Is it just me or did summer seem to pass us by in the blink of eye? I seem to have abandoned all hope of sunshine and am now honing in on my winter wardrobe.
As I am now working in a more corporate environment than the last few years, I am finding that my handmade wardrobe needs a bit of a reboot. One noticeable gap was a really good pair of tailored trousers.
I spotted the Sorell trousers by Pauline Alice on Instagram a few weeks ago and immediately a dark grey pair sprung to mind and, as luck would have it, when I visited Backstitch in Cambridge last week, they had the perfect fabric. It is a charcoal grey cotton suiting with a tiny bit of a nap so that when you run your hands across it, one direction is definitely smoother, so I bore that in mind when cutting out the trousers.
As they stocked the printed patterns as well at Backstitch, I bought that too, as the packaging is so pretty.
I had some of this gorgeous Miss Matatabi cotton lawn left over from making a top. If you look closely, they are actually tiny cats!
There are two versions of the trousers, you can make a patch pocket version, but I opted for the welt pockets as I thought they looked smarter.
The welt pocket instructions seemed a little confusing and are unlike any other welt pockets I have sewn before, so I was a little nervous about going ahead, as once you’ve slashed into them, there is no going back! Luckily, I checked on Pauline Alice’s website, and she had done quite a detailed tutorial on making the trousers, so I read through that thoroughly and it put my mind at ease.
I decided to make the pockets one at a time, just in case I messed up, as then I wouldn’t have ruined both sides of the trousers! The first side took me about 40 minutes to figure out, but I got the second one done in 5 minutes, so it is a breeze once you know what you are doing.
My only mistake with the welt pockets is that because the lining is all cut from one piece of fabric, my print ended up being upside down due to the way it is folded. Not a massive big deal as it is on the inside, but it does annoy me slightly and I think that if the pattern piece was the other way around, it would resolve this issue.
I love the tailored details of the Sorell trousers. The dip in the back waistband, is a technique used in men’s tailoring, and gives them a really lovely finish.
I also love the fully functioning watch pocket on the front of the trousers! This can be a little bit tricky to sew and you need to be absolutely sure of the fit before you add this in, as there is no going back afterwards!
I made my trousers in the smallest size, as I like high waisted trousers to really fit well, with no gaping at the back. I did, however, let out a quarter of an inch on both side seams after trying them on as the fly front was pulling off to the side ever so slightly.
I hemmed mine using the blind hem function on my machine. It gives a really lovely finish and saves all of that pesky hand sewing! You can see in the pictures below what it looks like from the inside and outside.
If you would like me to do a tutorial on how to use the blind hem foot, please let me know.
Rather than a buttonhole on the waistband, I opted for a trouser hook and bar as I wanted a clean finish on the outside.They are a bit fiddly to attach but I think the finished look is worth it.
I really love the look of these trousers and I think they will be a real staple in my winter work wardrobe. I’ve purposely left them a little long so that I can wear heels with them, but I also think they will look fab with a pair of brogues.
I’m thinking a pair in a black stretch cotton will be next on the list!
I have a enough fabric left over for a pencil skirt, so if anyone has any pattern recommendations, please let me know!
- When sewing the triangles of the welt pockets, use your zipper foot to help you get really close to the fabric
- Bar tack the tops of the belt loops for a strong finish
- Consider the print direction of the welt pocket facings
- Use a blind hemming foot to make hemming a breeze
- Use a metal teeth zipper for a professional look
- Consider the shoes you are most likely to be wearing when deciding on hem length