The other day a very sweet local sewing friend came over to visit, eat scones, and hold babies. And instead of spending that time doing something useful, like packing away the hand-me downs I sorted and spread all over the dining room table last week, I went down to the sewing room and finished off my in-progress Jalie Clara leggings.*

I bought this fabric back in September, as a treat for myself for having to take time away from being at the hospital to sort out some government paperwork with regards to my parental leave (it helps that the Fabricland is right next door to the Service Canada office). It’s a stretchy fleece with a smooth side printed like bits of denim, and they were crying out to be some kind of jegging. Perhaps a more literal jegging might have been better, but I knew that wasn’t going to happen with my situation this fall, so instead I opted for the Jalie Clara leggings, with the seamless front that’s so good for showing off prints. I actually managed to trace off the pattern, cut them out, and sew up the main pieces back in November when my bestie came to visit for a few days, but when I went to try them on, I had a rude awakening.

I’ll blame my oversight on my sleep deprived state, but I hadn’t actually managed to compare the stretch of my fleece with the stretch of the pattern. And while there is almost enough widthwise stretch (enough, given that I was making a larger size anyway), the fleece has almost no lengthwise stretch. Oops. Even though I traced the no-yoke version of Clara (for simplicity) and added my usual height in the back, and Clara is meant to be high waisted, it was decidedly low rise. (I also added a whack of length to the leg and angled the back crotch seam in a bit more. These are my usual Jalie pants adjustments.)

Fortunately, this could be fixed by adding a yoke at the top, but at the time I was stymied. So today I cut a new yoke, added it on (should’ve made it wider, perhaps) and then added a nice wide exposed waistband elastic on top of that. The result sits more or less where I wanted it, which is high. Really high. Grandpa high. A little more height in the back wouldn’t have hurt, but it will do.

I’m not convinced it looks good, but it feels pretty good. And not like I need to hike them up every five seconds like every other pair of pants I currently can fit.

It’s a pretty modest success, but they’re done, with a few months of wear left before the weather gets too warm, and I’m pretty excited to have something other than the two pairs of jeans and assortment of ratty leggings I’ve been living in.

*after spending an hour or so digging out the ironing board and machines, and then having to find a chair.



Filed under Sewing

6 responses to “Clara-fication

  1. Katherine

    These are great! So glad you got a bit of sewing time in….the best way to spend your time if somebody will hold your babies!
    I thought I would never ever wear high waist leggings, but I just made the greenstyle tempo tights with the ultrahigh waistband and I love that I don’t need to hike them up.

  2. Woohoo for sewing friends and sewing time. And I hear you on the high waist. My approach was far less creative than yours, this week. I bought a new pair of Hue denim leggings (my go to for years). The super high waist version. To be even less environmentally friendly, I bought online from the Bay (there are 2 within walking distance of me) and had them delivered. I just couldn’t bear the thought of going out.

    • I’m struggling with the high waist, I really don’t like how it looks on me. But then I don’t really like how any pants look on me right now, and at least they stay up? I dunno. I haven’t left the house in several days, I really need to make myself do something tomorrow. 😅

  3. Ugh. Jeans that work their way down below the belly are THE WORST. Maybe I should be looking into a higher waist jean for myself, but I just have flashbacks to the early-mid 90’s and those gawdawful Lawman’s I used to wear for showing horses…*shudder*

    Also, don’t beat yourself up about doing something relaxing instead of working. You’re basically a milk machine that changes diapers right now, no one blames you for wanting to do something to help relax. 🙂 You gotta take care of yourself too, so no guilt allowed!

    • Man, the teenagers are wearing their jeans so high! I’m really struggling. I used to wear mine really low, but as my belly has grown that’s not such a flattering look. But anything midrise I’ve tried just wriggles down to the “low rise” position. I’m honestly not fond of the super-high-rise but I’m not sure there’s another option. I need to do some RTW trying on, I think. 😅

  4. Pamela A. OConnor

    An amazing achievement given your multitudinous commitments. You look fantastic, too. It has been so joyful to follow the growth of Tristan and River these months, but also a thrill to see you back sewing a bit again. Brava!

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