C1019: Crimson and Clover (minus the Crimson)

C1019 Colette Clovers

Do you pick your fabric and then let it inspire what pattern it should go with? Or do you choose your pattern then go hunting for the fabric you’ve already envisaged it must be made out of? 


More often than not, I’m the latter. And I specifically went shopping knowing I wanted to buy fabric to make a pair of Clovers. Problems begin fairly early on with this approach though because I’m forever seduced by potentially inappropriate fabrics.


The seductive fabric in question is a duckegg twill coating – I spent forever in Tessuti umming and ah-ing over whether or not a wool coating fabric would be suitable, nay – practical – for a pair of pants. In the end, well – you know what happened. Wearing time will tell whether or not this was a smart decision!


Because of the wool, I lined them with a white and navy blue polka dot silk. Who in their right mind doesn’t love polka dots? I’m a tad annoyed that the photos seem to emphasize things that don’t really come to light when looking at them in person, but hey, c’est la vie. 

Surprisingly comfy to sit in for a pair of
very close fitting non-stretch pants!

I know that fitting this pattern has been a challenge for some, and I definitely didn’t get away scott-free. There’s a good reason why there hasn’t been a blog post on here for quite some time – I made FOUR practise versions of this before I got the fit right. Frustration quite literally was a moving target on this project. Changes made:
 – scaled up a size to take into account my non-stretch fabric
 – added small darts to the front & reduced the waistband to fit
 – reduced the length (…the capri version probably would have been perfect for me!)
 – increased the rise (I have an uber loooooong waist – hip measurement)
 – shortened the crotch length
 – made the crotch curve shallower (it’s a really deep curve!!)
 – tapered both the side and inseam hip down to get a straight leg fit

I’ve come to the conclusion that I need to relax a little when it comes to fitting patterns – especially pants. There’s this idea in my head that if I get a pattern to fit perfectly (a fairly subjective thing when we get down to the minute details), I’ll somehow manage to overcome what irks me about my body shape. Whilst a good fitting garment is going to be more flattering than a badly fitting one, accepting that there is no pattern that is going to make my legs appear longer/straighter/slimmer/whatever has been a quantum leap for me. 

It’s a little liberating too though… my beau and I had a giggling fit at being able to recognise my rather distinctive leg shape on the pattern paper once I’d transferred all the adjustments across :)

C1019 Clover detail 6
My smoothest yet invisible-zip-to-seam transition!

I also made a few little additions to the pattern – man style pockets at the front replacing the odd little coin pocket things that come with the pattern, and putting single welt pockets on the back. 

To do the front pockets I used the pattern pieces from Pattern Runway’s Sweet Shorts, which worked a treat. 

For the single welt pockets I used the same process as for my Sweet Shorts albeit adding in one extra step. For the pocket lining on my Sweet Shorts I used the same fabric as the rest of the shorts, so it didn’t matter if the welts sagged because you would only ever see the blue polka dot fabric. I didn’t want the lining fabric to show through on these though, so I needed to add a backing to the welt to keep the look homogeneous. 

C1019 Clover detail 4
Single Welt pockets at the back…

As for the end result, I like them. Whilst the high-waisted pants look is something I’ll have to get used too, they are extremely comfortable. The original waist location of the Clovers was mid-way between my hips and waist which was horridly uncomfortable (I sat around in that toile iteration for a good half a day to convince myself of this), and reducing the rise back to hip level just looked wrong. Also, the man style pockets seem to be a great cheats way of getting a close fit with a non-stretch fabric, but still being able to sit comfortably because of the room for movement they allow. 

C1019 Clover detail 5
…Peek-a-boo pockets at the front :)

In the end what I really like about this pattern is that its so versatile – you can make them either dressy or casual. I do think it’s worth spending the time to get the fit right purely because the look is so timeless – I can definitely see myself making this pattern up again.

