HSM #1 – Procrastination: Trying Trousers


This is the first challenge of the Historical Sew Monthly 2016:

Procrastination – finish a garment you have been putting off finishing (a UFO or PHD) or make something you have been avoiding starting.

Well, procrastinate I did. Not the sewing, I finished this in the first week of January, but I just didn’t get round to writing about it, so my first entry for this year is, alas, late.

I made a pair of trousers. Trousers are unquestionably practical, when you spend a lot of time with a toddler (i.e. on the floor or at the playground), but I never liked to spend my precious sewing time on something so unexciting. Moreover, the few attempts I have made over the last years, with original 1930s or modern 30s style patterns were not crowned with success, waist and/or crotch just never turned out right. So I thought it a good thing to finally make another serious attempt – it can’t be so difficult!

I used the Smooth Sailing pattern by Wearing History, which I have owned for years but never used – I was never really convinced of the pleats in the front and the turn-ups; feels too Rosie-the-Riveter-y for me. Still I read many positive reviews about it and I had it in stash. Our moving house has made any purchases inopportune for the time being, so I used a fabric from stash, too, a blend of something or other, non-soiling, crease-proof and not very pleasant to touch, but not a bad choice for something that might turn out as a toile after all.


The pattern worked fine. The trousers fitted perfectly without any adjustments, the waist is high and the crotch low enough, and the fabric looks nice in them. Since I lined it, it is not too uncomfortable to wear. I am still no great fan of the pleats though (and went without the turn-ups anyway), so I will try another pair without these, maybe for the Gender-Bender-Challenge in April. All in all: not a favourite, but a good step on the way.

The Challenge: Procrastination

Material: I don’t remember – cotton, I think, but with a lot of something else in it, and polyester lining

Pattern: Smooth Sailing by Wearing History

Year: about 1938

Notions: thread, zipper, 1 button

How historically accurate is it? The pattern and fit is quite accurate, the fabric most certainly is not. So maybe 70%?

Hours to complete: three evenings

First worn: a couple of times yet, at home

One thought on “HSM #1 – Procrastination: Trying Trousers

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