- General Review - My overall feeling about the pattern
- What I like about the pattern
- Things I would change about the pattern in the future
- Changes I made this time
The first pattern I am reviewing with this change in mind is the Kudzu Cargos from Charming Doodle. General review - Overall, I like the pattern, and I would sew it again, but I would make some changes.
What I like - The design details are visually interesting. I like that there are several options including diagonal leg seams, pleats at the knee, and cargo pockets. These look like a well made pair of store bought pants. Although I didn't like the order of sewing, the directions were quite easy to follow, and I believe that a confident beginner could complete this pattern without any trouble. The rib knit waist is a nice touch and makes these pants pretty comfortable too. The pattern includes distinctly patterned lines for each size (in addition to different colors) which I like since my printer is a relic from another age and only prints in black and white :)
Things I would do differently or didn't like - First, the size chart is off. The pattern clearly states that the hip is the most important measurement, so I cut the size 2 based on the size chart. Bad idea! These pants are way too tight. I felt bad for squeezing Mae into these for pictures. On the thighs you can actually see where the seams are cutting in to her chub, what little she has :) Although she must have felt that the pants were still comfortable because she wanted to wear them all day!
Secondly, and I admit this is kind of nitpicky, I wasn't a huge fan of the pattern layout. There is no way to print only the slim leg or the regular leg option. You really have to print the entire pattern, and I'm a bit of a scrooge when it comes to using my paper and toner, so I generally only print exactly what I need!
The only other critique I have is the order of the sewing steps. The pattern doesn't instruct you to sew the back patch pockets on until after you sew the side seams and the inseam. It would be so much easier to attach them before the side and inseams, which is what I did since I read the whole pattern before starting, thankfully!
Changes I made (no matter how small!) - I added knee patches because they are cute :) Since I chose not to use the cargo pockets I was able to sew and topstitch the inseams like a typical pair of jeans. I also opted to topstitch the outseam from the waist to the top of the thigh, both for durability and because I like how it looks. I sewed the knee pleats toward each other instead of both of the seams pressed down. I also sewed the diagonal seams on the back pocket down instead of up, because I wanted the pocket seams to match the leg seams. And the final change (even though it's not visible) was to use 2" elastic inside the rib knit waistband because I like the finish better than a narrower elastic attached to the rib knit with a zigzag stitch like the directions call for.
Denim - Stretch Pacific Denim in Melon from fabric.com
Grey Knit - Cotton jersey from Joann's