30s linen trousers
Added Mar 6, 2010
This is a project that has actually been finished for a couple weeks, but because I kept forgetting to get photos, it’s taken me a bit! This project is from a 1930s reprint pattern (available at the Vintage Fashion Library: http://vintagefashionlibrary.com/) that I fell in love with because of the nautical style (see final image of the pattern cover) and easy-to-wear looks.
The slacks pattern, a reprint of an original 30s pattern, was like many from the era in needing some fitting modifications. What is commonly referred to as the “diaper look” among many vintage seamstresses; older pants patterns often have very long crotch seams. Sometimes this results in pants that look like they’re hanging around your knees! So I tend to automatically adjust the crotch length before I begin. I also reduced the amount of width in the back upper legs and front inner seam. This helped create a more fitted backside, which I find is just more flattering. The usual waist and hip adjustments were made too, along with raising the front upper edge a bit to accommodate for my long torso and high waist.
The final pants (after a muslin fitting!) were made from light-tan linen/rayon blend. I thought about doing a darker, more “practical” color, but really had my heart set on a light colored linen. White or cream doesn’t work with me–I’m too clumsy to be trusted not to get anything on a light colored bottom within the first five minutes of wearing! So tan was the next best thing (and also fit into the “practical” category as it goes with a lot in my wardrobe). The belt buckle is a vintage shell one I bought on Etsy. Perhaps one of the biggest design changes I made with this pattern is to move the zipper from the front (originally the zipper is installed along the front over the hip) to the left side. The original look seemed too sporty for the more sophisticated fabric color, plus I like side zippers!
These are super comfortable–I could seriously wear these forever! lol. I would say they’re akin to yoga pants in the softness and looseness of the cut. Plus, I love how flattering the shape is, compared to most slacks. The 30s definitely knew how to cut pants for a woman’s shape!