All week I have been hurrying about preparing for my trip. I made a necklace, sewed a bag, and dyed some jeans, but my jeans weren’t the only pair of pants I was taking, and they weren’t the only pair that needed fixing. Nope. If you’ve been following along, with baited breath I’m sure, then you’ll remember that I laid all my clothes out before I started packing. You will also remember a pair of white pants. (In case you don’t, here’s a refresher) Well I bought those pants in 2006, 2007? I can’t remember exactly when, but it was back when flared pants were cool. Or at least I thought they made me look good. Now, they don’t. Now they make be look hippy, and not in the flower child sort of way, but in the mother of a child sort of way. Sad.
But I figured I could deflare them. I mean why not? I didn’t have anything to lose; I couldn’t wear the pants the way they were. So I put them on inside out, and got to pinning.
If you decide to deflare all your flared pants, remember to put them on inside out. Sure, you’ll look funny in the mirror, but you want your stitches to be on the inside of your pants, and not on the outside, so pinning on the inside is a must, and the easiest way to do this is to put them on inside out.
Once I had one leg pinned inside and out, I took the pants off, carefully turned them right-side out, and carefully put them back on. Then I put my intended shoes on (always try clothes on how you intend to wear it, be it heels, boots, whatever, it will make the clothing fall like it will when you do wear it). The one leg looked good, so now I just had to pin the other. In the same spots as the first. With only two eyes and two hands. I did my best, and then repeated the turn and try to see how I did.
I didn’t do too badly, but I wasn’t quite even. So I called for backup. Since my dear, sweet mother was coming to pick Son up, I asked her to help. I put the pants back on, inside out, and she repinned them so they were even.
Then, since I had so much stuff to do, like pack and clean house, my mother, dear and sweet, basted the pants by hand. Now basting is like a long, simple, running stitch, that if you pulled from one end, it would pull the thread completely out. It’s the sewing you did in grade school, with the construction paper.
She chose to use a contrasting thread so it would be easy to see, and therefore remove when the pants were actually sewn.
Once basted, I flipped the pants right-side out, again, and checked them in the mirror. Now would be the time to make any changes, since the basting stitch is simple to remove and redo. But my pants looked good, and out came the sewing machine.
I ran a stitch from the seam of the pants down to the bottom hem, on all sides, with the pants inside out of course. Then, I flipped the pants right-side out again and tried them back on — yes, there’s a lot of turning and trying in this process. I broke out the iron, and ironing board, and ironed down my new seams, oh, and removed the basting stitch. Then I thought.
Now would be the time to cut off the excess fabric, and it would also mean the no turning back point, but I was concerned. Not so much concerned that flares would come back in, it seems they already have, but concerned the my fabric might fray. You see, most commercially bought clothing is sewn together with a serger, and the serger sews all sorts of loops and such that keep the fabric from fraying. I don’t have one of those. So I put the scissors down, and left the excess. After all my trying on, I knew the excess didn’t get in the way, so it wasn’t a big deal.
I’m glad to have new pants. Sorry I don’t have true before and afters, but they’re already in the suitcase. I’m also glad that my new pants didn’t cost me a dime.
Have you ever redone a pair of pants to fit more with your current style?