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7 Ways to Customize Pants Pockets for Men

In case you do not know her already, I’d like to introduce you to a talented seamstress and one of the very first supportive sewists that Matt and I digitally ‘met’ when we started our big Thread Theory adventure: Meg of the blog Made by Meg!  Meg has been a test sewer for us several times in the past and has sewn up many inspiring versions of our patterns.  Her blog has been one of my favorites for a number of years now.  Combine all of these elements and you can see how thrilled I am to tell you that Meg has written a guest post for our blog today and has plans to write many more in the future!

Now let me pass you over to her – enjoy the post!

PIc ThumbnailHi I’m Meg! Making clothes is my creative outlet, and I started sewing and knitting in school when I realized I couldn’t wear a thesis or embellish my reports. Along the way, my sewing adventures have led me to knit scarves in the Peruvian Andes and refashion traditional dresses in Mexico City. I love to make things up as I go, mixing patterns and making changes on the fly. Professionally, I’m a researcher who loves presenting data visually in formats that are easy to understand. I hope you’ll follow along as I present inspiration and tutorials from Thread Theory patterns! You can also find me at megmadethis.blogspot.com.

Customize Pants Pockets

In men’s clothing, the details are everything. While womenswear tends to plays with dramatic silhouettes and design elements, menswear is all about classic tailoring with special touches. On the Jedediah and Jutland pants, one place to add that special touch is the back pocket. Below is some inspiration for back pocket embroidery to suit a variety of styles.

1. Abstract

Abstract

Source: Diesel Jeans & Boots, Jeans & Leather

These pockets have a fun, modern look, and are easy to sew!

2. Topstitching

Topstitching

Source: Stronghold & Pronto Denim

Sometimes something as simple as a line of topstitching can create an interesting effect. These pockets play with the unique shape of the pocket and elements such as rivets.

3. Nature Inspired

Nature Inspired

Source: Prima Jeans & Two Random Words

For the outdoorsy guy, I love nature-inspired pockets, especially for a rugged pattern like the Jutland Pants. You can allude to nature with an organic shape like waves, or do what fellow blogger Sophie-Lee did and embroider a landscape.

4. Embroidered Shapes

Embroidered Shapes

Source: Vintage Sergio Valente & Japan X Lee

If you are handy with your sewing machine or have an embroidery function, shapes are really fun. Perfect for the playful guy!

5. Embellishments

Embellishments

Source: Phable Jeans & Vintage Jacket

These subtle embellishments prove once again how small details can enhance a design. On the left, scraps from the selvedge edge have been stitched down to the pocket. On the right, small pieces of leather decorate and strengthen the pocket.

6. Fabric

Fabric

Source: Apliiq Jeans & Pinterest

This technique can be either loud or subtle, depending on the fabrics you choose. While I love the flower look on these jeans, more conservative dressers might appreciate the subtle variation of a similarly-colored fabric with a bit of texture.

7. Special Touches (1)

Special Touches

Source: Pinterest & Kings of Indigo

Sometimes plain and simple pockets are the best. But even then you can have some fun with it. Initials in the corner are a simple way to go. Or, do what denim company Kings of Indigo does and embroider a design inside the pocket where only the wearer can see it.


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A Tale of Two Trousers: The fit and style differences between the Jeds and the Jutlands

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Due to popular demand, here is an in-depth discussion about the differences between our two men’s pants patterns: The Jedediah Pants and the Jutland Pants!  Let’s delve right in:

The Jedediah Pants are a slim fit trouser with several distinctive features: Slash pockets, a back yoke and pointed back pockets.  They are part of our Parkland Collection which features casual clothing suited to slim bodies and daily wear (while strolling through B.C.’s provincial parks!).

The Jutland Pants, on the other hand, are a relaxed fit trouser with these distinctive features: Curved front pockets, shaping back darts and the choice between welt pockets and squared patch pockets.  They are part of our Alpine Collection which includes rugged clothing designs meant to perform purposeful tasks (hiking mountains or working in a mechanic shop!).

These two pants patterns fit differently in every area – they feature different crotch curves, different hip shapes and different leg widths.  A few people have asked me whether they could skip mocking up the Jutland Pants by simply transferring the fit adjustments that they made on the Jedediah Pants pattern to the Jutland Pants pattern.  Since the Jutland Pants were drafted to fit a different body type than the Jedediah Pants, it is very necessary to mock up the Jutland Pants even if you have already sewn the Jedediah Pants.

