Chandler Trousers – Could I BE any more in love with them?

I have made a grand total of 3 Chandlers, two trousers and one pair of shorts. The pattern was released in January 2020 by Brittani of Untitled Thoughts, just after I’d ‘locked in’ my Make Nine 2020! I really like the pattern shape with the flat front and the elasticated back. For my personal preference it helps me feel a bit more ‘put together’ than a fully elasticated style. I have gone for the pleated option all three times as it fits my mental image of what I wanted.

Fit Modifications

I made my initial toile out of a lovely pale blue bedsheet donated by my Mum. I knew I’d definitely need to fit these differently as a) they were my first pair or trousers (after Helens Closet Winslows) and b) The pattern instructions say ‘This pattern was drafted for someone standing at 5’8” with a slightly longer torso.’ Being 5’2” with a short torso, there were some clear indications that these may need some alterations.

I sewed up the toile and tried them on, initially I was thrilled with them and thought the fit was OK. If they were ready to wear, they probably would have been bought. However, after a bit of a nose around on Instagram I realised that I could fit them better. I went to Rumana’s (@thelittlepomegranate) story highlights to see what edits she had made. This helped me to identify I needed to move the hip up, which was achieved by taking 3.5cm out of the rise. I also shortened the legs by 2.5cm and, due to personal preference removed about 0.75cm from the side seams and inside seam to give a more dramatic taper (although all bets are off for pair 4). The final edit, which I didn’t understand how to do / that I needed to do until pair 3(!), was to take a wedge out of the side seam of the back pattern piece to ensure the side seams properly lined up at the notches.

The Three Pairs

My first pair was made in an olive green linen which I bought at the Knit and Stitch Show 2020, just before the pandemic struck. I really loved the colour and I knew they’d fit in my wardrobe pretty well. It’s been just over a year since I made them and I’m still in love and reach for them very often. They’re the perfect level of put together comfy and they go with a lot of different things in my wardrobe.

I decided I needed another pair, this time the vision was a ‘stone linen’ pair. However I wanted the linen to have a bit of a pattern, which led to me dithering ever so slightly (I didn’t want a huge stash just prior to my house move). I ended up snapping some stone herringbone linen from Fabric Godmother and it made these trousers super snuggly and soft. Incidentally, also an excellent pair of trousers to go tree climbing in. Photos taken by the lovely Jenni during a Snip Sew Snap challenge run by Like Sew Amazing in June 2021.

From ages 12-16 (maybe even longer) I rarely wore shorts, having been an adventurous kid, playing cricket, climbing trees and getting skinned knees. So, even many years later, I can be a bit funny about shorts. Sewing for myself means that I can feel fairly confident about getting something I’m comfortable in. I also don’t have to go into changing rooms. Having made two pairs of trousers, I knew that I was going to be able to get the fit of the shorts to enhance my shape rather than fight against it.

This was also the pair I fixed the non-matching side seams. To do this I slashed and closed a 3.5cm area of the back side seam. No more mismatched leg seams for me and the feeling of a sewing level up! I have also, in my opinion, started to really nail the distribution of the elastic to secure it across the back.

I’ve decided this is an excellent trouser pattern for adventuring as, as well as climbing trees, they can be used to roll down hills! Them being a cotton-linen blend also means I’m less likely to have the crease marks to show this achievement.

Round Up

In case you couldn’t guess I really like this pattern, I find it a fantastic sew with clear to follow instructions. I did have to do quite a few fit adjustments but I’m not surprised by this being a bit vertically challenged. It’s definitely a great trouser pattern for beginner sewists as you won’t have to do too much fitting due to the elastic at the back. One word of caution is that if you have a very wide hip to waist ratio, you may have to insert a side seam zip.

I have a pair planned for my sister and my friend is going to get a pair of shorts with a turn up for her (extremely) late birthday present. Following that, there’s probably another pair for me in black, maybe even in a lightweight wool!

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