Jess’ brussels washer Rose shorts

Another day, another Rose post! We continue to celebrate the versatility of the Rose pattern with Jess’ shorts. This pair is made from Brussels Washer Yarn Dye by Robert Kaufman. This is a lovely blend of 55% linen / 45% rayon that is easy to care for (machine wash & dry!) and easy to sew.

While this particular color is sadly no longer available, there are still some gorgeous options in the yarn dyes, as well as the [non yarn-dyed] Brussels Washer collection.


Jess chose to use the inverted pleats on this pair. I’ve included a bunch of different pleating and gathering alternatives in the Rose pattern, and I recommend trying different ones when you make yours! I went into some more detail about gathers vs. pleats in this post.

A few reliable sources for Brussels Washer:
Fancy Tiger Crafts: Regular / Yarn Dyes
Imagine Gnats
Ewe Fibers
Stonemountain & Daughter

Find resources, inspiration, and everything Rose-related on the Rose Page. Just need the pattern? Find it in my shop!

Have you made a pair (or three…) of your own Rose pants or shorts? Share them and get inspired at #mbrrose!

Rose pants in viscose-linen

viscose-linen rose pants

Rose pants can be made out of a pretty wide variety of fabrics for different looks and textures! Here we have a couple of pairs sewn from viscose-linen. This fabric has been VERY HOT on the Apparel Sewing Internet for the past year, so both Jess and I wanted to try it out for Rose pants, being both super comfortable, apparel-appropriate, and easy to find both at fabric shops and online. I also used it to sew the yellow Emerald dress sample for Making Magazine.

viscose-linen rose pants

Jess used the “rust” color, and I used “caramel.”

Rose pants in viscose linen

This fabric is easy to care for (machine wash and dry) and incredibly comfortable. It has an elegant drape too, but due to the slubby texture, it’s not difficult to manage while sewing, the way some slippery rayons can be. (note that the terms “viscose” and “rayon” mean the same thing)

Sewing Rose (or any garment, for that matter) out of this fabric does require some adjustments we wanted to tell you about. It has more than the usual amount of stretch for a woven fabric, so it has a tendency to “grow” while you sew it. For both of us, it stretched out quite a bit while sewing, especially along the curved crotch seams (basically, be careful with any curved or bias-cut seams), so when we were finished the pants felt at least a size too big.

viscose-linen rose pants

As a result, Jess (who has a 36.5″ hip and made a size S) narrowed leg at inseam, shortened rise, and reduced width at center back by taking in the top section of the back crotch seam. On my pair (I have a 41″ hip and made a size L), I took in in 1″ along both side seams from back pant pieces and waistband (so 2″ total), reduced back crotch curve by 1″ by taking in the back inseam at the crotch and inner thigh. I’m pretty sure I would also have taken up the hem if I were not so tall (I’m 5’8″).

I think the big question left unanswered yet is “should you go down a size in this fabric?” and I’m REALLY tempted to say yes, especially if you are between sizes. However, since this is — as of this writing — still untested, if you decide to do so, I must remind you to proceed with caution.

For those who would prefer to stay on the safe side and cut your fabric out according to your size, use the adjustments you made to your muslin and be prepared to make some tweaks. We also highly recommend in all cases that you baste all seams (except pockets) and adjust fit as you go — there are instructions for checking fit throughout the pattern to remind you to do this — this is always immensely helpful whenever using a new-to-you fabric.

With fabrics that have so much give, it’s always a good idea to hold off on hemming right away as well. Once you’ve done everything but hem, hang them up for a day or two, then try them on once more and sew your hem.

viscose-linen rose pants
viscose-linen rose pants

You may be left wondering: why the heck would I use this fabric if it may requires so much tweaking?? The answer is because these pants are so freaking comfortable you can sleep in them. This fabric is just the dreamiest thing to wear, and any hateful thoughts I may have mentally pointed in its direction when adjusting the fit of my pair have since magically disappeared. Sometimes, the problem solving involved with sewing garments is justified by the end result. I feel like a million bucks in these pants.

Rose pants - made by rae

One other note about this fabric. While it is widely available at many of our favorite apparel fabric shops, most shops use different names to identify it (a personal pet peeve, but moving on…). If you’re a shop that carries this fabric, feel free to leave a comment with a link to your listing so we can add you to this list:

Ewe Fibers – Viscose-linen
Blackbird fabrics – Viscose-linen noil (note: NOT the viscose-linen slub!!!)
Stonemountain and Daughter – Mora Slub
Shop La Mercerie – Avery Slub linen blend
Sewing Studio – Grace Viscose & Linen

I hope this post has been informative and helpful. If you have sewn something with this fabric or try it for Rose, be sure to weigh in with your thoughts so we can hear what you think!

The Rose pattern is available in my shop. Rose pattern information and yardage can be found on our Rose page.

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Jess’ silk noil Rose + Gemma set

silk noil Rose and Gemma set

Hi all! Jess here, sharing a Rose Pants + Gemma Tank combo that I’m loving. The fabric I used is silk noil in teal blue that we got from Ewe Fibers here. This silk is easy to care for (machine wash and dry!), easy to sew, and incredibly soft and comfy.

