I made my way through alright after the initial muslin. I can’t say anything bad about Burda because I love their selection of downloadable patterns (all for around five dollars), but I am noticing a serious lack of sewing instruction and there are definitely no diagrams. I’d be lying if I said I was the type of girl who always follows instructions, because I rarely do (it comes back to bite me usually, I might add) but I do like to glance at illustrations as I work through things. Luckily I’ve sewn enough simple pairs of pants to get through the construction without help but I hadn’t done a lined pocket quite like this before so they totally threw me off the first time around! The pockets on my muslin definitely empty out into the pant leg and are completely useless haha!


Not to worry though, I clearly figured it out. Honestly the construction isn’t that difficult at all, I just tend to confuse myself with the wording when reading directions. …it’s definitely a “problem” I deal with. If there is such a thing as directional ADD, I’m sure I have it. Whoops I’m losing my train of thought here… oh right the pants. Awesomest pants ever!


I could have done a bit better job on the waistband but aside from that, the Marlene Trousers are everything I’ve ever wanted in a pants pattern. I thought I wanted a pair of trousers with a fly front, but turns out I don’t have man parts that necessitate a zipper in the front, and I’ve always preferred lapped zippers anyways, so there’s no Master Of Sewing telling me I HAVE to learn how to sew pants with flys right now. So I’m not going to. However, the common problem with lapped side zippers and pants is: no side pockets. I don’t mind not having back pockets, but I need some pockets in the front. So once again, these pants are everything I want/need in a pair of pants!


The legs are also gigantic! Again, a want/need for me. Lately I’m borderline obsessed with the wide-leg pant styles of the 1920s and 30s. They’re just so comfortable! Oh and the fabric I picked for these pants is fantastic. It’s a lighter weight denim by Robert Kaufman that I bought from Hawthorne Threads. I think it’s the perfect thickness for summer! The thread pattern makes the fabric look almost shiny from a distance. It’s pretty neat stuff. Wonderful to sew with!


Outfit Details:
Pants – Marlene Trousers via Burda Style
Shirt – Antique (another gift from my aunt)
Art Deco Bobby Pins – ModCloth
Shoes – Target
Glasses – c/o Victory Optical
Hair Color – Manic Panic Vampire Red

photos by William Waldon


To match my 1920s/30s obsession I went and got another hair cut (just in time for Loran’s 1920s sew-along!). I know I prefer my real hair to be short (any photo of me with long hair is actually a wig!) but it’s taken me several cuts to find the perfect short style for me. I think this might be it! It seems to be working really well with my natural wave.


This here is my friend, Karl Cat. He wanted to see why we were standing around in the side yard, looking like we were free to pet him. He’s really handsome so I obliged his request.


…he doesn’t like when Wil tries to pet him though haha!


“Dude. Hands off the brow.”

I think this is the project that officially got me excited for summer sewing! I also bought two shirt patterns from Burda that I can wait to make, and I’m even more excited to pick fabric for them, especially since Cotton + Steel just went live at Quilt Market! Ahh! Must have ALL THE C+S FABRIC!

What are you working on lately?



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  • Your trousers are gorgeous. I love the style, and would never have thought the fabric was denim. And I absolutely love your hair, that colour is fabulous!!

  • love the fabric and your pants! You look wonderful.

  • Got to love those Burda instructions! Love your trousers (pants), they look fab. (And your haircut and colour and cat too.)

  • Those trousers are everything! Wide-leg-trouser-dream-pants! Totally great make. I can see you wearing these a bunch. And I love your sassy new ‘do! Nothing like a fresh cut to make you feel fabulous!

  • I’d say A+ on your sewing adventures and new haircut, but sorry the cat gets A++.

  • Really great job with the pants.I am still to apprehensive to try pants. Cute haircut too and great for summer. Finally I love your cat.

  • karen

    Your new cut is really cute and suits you so well. You look happy. Yay.

  • You are so cute! These look great on you! I’m not usually one for wide-leg pants, but these are really cute. Loving the hair, too! And dude, you’re not the only one with directions ADD (well, I have regular ADD too, but…)! I always get distracted and do something in the wrong order. Let’s just say my seam ripper and I know each other reallllllly well.

  • Great trousers! Love your hair like this too! And those photos of Karl are hilarious – he’s got such huge paws!!

  • BAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA your cat’s face in the last picture is hilarious.

