Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Rip and Sew So

I haven’t sewed anything much for a couple of years.  But today I hauled out that last scrap of black denim Eldest Daughter bought me a few years back and squeaked out a pair of pants. 

Now to me, a good comfortable pair of pants should have nice roomy pockets.  You know for a bit of Kleenex, a stick of gum, a list for head’s that can’t remember anything for more than five minutes, etc. 

The other need for pockets is for more critical stuff.  For instance, during the summer months, when Hub and I go golfing out on the back forty, instead of dragging our golf carts and bags along, we just grab a nine iron for me, a five iron for him, a couple of tees, a couple of balls, and we’re off for a game.  And that’s when everything becomes an inconvenience when I don’t have nice roomy pockets for my tees and an extra ball.  Or a Kleenex to weep into when I so miss the shot I intended. 

But right now we’re sewing pants and although the pants went together swiftly, I just couldn’t get inspired about pocket-making-intricacies.  I know, pockets aren’t that difficult, but each time I make them, especially if I haven’t sewed for a while, I must thoroughly review the process. 

I know that because if I don’t review the pocket-making-process, when my slacks are finished and trimmed of any stray sewing threads, and proudly turned right side out, the pockets will be neatly, soundly, and securely sewed shut.  Oh yes, they will.

So without the patience, or the inclination to relearn pocket making intricacies, I simply slapped those slacks together without pockets.  Then made a comfy wide elastic waistband, and hemmed them up. 

But pants without pockets are just not a good thing.  I pondered the situation, thought about other pants worn by the younger crowd and there I found a solution.  I simply plastered a couple of nice roomy patch pockets lower down on the outside of each leg. 

Hub laughs at me.  At my notions and how they change with the passage of time.  For instance a few years ago, when I was sewing slacks, I minded not being quite embedded in the process.  It was nothing for a project such as that to take four days, maybe even longer.  But no more.  Like I say to Hub, as one becomes elderly, they must find ways to accomplish progress in much shorter laps. 

I don’t have four days to spare pissing around with the construction of a traditionally pocketed pair of slacks.  I have part of a day, and by god, I will get them done in that time, or I won’t be making them.  I don’t have enough time for any long drawn out affairs.  (Especially, since I might have a blog to write!)

Too much of each day is used up trying to get out of bed, get my feet under me, and get in and out of the shower.  And the time I need for cleaning my false teeth, curling my coarser hair that would rather not, plucking strays from my chin, lotioning up my feet…and doing the rest of all the compulsory house chores in slow mo.   

Sewing is a luxury that must be condensed or it won’t be happening. 

So after all that, where am I going with this rant? 

No place, really.  Just want you to know the slacks were finished in two hours, they fit beautifully, they are very comfortable, and the patch pockets will work perfect for lists, tees, golf balls, sunglasses, or bug lotion – as soon as I get the tops of them opened up with my seam ripper!


joared said...

Hey! Sounds to me like you've made a pair of very popular cargo pants -- pockets ... sometimes more than one pocket each side ... even of differing sizes ... on each side of the pant leg. Half of the pocket(s) on front of leg, over the side seam, and other pocket half on the back leg panel.

I've been intending to get a pair of those pants for a few years. Maybe I should just get some material, check my Singer to see if it still "sings" and I remember what to do, and simply make a pair for myself.

Roberta S said...

joared, you make me laugh. That's what Middle Daughter said. "Oh, now you're making the trendy pants."

Guess I did, but I do have to say easier made pockets than those traditional ones that need to fit into the side seams just so.

Actually you might enjoy 'singing' up a pair. Nice thing about sewing is the pattern I use is an old pair that unlike so many other pairs are long enough in the crotch, nicely fitted in the legs, and just right in the hips. Those kind of pants don't come often from the store unless they are stretchy and my skin hates anything with nylon or plastic or elastic or fortrel. So with handsewn 100% cotton, I'm good.

joared said...

You mentioned a problem so many ready-made pants/P.J. bottoms, other pant type items have today -- not long enough in the crotch -- even the so-called more well-made items which really just means they're more expensive. Not many clothes are truly well-made any more, at least in all the ways I learned indicated a quality item.

I can't figure out if the mfg is deliberately skimping on material to save money, or if the pattern has been created by smaller people of another nationality since so many clothes come from other countries.

Using an old pair as a pattern is an excellent idea -- thanks for reminding me of that approach. I've done very little sewing since we moved to Calif. Probably won't get into it any time soon as have to spend my time preparing taxes now.

You may want to make another pair of "cargo" pants and can add a second smaller pocket just for your golf ball(s).

Pauline said...

ha! Well done, you! I used to make most of my own clothes and remember the occasional pocket that ended up inadvertently sewed shut. I should have expected your ending line!

I don't have any old patterns and if I did, they'd be too small size-wise. If I decide to take up sewing again after retirement, I'll have to make my own.

Had to chuckle at your description of shrinking time. I know JUST what you mean. Everything I do takes twice as long and twice as much grunt power!

joared said...

Are you "rippin'" or "so-in'" -- oops, "sewing"?

joared said...

Hope you're well and just taking a rejuvenating break.

joared said...

Are you still rippin' and sewin' or are you into sumthin else now?

Joy Des Jardins said...

Thinking of you Roberta....Happy New Year my friend. ~Joy

joared said...

A year has passed since last you wrote here. Miss you! Wish you or others would let us know how you're doin'.