Carla Trousers by Vikisews & Promo Code
The Carla Trousers pattern by Vikisews Patterns was carefully chosen after a thorough search for pants patterns with a special element or detail in sewing construction. I became extra picky after enrolling in a Pants Drafting by Lynda Maynard, which deserves a whole blog post on its own. The course empowered me to draft my own pants patterns, and if I was going to purchase a pants pattern from now on, it needed to have something unique to teach me something that I haven’t learnt before. That “something unique” in the Carla Trousers is the 8-button front flap which serves as the closure for these close-fitting, bell-bottomed pants.
Most of the pants patterns I’ve sewn up have either an elasticated waistband, a zipper-front or button-front with a curved or straight waistband. The Carla Trouser pattern doesn’t have a waistband at all. Instead, it has a facing at the front and back waist, and the front flap closure.
There are two darts in the back, and the front is shaped by two vents, which are worked into the openings of the front flap. I was fascinated by how this would come together in terms of sewing construction, and after sewing up these pants, I can say that there is something new that I’ve learnt that I can put in my back pocket. Speaking of which, the pattern has none. I mean, the pattern has no pockets - front or back. There are faux front slash pockets, and I am guessing there are no actual slash pockets so that they don’t complicate the front flap construction. I would definitely add 2 back patch pockets in my next version though. But there is something visually pleasing about the clean lines sans pockets.
The pants pattern is reminiscent of the Sailor Pant design, but fit like secret Yoga pants.
A stretch woven fabric is required for this make as they hug closely to the hips and thighs, before flaring out at the knees to a wide circumference bell-bottom at the hem. They are really comfortable to wear, and allow for full movement at the hips. The fabric that I chose for these pants is the Lady McElroy Chaffinch Bough in Old Gold. This is a soft stretch cotton drill with 3% elastane in it, which makes it perfect for the pants. I love the shade of ochre or gold mustard as the base colour, and there are accompanying shades of turquoise, blue, red and pink that make up the digital print of birds perching on branches of leaves and flowers. This is my first project with Lady McElroy as a brand ambassador, and this fabric is mesmerising to look at. It also feels very soft on the skin for a cotton drill. I have some more fabric leftover after making the Tally Bustier and Carla Trouser co-ord set, and I can’t wait to make something else with this stunning fabric. Maybe a pair of stretch skinny jeans or a jacket.
I’ve also begun a Brand Ambassador program with Vikisews, and my followers and subscribers are entitled to a 20% discount off your purchase of English translated patterns, using promo code GERI. All you have to do is to enter the promo code before completing your purchase online with Vikisews. The code is uppercase sensitive, so make sure you enter GERI in caps. In addition, remember to switch the language to English when you get to the website. Please also note that the code can only be applied to the Vikisews website, and NOT the Etsy store.
After taking the pants drafting course, there are many things that I really appreciate about the pants patterns from Vikisews. So far, I’ve made 4 different patterns and the drafting and fit is very good for me. What I really like is that the pants patterns always come with the grain-line drawn in dead centre in the front and back. This is extremely helpful especially when adjustments have to be made, and if you want to make a press line in the centre of the front and back of the pants. Also, there are always notches made at the knee level, and the lower hip line is drawn in as well. Again, these references are crucial if adjustments need to be made, and to check for perfect fit. Many pattern companies leave these markings out, which make pants fitting more cumbersome.
Another attractive feature for Vikisews patterns is that they are already adjusted for length. You can choose the height category that you fall under when you purchase the patterns. So most of the time, I don’t have to make length adjustments. And if I do, then the drawn-in hip line and knee level help me decide exactly where I should take the length off. Keep in mind that some of the pants patterns are designed to go all the way to the floor because there is an assumption that you might want to wear heels with the pants. For example, the Carla Trousers are drafted like that, and even though I chose the pattern in my height category, I still had to take off 5 inches from the length because I hardly wear any heels.
I sewed up a size 38 for the Carla Trousers based on my waist and hip measurements. Vikisews patterns are one-size patterns, and this may be a pro or a con depending on your needs. If you have to grade between sizes, then one-size patterns don’t give the full flexibility required; but if you need to do minimal adjustments, then it’s convenient and saves paper. I usually check the “Circumference Ease” page for every pattern before I choose the size that I think will best fit me. I float between a size 36 and 38, and for my Carla Trousers, I had to take in between ⅛” and ¼” at the side seams. Most of the time with dresses and tops, I will go with a size 36; and for the bottoms, I will go with size 38.
These pants were not difficult to make, and the instructions were good. My only suggestion is to baste the side seams first at the suggested ⅜” seam allowance, so that it’s easier to make adjustments when fitting the pants. There is quite a bit of hand sewing to be done since there are 8 buttons, and the facing and the hem are hand-stitched according to instructions. I always enjoy this part of the process though, but I just wanted to give a heads-up for those who want to know how much time is involved in the making of the pants. The pattern also gives a time estimate for how long the project takes to complete.
I love my Carla Trousers, especially when sewed up in this gorgeous print. There are many more great patterns on the Vikisews website. Check them out and don’t forget to use the GERI promo code to get 20% off. Happy sewing!