C1019 Clover detail 3
French Seams for the Lining

Whilst away on holiday I agreed with myself that for every garment I sew on my return, I would take the time out to make it the best I could, and I’m really pleased with these, both on the inside and the outside. This means I’ll be posting on a less regular basis due to my new ‘slow-clothes’ mantra, but I figure seeing as ‘slow-food’ is so good then this has to be too :) 

C1019 Clover detail 1
Zip end covering

I also seriously need to look at purchasing an overlocker. Colourful rayon seam binding does make me happy – but its such a black hole for sucking up all my sewing time!

C1019 Clover detail 2
mmm… pretty seam binding

Oh yeah – I’ve also become a Pressinatrix. Do try it – the results speak for themselves.



  1. Beautiful job on the details and they look great on you. Thanks for the reference to the Pressinatrix. I enjoy Gorgeous Fabric's blog, but had missed that one.

  2. You have a great eye for detailing. These are great. THe binding and welt pockets are wonderful.I'm trying to slow sew as well but I get feel time pressured when I have the finishing details to do.

  3. Your details look fantastic, and so professional too! I love the pop of orange colour from the rayon seam binding and your welt pockets are perfectly executed. I'd be interested to know what you think of these pants made up in coating fabric after you've worn them for a while. They certainly look nice!

  4. They look great! I love the duckegg colour! I've been thinking more about slow clothes recently. I think a good garment is something you will wear over and over! Fabulous! xx

  5. Wow! Your garments are always gorgeous but these are particularly amazing. Will you make them again? In a stretch fabric?

  6. These are so beautiful. I love the colour and the fit is amazing. I'm really hoping the wool works out because these are so pretty.

  7. They look great! I really love the color and the polka dot lining is so cute! I have to give you credit for making FOUR practice versions. I don't know if I would of had the patience.

  8. Such pretty clovers!! Yes the toiles are a pain in the backside, but the pants fit you great. I love the duckegg coating – it looks like it will make for a very sturdy, warm pair of pants and the color is just so beautiful. My favorite shade of blue/turquoise. I'm seriously impressed with all your sweet little orange seam bindings and the zipper binding – I definitely believe in slow sewing, but I DO have a serger and am happy to use it – with much less pretty results, might I add!

  9. They really look beautifully made and a great fit – and I love these colours together too (this blue + that orange = one of my all time fave combos). I don't know how you had the patience for several muslins and then on top of that to make the final pants so carefully…. but it is obviously worth it! I know nothing about sergers but would love one too – have to assume they make it quicker to finish something neatly!

  10. LOVE the pants and all the fabulous details! The clash with the orange and the blue is so satisfying and the pants look like a fabulous fit. Well done again!

  11. Melanie, you've done another fantastic job bringing that fabric to life – I love the fact that you've chosen wool suiting for a pair of pants – suited to our Melbourne weather. Your attention to detail is perfect and you bring in colours so well. Slow sewing definitely if it brings these results. Congrats!!

  12. I do to. These sat around for a week complete all but for heming the legs. The little details at the business end of a sewing project are the hardest to get done I always find!

  13. Absolutely. I ain't finished with this pattern yet. As soon as I come across a stretch fabric I like for these, you will be seeing another pair :) Thanks!

  14. Thanks Gabrielle! I'm head over heels for these colours, especially the hidden bits of orange :) I'll get around to getting a serger one day… hopefully soon :)

  15. Yup – rayon seam binding has a special place in my heart – such an easy way to add a happy colour for something different! Thanks :)

  16. These are really lovely. All your extra special details really take them up a few notches. I'm glad you included a close up of the fabric – so pretty.

  17. Ugh, I'm not a fan of making practice versions, but your hard work definitely paid off. Nice fit, excellent welt pockets, and very fun fabric choice.

  18. Very brave making pants Melanie, but they look great! I dare not venture into this area though, hard enough making dresses! Looking forward to your next project…

  19. Nice pants! Sewing pants definitely intimidates the masses! You did so very nicely and I love the fabric you used. It's a great color on you:) BTW, I can't believe I didn't know you had a blog. As soon as I realized I instantly added you to my blogroll. Can't wait to see what other projects you get into (wink)!

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