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Underlining the Valencia Pants

Underlining the Valencia Pants

When you love a fabric, but it's not quite the right weight for the piece that you want to make, what do you do? This is what happened to me recently. I fell in love with this printed handkerchief linen fabric and couldn't get past the idea of making pants. But the fabric was too sheer for a bottom weight.

In my Craftsy class, Underneath It All, one of the lessons is all about using underlinings to change the character of a fabric to help make it useful for its unintended purpose. I show examples of underlinings such as cotton batiste, muslin, China silk, silk organza, cotton flannel and lightweight linen. Not only did I not have the right color of any of these fabrics on hand to work with the semi-sheer soft pink linen, but most of these seemed like they would be too hot for an easy-breezy summer pant.

A new fashion trend is using mesh fabrics for double-layer tanks and tops and for edges and trims. We had just gotten a couple of mesh fabrics into our inventory; one a pinkish nude color, the other a soft aqua. I liked the idea of an open, airy fabric as an underlining with no bulk and no color change through the outer fabric. I paired our Ballet Pink Mesh with the Pink Cherry Blossom Linen – a perfect combination!

Basically, I made two pairs of Valencia Pants, using the shorter View B. I cut the mesh pair 1" shorter than the finished length of the linen pants and 3-thread serge-finished the bottom edge in lieu of a turned hem. I hemmed the linen pants in the traditional method.

Before attaching the waistband, I machine basted the mesh pants to the linen pants at the waist. Then I installed the waistband, connecting the two pants and finishing the pants "as one". The mesh underlining had another unexpected benefit. The handkerchief linen does not wrinkle as much as a linen normally does. I did discover that I need to press the linen separately to get better results, so I pull the mesh pants out of the pants in order to press the linen portion more easily.

​The digital linen comes in such a beautiful array of prints. Whether you prefer a pastel look or a bold graphic print, we have many linens that would make beautiful Valencia Pants. However, I know many people don't sew with linen because of the wrinkle factor, so if you fall under that group, why not try making the Valencia Pants using a crepe fabric? Not only do we have some fabulous prints, but they drape of crepe would be beautiful in this pant style.

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Linda Lee + Craftsy

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