Elle pants from Style Arc are pull-on pants for stretch wovens or ponte knits and similar fabrics. Word is, they used to include a swatch which you could use to gauge the stretch needed, but they no longer do, so I used fabrics recommended by bloggers, and they’ve worked out quite well so far. I made my first pair from ponte de roma, which stretched from the edge of the design drawing to the middle of the “Front View” drawing above. That turned out to be plenty of stretch. Then I checked the stretchability of a woven knit hybrid from EmmaOneSock to make sure it would work.
You must then make sure to lay the pattern out so that the maximum stretch goes across the body, even if that means laying the pieces out perpendicular to the selvage.
You sew up the inside leg seams first, then from the front center waistband to the back center waistband in one go, and then the outside leg seams.
At this point you have a pair of pants with no shaping apart from the cut of the design. Sew the waistband into a ring and apply.
Cut wide elastic so that it’s very nearly the same size as the waistband, sew it into a ring as well, and encase it inside the waistband.
Now fold the waistband back so that you’re sewing the two edges of the original waistband together. One edge is now sewn to the upper edge of the pants, so you’re sewing through three layers of fabric. I used a zigzag stitch.
This is difficult for me, but I figure I’ll get better at it as I got along. Or I might baste it next time. I think that this is what I should have been doing with Simplicity 1467 when I was having so much trouble figuring out the waistbands. It seems odd, and it leaves a messy edge. I should probably go back in and finish every edge in some way. However, this does make a smooth waistband for pull-on pants.
I finished the hems with twill tape and a hand-sewn hem after trying and disliking a couple of other options.
The pants are comfortable, well-fitting, and have a nice silky drape. They are made of polyester with 5% spandex, but it’s a new high tech fabric and feels very nice.
I’m between two sizes on the size chart, so I chose the larger, and these pants fit neatly at waist and hip but are not very tight in the leg, so I can feel comfortable and age-appropriate for work. Honestly, they’re so simple that you can easily tweak the fit however you like.
- 2 yds of fabric, $38.00
- elastic, $3.99
- pattern and thread already counted in the first pair
- total: $41.99
This is a significant savings over comparable ready-to-wear.
I also now feel as though I have enough pants for the fall, though I might make some more of these.