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The Jedediah Pants feature roomy chino-style hips and very slim legs.  This shape is a modern, slim fit that is trendy and very well suited to the slim, lanky bodies of young men.IMGP1247

The Jedediah Pants pattern includes two variations – the first is a full length pair of trousers and the second is a knee length pair of shorts with rolled cuffs.Edited-3

Where the Jeds are roomy the Jutlands are slim and where the Jeds are slim the Jutlands are roomy (that sounds like a riddle!).  The Jutland Pants feature straight, narrow hips and wide legs for a classic, conservative fit.  The fit of these trousers make them suited to a wider age range and body type than the Jedediah Pants.

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Aside from fit, there are many differences in style between these two patterns.  The Jedediah Pants, as I mentioned earlier, can be made as shorts or pants and they include stylish jeans-style patch pockets (pointed and slightly angled.

The Jutland Pants do not include a shorts variation (though you could easily slash the pattern at you desired length to create shorts!).  There are many interchangeable design features included in the Jutland Pants pattern – you have the option to create welt pockets, big patch pockets, flat cargo pockets, reinforced knees and hems, and even a full lining.
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Now that I’ve discussed all the fit and styling differences between these two patterns, let’s discuss one similarity:  Both the Jedediah and Jutlands Pants are mid-rise pants.  They are not designed to be dress trousers that sit at the natural waist and they are not designed to be low rise pants that require a belt to keep them resting over the hips.  Both pairs of pants will likely sit snugly on the body without a belt (if you choose to style them this way) and will not be prone to exposing underwear!  They are drafted as mid-rise based on my personal preference (I find this rise to be more flattering to men’s proportions than low rise) but I am sure, as we continue to develop more menswear patterns that we will eventually offer a rise and style to suit just about everyone!

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I hope this analysis of the two patterns will help you decide which pattern best suits you or your recipient’s preferences!  Are there any other questions you might have about these two patterns?  I’d lover to answer them!

You can find both of these patterns, along with their body and garment measurements, in our online shop.


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My Uncle’s Flannel-Lined Jutland Pants

Happy Friday everyone!  I have a picture to share with you today of my uncle in the pair of Jutlands that I made for him during our Jutland Sew-Along.

Uncle Gary - edited

I haven’t seen these pants on him in person as he lives a province away but he reports that they are so comfortable that he didn’t even bother bringing his old favorite pants on a trip to their skiing cabin – the Jutlands sufficed!  He reports that the lining is very cozy and is great protection from the mountain-top weather.


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Jutland Pants Sew-Along – the finished product!

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Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!  I’ll be doing a “2014 Reflections and Resolutions” post on Thursday but, in the meantime, I need to sneak in the final project post before the year finishes!  Here are the final photos of the two Jutland Pants that I made for the sew-along.IMGP2821

First up, we have Matt’s Otter Waxed pants that I made using Variation One of the Jutland Pants pattern.  As you might recall, I adjusted this width of the legs slightly for this version to better suit Matt’s style and proportions.  I tapered them from the knee down to the hem.IMGP2822

I really love how the waxed canvas looks!  The wax gives the fabric such body and depth.  Matt has been wearing these pants non-stop and they have worn in to fit him like a second skin already (in a good way – they aren’t wearing out, they are just getting those desirable creases and that comfortable softness that people strive for with jeans).IMGP2823

These photos were taken on the first day that he wore his new pants so you can see that the wax is creasing in odd areas (see the photo below).  The more Matt wears his pants, the more the wax settles so those creases have disappeared.  The wax has made these pants very warm – it offers a level of protection from the wind and a heaviness that Matt finds really comfortable for frosty walks in the forest.  He got them pretty muddy along the hem on his first walk in them but, once the mud dried, it brushed fully off and he was able to wear his pants for Christmas dinner (with a dress shirt they actually looked quite nice!)!IMGP2824

The second pair of Jutlands that I made are for my Uncle, but, since he lives a province away, my dad graciously modeled them for a quick photoshoot.IMGP2861

This pair was made using the design options from Variation 2.  I added removable knee pads, a screw driver pocket (instead of cargo pockets), a gusset and the optional lining.IMGP2867

Below are a few photos to show you how the pants appear with the knee pads inserted and without.  My dad commented that they looked a little low when he first put the pants on but I told him to kneel and, low and behold, they sit exactly where they are needed to protect the knees (I designed them this way since it bothers me when knee and elbow patches are placed where the joint sits before the joint is bent…it makes the patches completely useless!).IMGP2862IMGP2875

Next is a shot of the reinforced hems.  The pants are a bit short for my dad because I shortened the leg to suit my Uncle’s 33″ inseam.IMGP2869

