I am new to Papercut patterns which is an independent New Zealand company. The first thing draws me to their products are the nifty package. Very cute hanger style, you can hang your cut patterns to the wall and pretend you are a designer working away in a studio!
Image from Papercut pattern company website
I am a sucker for pretty packages so of course I ordered three of them already. Ooh-la leggings are the first ones I made as the weather getting colder I am in the desperate needs of some warm leggings.
They have been many fantastic versions of the leggings floating on the blogsphere. I am very impressed by Kbenco’s running tights and she also did an extensive review on her blog . I could not agree more with her with regards to the sizing and pattern instructions (or the lack of!)
I used two colours bamboo jersey (navy blue and light grey) as I feel this pattern is particularly suitable for multiple tones to accent the unique seamlines which arc at the front and back. I chose size M based on my waist measurement.
Since I know the fitting would be extremely difficult to adjust after overlocking, I machine basted the pieces together using the biggest straight stitches in my sewing machine with the tension purposely set unbalanced. After the legging took shape I tucked an elastic under the waist. The basted leggings looked like this
Not too bad, apart the front piece had some pooling. There is nothing less attractive than baggy leggings, so I pinned the extra fabric to determine the amount to trim off. (that would be impossible to do if you had overlocked and topstitched the seams)
I basted with 1cm seam allowance (as indicated in the pattern) but used 1.5cm instead for the “official” sewing for a closer fit. ( I will sew a size S next time)
I decided to leave the baste thread in when overlocking instead of ripping the legging apart first. This really helps keep the pieces together instead of pinning. My overlocker is not very good with curve seams and circular seams (no free arm) and I don’t want to risk damaging the knife by leaving pins accidentally. If you want to remove the thread afterwards, using seam ripper to rip a few stitches before would really help. This method has a drawback which is the baste threads can be encased within the overlocked seam hence difficult to remove. Or you can leave them in given the colour of the baste thread matched with your fabric ( I used white so had to get rid of them). It is also imperative to rip the intersected seams open about 1 inch on each direction and follow the exact sequence for joining pieces as indicated in the pattern instruction.
I had to chop about 8inches off from the bottom, I am 5 feet 7 so the pattern is extremely long. I used the chopped bits to make bands around the ankle (again very awkward process as my overlocker’s lacking free arm). On the bright side, all pieces fit together beautifully and it was quick to sew.
Despite the mixed feelings I had during the making, these legging looked great and felt amazing. They are not skin tight so will not give me the “camel toe” look, (if that’s the look you are after it can be achieved by using higher lycra content and one size smaller). Since I made them I have slept in them, cycled in them and worked out in them, basically been living and breathing in them for a couple of days straight. (yes I will wash them eventually). I can safely say they are the most comfortable, versatile and flattering leggings I have ever own, i can see many many more pair coming – yoga pants, running pants, or lounging pant. It beats LuLuLemon’s $100 pair of pants every time, on design, originality and quality. ( I think their price is insane non?)
I think the design is ingenious, and really inspire you to be creative. I think they will look great with a decorative coverlock stitch at the curved seams or with an accent piping (can you add piping to jersey?). It is also a great opportunity to use out your jersey scrapes which are too beautiful to be tossed. It really uses very little material and you can mix and match.
My verdict: sold.
Till next time