This lemon fabric was what inspired me to make a Mediterranean capsule. Funny really, as the fabric really doesn’t go with any of the other pieces! But I just felt transported to a beautiful Greek island when I looked at this fabric and decided, if I couldn’t go to a nice warm beach with blue sea and golden sand, then I would have to bring it to me!

This fabric is a slightly stretchy, rather heavy cotton and I had no idea what I wanted to make from it. A dress or skirt from this would be really quite formal as the fabric is quite stiff and I just couldn’t see myself wearing a top out of this either. Therefore I started leaning towards shorts, which I am always wary of, as I find ready to wear are never the most flattering on me as they just don’t fit me right (they never grade across three sizes for some reason!). I did a lot of Instagram stalking and in the end, decided to go with a tried and tested pattern for me – the Megan Nielsen Flint pants. Now when I say tried and tested, I have made this pattern twice as cropped trousers with the tucks in the front, but I thought this would be enough to know that the pattern fit me. Ha. If only I knew!

So I started with the pattern pieces which I have ready traced, they are graded from a smaller waist to wider hips (I cannot for the life of me remember what sizes but it was definitely across three according to the pattern measurements which I found to be very accurate). I decided that I didn’t want the tucks in the front of the shorts as in a heavy fabric I thought they could be too much. Luckily, on the Megan Nielsen website, they have a tutorial on how to remove the tucks – here’s the link. So I followed this to remove the tucks and then decided on the rough length I wanted. I also split the pocket lining pieces so that I could use something more lightweight on the inside but have the part that is showing still in the lemon fabric.

The fabric cut out really easily (got to love cotton), I also had a lot of fabric left – thinking some nice trousers at some point maybe?

The sewing was easy enough and I decided to add piping to the pocket edge and along the waistband in lemon yellow fabric. I didn’t bother with a mock-up of this just because I have made the two longer pairs before and didn’t feel the need. Therefore once I had the everything together bar the waistband I did the first fitting. They were looking a little big in the crotch but nothing crazy. so I just took in around 3 cm along the whole crotch seem then added the waistband. Eugh. They were huge, what had I done wrong?! I’m still not entirely sure what the cause of this was, but I think it was a mix of two things. One being that during the making process, I had accidentally stretched out the fabric, and two being that I did something wrong during the pattern editing of removing the tucks. Either way, I was too far in to back out now so I removed the waistband (and extra piping I had added) and took out a good 5cm each at the front and back of the crotch seam (I tried to keep the depth of the crotch curve the same). This seemed to give a better fit so I added the waistband back on. And then found another issue. The back was coming up really high compared to the front. This was very odd as I had no idea how this might have occurred, so I checked my trousers made from this pattern and funnily enough, they have the same thing. I have just never noticed before, probably because the fabric is much more drapey and as trousers, it doesn’t stick out due to proportions. However, with these ones, I decided that it was to big an issue so I removed the waistband, again, and took off around an inch from the back round to level where the pockets start.

After this correction, I re-attached the waistband (and actually left it there this time) then added some buttons. I had my first go at doing covered buttons and whilst these look good I think next time, I will use a kit next time to make them more sturdy. Finally, I hand-stitched the hem at, what I thought, was the best length for me. And then I was finally done!!

Shorts in the wild!

What do you think? Please excuse the styling, I was out on a rather lovely walk :). I really rather like them but am really struggling to find a top to go with them. I think that will have to go on next summer’s to sew list because I am out of sun.

Changes I made

  • Removed the tucks at the front following the instructions by Megan Nielsen (badly)
  • lowered the back by around an inch to make them sit a little flatter and not crinkle at my back.
  • Took in the crotch seam by about 8cm (more on the front) to give a less baggy fit.
  • Added piping to the pocket and waistband seams (very proud first for me!)
  • Cut the pocket piece in two so that the visible part would be lemmony but the rest not too bulky.
Front of the Lemon Shorts
Some covered buttons!

Good things

  • Still love the style
  • Piping – I really enjoyed adding the extra bit of detail to this make and feel it really does make a difference. I will be adding this to more projects in the future and maybe even making my own!
  • Instructions- the instructions for these trousers are amazing. I didn’t follow them this time as I have made them twice already but I really found them easy to work with when I first made this pattern.
  • Extra hacks (for free) – as well as this hack of removing the tucks there is also a way to make them into dungarees? I think I know what next summer may bring! There are also sew-alongs to help with parts of the pattern too.

Not so good things

  • Something went wrong with the fit – I don’t quite know how they were so much too big, maybe fabric, maybe dodgy pattern hacking?
  • The wonky backline- again not entirely sure how I managed it but for any future versions of the Megan Nielsen Flint pants I will be lowering the back around an inch.
Back view of shorts

Recommendations for making the Megan Nielsen Flint pants

  • Lower the back waistline (or at least check if you might need to before you add the waistband and hand stitch the inside down!)
  • Maybe not for stretchy fabrics, maybe others will succeed but for me stretchy fabric created problems.
  • Concentrate really hard if you take out the darts – I’m sure this introduced fit problems for me so just watch out.

Overall marks:Fit-6/10 Style-9/10 Instructions-8/10 Ease- 7/10 Finished garment- 7/10

Overall, I think that this is a brilliant pattern and think it would be great first trouser project just maybe make better fabric choices than me! Next week I will be having a look at how my summer sewing went and laying out what I want to make this colder season.

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