Monday, October 17, 2011

Sew for Boys - Little Heartbreaker Pants

I was able to make the Little Heartbreaker Pants out of Sewing for Boys: 24 Projects to make a Handmade Wardrobe and I'm happy to report it went a lot better than the To-Go Artist.

The Little Heartbreaker Pants are the dressiest pants featured in the book. They have button hole elastic on the back allowing for changes in waist sizing. There are nice pockets built into it and a faux cuff sew on the legs.

I'm not terribly experienced in sewing pants. I've sewn quite a few pairs of very basic, simple pants that work well, but I'd been wanting to upgrade and add pockets and this seemed like a good pair of pants to try out.

I didn't see any errors in the patterns pieces or the instructions. Several of the illustrations are not entirely accurate... I think a lot of beginner/intermediate sewers will find this confusing at times. Of the written instructions, the only thing I found to be difficult to follow in them was how to complete the front waist band and facing, and unfortunately the picture isn't a help here either so I had to redo that part. And somehow the front (or was it the back?) legs ended up longer than the other side. I'm not sure if this was my fault when I traced the pattern or if the pattern actually is a little off. This really isn't a problem to just cut off and even up before sewing on the cuffs.

The fit on them is ok. The button hole elastic is nice, but I imagine that my son will outgrow the length before I need to adjust the waist. That cuffs on the pants prevent rolling the legs up or letting the out to get longer wear of the pants (well, you could work in some extra length and rip off and reattach the cuff, but that's a lot of work). They are very roomy and probably pretty comfortable. The rise fit over his cloth diapered butt, which is saying something. In a perfect world, I'd want just a little longer on the rise, but it was enough but Michael's diaper's fit a lot trimmer now that he's slimmed down and I'm not sure the rise would have been enough a couple of months ago (the pattern is made for 18m-6/7).

The pants sewed up well and made for high quality finished product. The pattern is very versatile. They are very relaxed pants that can look very casual or more dressy depending on the fabric choice. I can't wait to try them with denim. I think these could probably be modified as shorts and look good. They could be easily lined for colder weather, which would be helpful and I wish they would have included a lining pattern with it (not that it would be hard, but anything to make my life easier would be nice). I made Michael's out of corduroy, but even corduroy will need a little extra insulation when winter hits.

View of the pocket and cuffs. Wide legs.

Very comfortable.

Pretty shapeless in the back. 

Then today I decided to make a shirt to match by upcycling a $2 shirt I got from Target that I accidentally ripped a hole in since Michael needed more long sleeves anyhow.

Bliss helped.

I can't believe that I got this shot. The point-and-shoot gods smiled upon me.

This project was the level that I expected of the book. I'm hoping that the to-go artist was just a poorly tested afterthought and not demonstrative of the other projects in the book but I'll have to try a few more just before I really can make that call.

One of the better aspects of the book is the variety of clothing pieces in it. You really could make an entire wardrobe from this book by choosing fabrics wisely and a little creativity. The clothes were designed to be comfortable for boys to play in comfortably and I think the authors accomplished that well. Many of the patterns were also designed to make use of scraps and old clothes, which is very commendable. Some of the reviews of the book bash it for having too many "ugly" clothes and I don't totally agree. There does seem to be a fit issue with most of the models, but the choice of fabric and consideration of whether certain projects are for play or for dressing up really makes a difference in the looks of the pieces here. For instance, the 'kicking back sweats' are not that attractive, but they are clearly meant to be play clothes so why spend a long time making fancier clothes that your kid is just going to get dirty?

The one piece I feel the book is missing is a nice button up shirt. There is one project called 'the henry shirt' be even with a dressier fabric it still seems too casual for dressier occasions.

One sticking complaint that I have with the book is the illustrations. Honestly, McCall's patterns have better illustrations, eek. This is full color printed book so they really could have done more to make the pictures easier to understand. And the lack of accuracy in the pictures is disappointing.

Coming soon, Michael's Halloween costume! I'm really looking forward to it!


Michelle said...

You do awesome work! That last pic was so cute! And so was the kitty helping. :)

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