My dad found that the lack of cargo pockets on this pair elevate these pants from single purpose work pants (such as the orange canvas pair that I made for him) to multi-purpose winter pants that are heavy duty for use in his workshop but nice enough to wear around town.  He’s hoping they don’t fit my Uncle so that he can add them to his ever-growing pants drawer!IMGP2870

The only image I got of the screw driver pocket isn’t very clear but it at least shows you the placement of the pocket – within easy reach!  I mentioned to my dad that the pocket is maybe a little too long for most screw-drivers and that I wished I had shortened it.  He said, for his uses, that he really liked the length because he would rather be able to fit any long tool in the pocket than have a pocket that is too short and causes tools to slip out.  He said, matter-of-factly, that he would simply stuff a rag in the bottom of the pocket if he wanted to use it for shorter screwdrivers.  My dad…always thinking creatively :D.IMGP2872
Now that the sew-along is finished, you can find it on our website here.  I’d love to see your finished Jutland Pants!  Did anyone make them as a Christmas gift?  Nicole is collecting photos of your versions and she’ll be doing a compilation post of all of them some time in the New Year.  Enjoy the rest of your holidays!


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In The Wild- A Pair of Jutlands and a Strath

in-the-wild-banner-small

The Jutland Pants Sew-Along begins on Dec. 1st (we’re working on creating the custom pocket pattern pieces today!).  To give you some inspiration as you plan your pants, today I want to feature Duncan Macleod’s Jutlands.

jutlandsdmacleodsmusings

To read all the construction and fitting details about this pair of Jutlands, head to Duncan’s blog: dmacleodsmusings.  Duncan offer’s an inspiring approach to DIY.  On his blog he states:

“I can’t help but do for myself what might easily be done for me.”

Duncan discusses the similarities of sewing and welding and demonstrates the importance of spatial intelligence when creating something 3D from a 2D raw material.

dmacleodsmusings2

I really like Duncan’s choice of contrasting top stitching and the flat felled seams on these Jutlands look very professional.

Next, let me show you an excellent rendition of the Strathcona Henley!

moto-cona

This Strathcona was made by Devon of Miss Make for her brother.  She chose a motorcycle themed fabric and worried a bit that it might be too cutesy.  She had no need to fear as her brother loves the shirt (enough to agree to model!) and I think he suceeds in making it look really chic!  When I read that this was a motorcycle themed Strathcona I had to squiiiint to see the motorcycles – I really like how subtle they are.

Thanks for sharing you finished projects guys!

 


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Thinking about making trousers…

With the Jutland Pants Sew-Along coming up on December 1st, I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about sewing pants.  Next week we will be filming the ‘video diary’ so that it is ready for the sew-along start date.  In the meantime, here are some of the resources I’ve been referring to while brainstorming and researching before we begin to film!

Ginger Jeans sew-along

Have you seen Closet Case File’s latest pattern?  Heather Lou has put epic amounts of work into this pattern and is currently hosting a sew-along on her blog.  I am not usually one for following sew-alongs but this Ginger Jeans Sew-along has got me hooked!  Heather has thought of every single question someone might want answers to as they embark on their first pair of jeans.  She has beautifully photographed her steps (including how to sew the fly!).  I’m glad we haven’t been working on a photographed sew-along because, when it comes to sewing casual pants, Heather’s got your classic sew-along completely and perfectly covered!

kuhl pants

During our sew-along I will be sewing two pairs of pants – one of each variation included in the pattern.  One of these will be put in the mail, once finished, for my Uncle.  He recently visited my parents (around the time of our Jutland Pants release date) and by the time his visit was over, he wanted a pair of pant’s just like my dad’s heavy duty Jutlands (my dad wears them constantly).  My Uncle’s favorite trouser brand is Kuhl and so I’ve decided to include some classic Kuhl details on his pair of Jutlands.  I borrowed a pair of his pants one evening and took some relevant measurements:IMGP2268

As I mentioned in the sew-along announcement post, this pair will include a gusset for ultimate flexibility,  custom pockets (including a screw-driver pocket), and I hope to adjust the fit of the Jutlands a little to match his favorite Kuhl fit.IMGP2267

Speaking of fit, I’ve been planning out some of the alterations I want to show you in our video diary.  My favorite fitting guide in my library is a single page in Winifred Aldrich’s Metric Pattern Cutting for Menswear.  These fitting adjustments are specifically suited to men (which is hard to find in the sewing world!) and they are presented very simply and clearly.IMGP2266

I’ll cover these adjustments in our video as I find it is really helpful to see pattern adjustments in motion rather than photographed or sketched.  Since most pattern adjustments involve slashing and pivoting, I think the dynamic format of video will be perfectly suited to explaining these!
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And last but not least, here’s a little sneak of what our new pup, Luki is up to while I work this afternoon!  He’s trying to dry off after a stormy mid-morning walk by snuggling deeply in his (ever-growing) pile of cozy blankets!  Happy Friday!


