Thursday, 25 February 2016

22: Plain black yoga pants made in a rush

It was Wednesday and I decided out the blue to book a Pilates class for Thursday lunchtime so the very next day.

Well I have lots of leggings but for some reason I decided I needed yoga pants.
Wednesday night it took me over an hour just to find the pattern I had downloaded at least a year ago and never used from here:

Of course I had then to stick it together so that was probably another hour. Luckily it is not a huge pattern so did not take too long to stick it all together. Then find some fabric from my stash. Well my fabric stash is huge due to my having been obsessed with fabric for about a year before I had the space in which to set up my machine and do any sewing. My other half in fact finds it a constant nuisance because it is all stored in Ikea under bed storage bags which are piled up in the corner of one room. Anyway I have LOTS of fabric to play with which is great because in real life I do not always have the money to buy fabric when I need it so having a largish stash makes for easier creativity.

After much deliberation and re-discovering of my fabrics and lots of holding it against me in front of a mirror I decided on this lovely very silky four-way stretch fabric. Its from my favourite seller on Ebay - Weston Fabrics, and has a really good drape as well whilst still being light and stretchy. It has a slight crepe look to it so is not really your average sports fabric but will work I think. I expect probably most people will make a dress or top from this stuff but I have no "performance" fabric in my stash so went with this. Its a jet black too because I decided after exploring various colours I really do not want to stand out that much in my Pilates class so best to stay black and boring.

Well the pattern is a size medium but what is that? I find I can be anything from an XS to a large depending on the pattern and this is a freebie so who knows. Since this is my first making I stuck with the pattern as it is given so made a medium up. I sewed up using an overlocker (serger) and it went together perfectly. Every seam matched. I made the waistband about 1.5inches smaller since when I tried it on before attaching it it was a bit large widthwise rather than lengthwise. I also kept the waistband plain the same as the rest of the pants. If you look at the original pattern instructions  Jess's design has a patterned waistband to go with the a Blank Slate pattern jacket to make up into a track suit. I might have to consider buying the Blank Slate jacket myself since I read a really good tutorial from Mel the other week about making a hood to fit any jacket and I quite fancy making a hoody.

When it came to hemming these I had had enough and needed to relax a bit before going to bed. After all I am meant to be wearing these tomorrow for sport so cannot be too knackered before I go to sleep because I am sure I am currently very unfit and staying up very late to finish these is really not going to help me. So instead of doing a proper hem I just overlocked it and left it at that. I will do the proper hem next time I get the twin needle machine out. They will be fine for my class tomorrow.

The sizing on me is probably a bit big for yoga pants since I think they are meant to be tight but having said that these are a really good fit. I could wear these to work! I love the waistband but wonder how they will preform in Pilates. I will find out later today. Also today it is so cold in the UK.  I am wearing them to work before I go to Pilates and I am wearing leggings underneath. I probably will have to take off one layer or the other for the actual class so will see how I get on with them first.

Well in the end I wore the leggings for the Pilates class because I find the yoga pants keep falling down ad I did not want to spend the class constantly hitching them up.

My conclusion: If I want to wear these without leggings underneath ( which help to keep them up!) I need to sew some elastic next to the waistband so it is hidden when it folds over. That will stop them falling down. Maybe I should try some transparent elastic.

I read a great tutorial on this from Maria Denmark not so long ago:

In the end a week later I have I sewed 1 inch elastic to the inside waistband with a zigzag stitch. I have lots of 1 inch elastic since I bought a whole roll of it from ebay so I decided since I am unsure if this is even going to work to use what I already have.

And it worked really well and I have worn them several times since. Heres how it looks:

So thats fixed the problem and to be honest I would definitely make these again either in the same size but with the added elastic or alternatively make them in a slightly smaller size. Jess gives directions on how to do this on her blog by drawing round some trousers you already own.

Having said that this will work best if you already have some yoga pants but I do not so I may just try slashing the original pattern down the centre front and back of each piece and take in by about half an inch so around 2 inches in total. I think then they will be perfect and much tighter fitting to wear as yoga pants.

In the end though if you want slightly flared yoga type trousers this is a really nice pattern  and its FREE and I would recommend this pattern. In all this project from putting together the pattern to finishing ( without a proper hem) took me about 3 hours.I did do a twin needle stitched hem when I had a chance a week later so they are actually finished now and I still love them.

Thanks for reading and hope to see you back here soon,


  1. Nice yoga pants. Really liked them. And want to have few alo yoga pants for my yoga sessions. Was in need of best yoga pants then my cousin suggested me these pants. Very happy to wear them for my exercise as they are very comfy.

    1. Thank you Gianna. Yes they are very good for exercise. Especially since the pattern is free. I had a look at the alo yoga pants. I reckon if you had a leggings pattern with side stripes you could make these quite easily. You would need the front and back pieces and just replace the side strip with these bits. It would be a bit fiddly to make all those extra small straps but would work I think. I had a quick look at patterns and something like McCalls M7482 or Simplicity 8212 would probably work. If I have time I will have a go this weekend and let you know how they turn out.

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