Saturday, 13 May 2017

Self-drafted Tessuti Leggings

So I finally used my self-drafted leggings pattern to make actual leggings, as opposed to the samples made in class back in July 2016.  The class was excellent, ably taught by Audsley Jones at The Make Company. There were only two of us and it was a very pleasant way to while away a Saturday afternoon.

The finished garment

Love these leggings - not surprisingly they fit well and the fabric makes a difference from the usual boring black.

Creates Sew Slow: Self-drafted Tessuti LeggingsCreates Sew Slow: Self-drafted Tessuti Leggings

The fabric

This fabric came from Tessuti Fabrics within the last couple of years. It is a lovely soft knit but I have no idea of its composition. Not sure it is entirely suitable for leggings and it is possible they won't wear that well.

Creates Sew Slow: Tessuti knit fabric

The fabric does have two-way stretch which is probably essential for leggings. In order to fit the pattern on the fabric the maximum stretch goes up and down the body rather than around.  There is still enough stretch around the body to make these leggings comfortable.

The pattern

I took my measurements according to the instructions and made the pattern last year in class.  For some reason both myself and my classmate ended up with leggings that were way too long. So when I got home I re-measured myself and adjusted the pattern.  These leggings only have an inseam (no seam on the outer leg) which makes the knee area baggy if you don't have enough negative ease but this is easy enough to adjust when you sew them. Being self drafted you can decide how high you want the waistband to come - for me it is just slightly below my belly button.

Creates Sew Slow: Self-drafted leggings pattern

Creates Sew Slow: Self-drafted leggings pattern

If you want to make your own self-drafted leggings the Live Free Creative Co has a good how to guide for both the drafting and sewing. The drafting is simple - a great project if you have never drafted a garment before from scratch.

The sewing

Couldn't be easier. The drafting instructions advise you to use 1" or 3/8" seam allowances depending on the stretchiness of your fabric.  Despite using the crosswise grain with less stretch I still needed to use 1" seam allowances to get the appropriate negative ease.

The inseam of both legs is sewn on the overlocker, then one leg is put inside the other right sides together matching the inseams and the crotch curve overlocked. The hem is turned up on both legs and stitched with a straight stitch on the sewing machine using a ballpoint needle.

For the waistband I used 2" elastic purchased from Silhouette Patterns in a 50 yard roll, which will probably have perished before I use it all. My personal preference is to use wider elastic for waistbands as I find it more comfortable and it helps hold in the tummy. The elastic was cut the same size as my waist then overlapped 1.25" and a large cross sewn to hold the overlapped edges together. The elastic circle was quartered and matched at quarter points on the leggings. The overlapped elastic was placed at the centre back seam. The elastic was overlocked onto the leggings waistband, the fabric / elastic were then turned under and straight stitched in place once again using a ballpoint needle in the sewing machine.

Creates Sew Slow: Self-drafted Tessuti Leggings

It really helps having your garment label in these leggings as it identifies centre back, which despite being higher than centre front I struggled to find when I tried them on pre-label.

The styling

Here are my leggings worn with The Sewing Workshop Bristol Top I made last year, and United Nude Step Mobius ankle booties which you can't really see.

Creates Sew Slow: Self-drafted Tessuti Leggings

And worn with a Storm Well Covered Poncho and my Arche Tykado ankle booties, out in the late afternoon sun.

Arty angle shot photos courtesy of my beloved, who is finding this blogging lark a bit tedious and is worried about my escalating narcissism - hence no head.

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