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Announcing the Jutland Pants Sew-along

Jutland Sew Along

If you would like some help sewing your Jutland Pants, not to worry – help is on its way!  Join us on the blog starting December 1st for a week of back to back video and photo posts.  This sew-along will be a little different from our normal format.  Instead of posting every few days at what we hope is the pace that you might be sewing, we will be posting a new post once a day for one week.  This way you can refer back to them at whatever pace you desire.  Each post will include a ‘Video Diary’ of my sewing process along with the most important stills from the video posted as photos for you to examine.

Since we already created a thorough step-by-step photographed sew-along that teaches you how to sew the Jedediah Pants, this new sew-along will instead assume a base level of knowledge (never fear, if you don’t have that pants sewing knowledge, simply refer to the Jedediah Pants sew-along as the main construction process for both pants is very similar).  The Jutland Pants sew-along will delve beyond the basic instructions and will focus on making the pattern your own.  We’ll will discuss fitting your pants, we will take a look at how to add a gusset to this pattern (perfect for rock-climbing and other agility based activities), we will add removable knee pads to our pants, we’ll create custom pockets suited to our needs, and we will wax our pants to create a water resistant pair of canvas trousers.

Are there any other elements you would like to see included in this sew-along?  Send in your requests and we will get working on them!


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New Pattern: Meet the Jutland Pants!

Jutlands-1

I’ve been dropping many hints but haven’t given you a specific date – well the day is here!  We have a new pattern to show you!

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Meet the Jutland Pants.  These pants are the alter-ego of our Jedediah Pants.  They are relaxed, straight legged pants with curved front pockets and back darts.  They include all sorts of beautiful, high end finishing techniques, just like the techniques you’ve learned when sewing the Jedediah Pants!

Jutlands-2

These pants feature flat fell seams, french seamed front pockets, a bound waistband, and a practical front fly.

pocket topstitching

They are designed to be extremely rugged pants that can be made to suit all sorts of demanding uses – be it climbing mountains or working on a construction site.

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This pattern includes two variations with all sorts of mix and matching possibilities.

close up of welts 2

Variation 1 features single welt back pockets (complete with extremely thorough illustrated instructions and a photographed tutorial that is up on our website!).  This variation would look great as every-day trousers.

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The welt pockets make them a touch dressy, while the curved front pockets are similar to those of familiar jeans.

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Variation 2 includes easy patch pockets, reinforced knees, reinforced hems, and slim cargo pockets.

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These design details, paired with purpose driven material choices (think heavy cotton canvas for construction pants or waterproof ripstop for hiking pants) could be used to create a wardrobe full of pants catered towards your lifestyle.  Just pick the pocket and reinforcement elements that are suited to your needs to create all manner of pant styles!

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A separate PDF file includes lining pieces that can be used for either variation.  Line these pants with cozy flannel or breathable mesh depending on your intended pants use.  If you don’t want to line your pants, don’t print the Lining file and trees will be saved!  We’ve also split the Variation design elements into separate files so you can print these pants using as little paper as possible (thanks for the great suggestion test sewers!).

For those of you just about to head into summer, these pants are REALLY easy to make into shorts.  Because they aren’t very tapered, just slice the pattern at your desired hem length – wherever that may be along the straight leg (note that our instructions don’t include this as a variation…but trust me, it’s easy!  Here are some Jutland Shorts that I made for Matt last summer:

shorts beach scene

As with our recent Finlayson Sweater pattern, the Jutland Pants are available as a PDF pattern right now which includes a Print at Home file as well as a Print Shop file.  We’ll be offering this as a tissue pattern in the future but plan to release several of our upcoming patterns as PDFs first before sending them to the printer all at once.  If you plan to buy the tissue pattern in the future but can’t wait to get started on the Jutland Pants, no problem!  When we release the tissue pattern in the future, you will have one week to email us (info@threadtheory.ca) with your PDF order number and will will give you a special discount code for the tissue pattern so that you will end up receiving the PDF for free!

Ready to get sewing pants?  Head on over to our online shop to receive the Jutland Pattern 15% off until Nov. 5th!