The Auber-chinos.

The next instalment in the *Naomi makes all the pants* saga has arrived.

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These are the Named ( ❤ ) Alpi Chinos. I like the fact that if you say the pattern name fast it sounds like a fancy coffee (as Jo said) or Al Pacinos – “Say hello to my little friends.” However given my choice of fabric colour, I stand by my blog title as the best name for this particular iteration.

Very few people on the interwebs seem to have made these little puppies and I can’t understand why. They are wonderful and I predict I will make many more.

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A few gripes first. While I love Named, they do have some issues.

I’ve reconciled myself to adding seam allowances and tracing the pattern pieces – meh. But it’s really annoying to cut out your back pockets only to find – on a page of what appears to be non-pattern-specific sewing instructions  – a text box telling you to add a 3 cm seam allowance to the top of the pocket. Grrr.

This time there were no overlapped pieces on the pattern (WIN) so I added the seam allowances with coloured pencil, and mainly cut out the actual pattern. I traced the pant leg pieces onto tracing stuff to tissue fit as per Pants for Real People. *Side note, I’ve decided this step doesn’t work for me as I tend to over correct. From now on I will just measure pattern pieces, increase seam allowances and fit the fabric as this is where things work well for me.*

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The other little annoyance was the instructions for making the pockets. What is it with Named and senselessly complicated pocket construction? They have a 3 piece pocket bag construction – overkill. I’ve just made the back of the pocket bag (i.e. the part that rests against your body) into one pattern piece… like EVERY OTHER PANTS PATTERN.

Ok full caps rant over. Other than that, I love the cut and style of these pants.

My alterations:

  1. Deepen the crotch curve – I will pretty much always need to do this
  2. Take in the back inner seam – this means I get a bit more grab under the butt which I like
  3. Added 5cm to the leg length – just in case
  4. Add 1cm to top of pants – this means I can allow for my higher right hip
  5. Add 2cm to the waist band at side seams – I always cut waistbands large and fit to my body as I’m so straight through at the waist, however I’ve noticed a definite tendency to over-correct here so next waistband I am going to make tighter
  6. Pinched out a diagonal CB seam in the waistband – next time I think I would do a small sway back adjustment in the CB seam of the pant too
  7. I also ended up taking some in off the side seams, so I’m not 100% sure what size I fit yet in Named patterns. This fabric has a fair bit of ease in it, so I would still cut the 42 next time just in case

I’m not 100% happy with the way the back legs are hanging – there’s a little bit of pooling and pulling – but I hope to work this out in the next iteration. Which I predict will happen soon as I love this pattern. I also think my next iteration will be made with a far less drapey fabric which the pattern is really designed for.

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Another note on pockets here: the pattern just has you folding the outside edges under 1cm, pressing and attaching. I think sometimes Indie patterns cut their noses off to spite their faces by not including basic tips like stitching the curves with a long stitch and slightly gathering the fabric up so as to make turning on the curve easier. This is something I have definitely encountered as an instruction on Big4 patterns and it makes this job so much easier.

I’ve made these up in some lovely aubergine coloured, light-weight wool suiting from The Fabric Store. It has a nice drape – probably not required for this pattern – and some form of poly something that prevents creasing. I’ve used some of my deco fabric for the inside of the pocket bag – secret lining, always awesome.

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Apart from the gripes identified above, these were easy to sew with good instructions. The funny thing is, after having made my last pair of pants with the first ever fly front I was all “piece of cake mate!” about doing the fly on these. Of course it had a completely different construction and it was like I had never done it before!

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Here in Christchurch NZ, these pants will probably be able to worn most of the year apart from those few unbearable summer weeks where I generally want to camp out in the frozen foods section at the supermarket.

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Another success in the quest for the perfect pants.

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40 thoughts on “The Auber-chinos.

  1. Woop! Finding a pants pattern that suits you is so valuable. I have also had a few problems with pooling/ what looks like twisting of the fabric (on other patterns) – I think you’re right that you can overfit pants though… a few imperfections is fine if you have a garment you can move about in!

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  2. Nice job, and not only because I was wearing my plum-coloured wool trousers today!! 🙂 Whee! Yay for aubergine pants. I also like the way you explain all of your corrections and your comments about the pockets are interesting. I always need a super swayback correction in the back seam and I also seem to always leave the waistband just a little bit too loose (preparing for extra big lunches?). I am going to copy your tip re. raising the top edge slightly as I also have a slight leg length discrepancy because of a pelvis tilt. Interesting. I always note this and then do nothing about it.

    PS I have always had a secret crush on Al Pacino. Don’t ask me why! There’s something about his gritty face and puppy eyes that I have always liked. I especially loved him in Frankie and Johnny (with Michelle Pfeiffer).

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    1. The pants fitting rabbit hole is dark and winding for sure!! I always used to hem my right leg longer, but making the correction at the waistband is so much better. I think being thick waisted I have always had an abhorrence of tight waistbands. I need to remember that fabric eases!
      I support your Al Pacino crush. I have a real thing for grouchy older men – much to the perplexment of my husband – who is younger than me and totally un grouchy – and my friends and colleagues who don’t understand my taste at all!!!

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  3. Love the pants, Al Pacino and the photo-bombing cat! I have similar fit issues at the waist and the rear, so it’s great to hear your tips. And you’re right about being better than any RTW. I’m always over-critical of my own stuff, but shop-bought pants pfftt… FIT NO WHERE!

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  4. The great thing is you’re not only making the pants but wearing them with great enjoyment. The fit worked out very well. Pocket placement on the back of pants and skirts is always tricky. These ones look right. I also like the colorful lining fabric–a dressmaker touch in this case for pants too.

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    1. Thanks Em. I live in trousers and when I identified that – through some wardrobe analysis – it made sense for me to make pants a lot. I’d already made pants a lot – to varying degrees of success – and when I made the decision to focus on pants, started doing the research and bought the book, there was no turning back.

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      1. You’re right. As I get older I’m more like my Mom. More curves but without the balance she had. I’m a bit on the side of a pear rather than an hourglass. Rather than slacks I love longer skirts. Hides many imbalances when worn with a flattering top or blouse.

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      2. The older I get I am more like my gran. She was rocking pant suits in her retirement village so I predict a bright and pant filled future for me 😉I find that pants cover my imbalances where a skirt often highlights. We all have our areas of comfort n’est pas?!

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  5. I love these Alpi-chinos (still LOL’ing at that one)! (And the post title!) The color is all at once a statement but still works as a neutral–magic!! They look great on you, although you are so right that there is often something about trousers that we want to revisit “next time.” Butts and legs are so complicated! 😉

    The pockets sound frustrating; good on you for recognizing that early on and just doing what you know works and saving yourself the trouble. I need to work on this; sometimes I just get into a robotic mode of following directions when I should be thinking more critically and using my experience. I just got an annoying, time-wasting lesson in that area from a Named pattern myself, LOL! Truly a case of working smarter, not harder!! =)

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    1. Word! We both are Named fan girls but that doesn’t mean that we can’t identify areas in our relationship with them that they could work on! I think it was good timing as I has just done a similar pocket construction and also remembered how silly their pocket construction on the Esme Cardigan was. So basically they are now in the ‘written warning’ stage for pockets.
      Thanks for the kind words re the pants, and there’s always areas to tweak. All part of the fun.
      I look forward to reading about your Named ‘bad date’ – hopefully on your blog?

      Liked by 1 person

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