  • Love the pants! Love the haircut! Love the cat!

    The only thing is, please be careful climbing stairs or stepping up on curbs when wearing really wide-legged pants. Around 1990 they were in vogue and I got a pair, and when stepping up onto a curb, my toe caught the hem and down I went in an instant, hearing my left pinkie finger snap between me and the sidewalk when I hit it. NOT fun. I threw those pants out as soon as I got home. My pinky is still twisted from the greenstick break.

    • Ah yes, big pants do come with their fair share of potential hazards. Though if you saw how I dressed in high school during the rise of the JNCO jean, you’d know I have lots of practice 😉 😉

  • I LOVE these pants! i’m really feeling a wide leg trouser at the moment too. These are delightfully wide legged and look fabulous in your fabric!

  • I’m so happy for your pants! I mean for you, that you have pants, that you are happy with. So I’m happy for you and your pants, or you in your pants. Whatever you’d prefer. 😉

  • Great job on the pants. I love how the pleats lay as you wear them. And I’m head over heals for that shirt! The hand crocheted lace & cuffs are divine!

  • That blouse is beautiful with those pants! And your hair looks great!

  • Heather Lou

    Well, you already know how I feel about these because my love for mega wide legged pants is well documented (and these look GREAT!). But sweetheart? I JUST BOUGHT THE SAME FREAKING FABRIC. I love how we both have a totally different sewing style but have all these funny overlaps. Literally, same fabric. I was even intending to make WIDE LEGGED PANTS with them, but the description said they were more of a lightweight chambray so I was thinking about making an Archer instead. But they seem like a good pants weight, right?

    • That’s so awesome we bought the same fabric!! I can’t wait to see what you decide to make with it (I’m voting for matching pants of course)! There’s the Railroad Denim, and then there’s the Railroad Denim Deluxe, which is what this is. The Deluxe version is double the weight of the original which is a chambray shirt weight. The Deluxe is definitely a bottom weight for sure, think on par with a bottom weight linen…but more denim-y lol. Just wait to you get it. I promise you’ll love it!

  • I just colored my hair red not too long ago and I’m obsessed with it. I’ve always loved red hair.
    Nice pants too!

  • Love the hair and your new trousers. What an adorable kitty.

  • Those trousers are amazing! They look so elegant and comfortable. I love your haircut as well!

  • Excellent cat, hair and trousers – the size of those legs! Amazing!

  • Maureen Clayton

    Love your cut and colour and cat! And the pants are cute too!

  • Great outfit! Love your new friend 🙂

  • Oh, what beautiful, elegant trousers, I love them! Your haircut is a real success too, it suits you so well! x

  • great haircut and the colour is even better 😀

  • Oh my goddess, your haircut is fantastic !!!! And your trousers, I have this burda model but I’m sure it’s most beautiful to wear with long legs like you as I’m …. HIhiiih So ‘I’ve never do it

  • josiemary

    Lovely trousers, the fabric looks so soft. Love the last picture, made me chuckle 🙂

  • Honora

    Do you have any sizing issues with fit and Birds? Ever pattern I’ve used, I end up making enormous to fit around my grand Double D’s. Their size charts insist that I need 6 sizes too big. Very frustrating, I’m working on my tailoring techniques. Wondering if anyone else has these crazy differences in pattern size and reality

    • Hmmm, well my chest Real Estate is less than Grande so I can’t say I usually have trouble in that department, but it definitely helps to cross reference your measurements with the finished measurements of the pattern. You can measure the actual pattern pieces to help get an idea for what that number will be, and see how much wearing ease they’ve added. You may need to go down several sizes and learn to do a Full Bust Adjustment instead. You’re not crazy, patterns are just weird sometimes!

  • Adore your cut and current colour!!! You have the loveliest natural waves – mermaids everywhere are, I assure, supremely jealous of them. 🙂

    ♥ Jessica

    • Hehe! Mermaids everywhere. Your analogies never cease to make me smile, Jessica 🙂

  • stgilbert

    Glorious! The one word I can think of that perfectly describes everything in this post 🙂

  • Those pants are seriously good on you and that haircut…AMAZING!! I have no words for those bobby pins other than to say I’m headed to Mod Cloth right now. Kisses to the kitty : )

  • Great pants! Your haircut is amazing. Very vivid colour. Redheads get lots of attention!

  • very nice trousers, love the fabric and gorgeous hair ;o)