I’ve wanted to make a pair of velvet pants for a while and have seen gorgeous inspiration around the web.
Earlier I made a faux wrap dress in a stretch burn out velvet that went really well. This is my first time working with a more traditional velvet. Being a newbie to the temperaments of velvet, I read Katherine Tilton’s recent McCall’s post on working with velvet and relied heavily on her expertise. I also found this great blog Historical Sewing additional tips and I read the BurdaStyle Ebook (which also has patterns) for even more! Know your frenemy!
For my first time with this kind of velvet I decided to purchase the less expensive kind (JoAnn’s). The purple velvet is a polyester content which is easier to sew with than the much more expensive silk and rayon types. First thing I did was throw it in the wash even though the bolt instructions said Dry Clean Only. Turned out fine.
I think the best advice came from Tilton’s blog post. She swears by using a spray adhesive on the seam allowance. All through out the construction I would try different tips to see what worked best. I used Sulky KK 2000.
I used Butterick 5893 pant pattern with modifications. I used a single layer cut out for the pants which was time consuming. I did a double layer for the pockets. As long as I pinned them a lot, I didn’t have any problem with shifting on a double layer. Marking was difficult. Chalk didn’t show up that well. I just pinned into the fabric where the notches are. I deliberately used a pattern that had very few details. The polyester velvet did shift a lot during sewing. I have a Pfaff sewing machine and the IDT worked well but using the spray adhesive was even better as you can see from the photos.
Some of the in and out seams are weird and it almost seems like the fabric is off grain or something. I think it’s not noticeable, but kinda bugs me if I think about it too much.
One special note the pockets are really deep!
The pattern normally would have taken me about 3 hours from start to finish. Using velvet it took approximately 8-10 hours, this includes testing the fabric on my machine, experimenting and confusion on the pockets, ripping out etc. etc.. The cost of the velvet and silk thread was $34.68. The pattern I’m sure I got for $1.99.
Jumping for joy!
And, that’s a wrap! I love my velvet pants and think I’ll enjoy wearing them for a long time!