I’ve made three versions of Rose now: one in each length, and each in a different fabric. Throughout this process, I’ve learned a ton of lessons, and this particular Gemma/Rose combo presented the biggest challenges, but possibly the most rewarding results!

silk noil Rose and Gemma set
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When I cut out these pants, I had just finished making a super-drapy viscose/linen pair that required a lot of width reduction and rise adjustment. I mistakenly assumed that the same adjustments would be necessary for this silk noil, so I preemptively took 1/2″ off the width at the hip and took in the back inseam by about a 1/2″ to narrow the leg and reduce the rise. This was *not a good idea*! When I basted the seams and tried the pants on before adding the waistband, the rise was too low in the back, and there was not enough ease at the hip. 

Thankfully, I was sewing at the studio with Rae, and she helped me carve out the back rise seam to make a little more room in the seat. Then I reduced the side seam allowances, which bought me a bit of ease in the hip. My next mistake was to attach the waistband without basting first. I could barely pull them on over my hips! So again, I had to undo some seams and reduce the waistband seam allowances. I was surprised that adding the waistband made such a difference, but I believe that the interfaced front waistband stabilized the fabric and removed the little bit of ease I had actually retained.

Lessons Learned:

1. Don’t make adjustments until you’ve tried on the garment! I have a good set of working pattern pieces because I made a muslin out of a stable, non-stretchy cotton. I should have trusted those pattern pieces and used them without any changes when I tried a new fabric.

2. Only make one change at a time, and try on between adjustments. I didn’t make one change at a time, which resulted in not knowing which alterations made a difference.

3. Baste baste baste! Even though it feels like more sewing, if you use a basting stitch to sew all your initial seams, it’s super easy to try something on, make quick changes, and pull out the basting threads. Once you have a good fit, you can use a regular stitch and finish your seams with full confidence that you won’t have to take all those tedious stitches out later.

silk noil Rose and Gemma set

Now for the Gemma top! I’m probably Gemma’s biggest fan. I have a closet full of them, and I wear them all year around. Now that I’ve finally discovered high-waisted pants and shorts, one of my favorite modifications is to crop Gemma (here’s a tutorial), which I did here. Since I’ve made a thousand of these tanks, I didn’t try it on before I hemmed it. And guess what? *It was a bad idea*! It looked great with jeans, but the whole idea was to wear this tank with the matching Rose Pants, and the hem was just too low to look good.

So, another lesson learned: 

If you’re going to make coordinating garments, try them on with each other before finishing them. In this case, moving the hem up an inch made this combination actually wearable. And now I have a sweet new outfit! 

silk noil Rose and Gemma set

Ready to make your own combo like mine? Grab the patterns in the shop:
Rose Pants
Gemma Tank

And you can always get some inspiration on Instagram with these handy tags: #mbrrose / #gemmatank / #madebyrae

Rose inspiration

I really love the wide leg, high-waisted pant trend. Today I’m sharing some of the images that inspired me when designing the Rose sewing pattern. Not all of these are exact-matches for Rose’s design; in fact you’ll probably notice that very few of them are, because I often find the colors, silhouettes, lengths, fabrics, prints, and outfit styling more inspiring than the actual garment details. I’ll try to share some of my thoughts about these (I’ve numbered them to make them easier to reference), but in the end, the way an image hits one person is always a bit different than the way it it hits someone else. Here’s hoping you’ll find some sewing inspiration here as well!

Rose inspiration collage

I’m going to start with my most colorful set of images, since I’m a bold-colors kind of gal. Mara Hoffman’s high-waisted pant designs (1,3,7) have certainly been a huge inspiration to me. Imagining striped and solid colored fabrics for Rose (and how about a solid, matching top as well?) was a huge source of inspiration. I also someday hope to exactly copy those pink striped pants and complete the look with a white button-down and sweet hat (2). I love the combination of a striped knit top paired with floral pants (5), and that gauzy fabric in the yellow pleated pants looks perfectly dreamy (4). Who else wants to figure out how to add a center front zipper like that electric yellow pair with me (8)?

Now for some more neutral looks…

Several of the high-waisted pant and shorts images in this post have waist-ties (10, 13, 16), which is something I plan to explore soon — I currently have another Rose cut out and sitting next to me on the table along with a waist-tie…stay tuned. The dressy looks here are also great (12, 15); that all-black (navy?) outfit (15) is fantastic with the sleeveless turtleneck and some neutral accessories. I’m really drawn to rust (11, 14) and golden brown (9) fabrics; perhaps a linen would create those looks. And the lighter fabrics (10, 13, 16) are perfect for warm weather. The long white pants in (16) with that ruffled yellow top (Ogden cami? or Gemma with ruffle?) is such a summery look.

In this collage, more solid-color outfits that really shine (18, 19, 22), and a couple that incorporate denim or chambray fabrics into the look (23, 24) for a more casual vibe. The patterned Ace and Jig fabric (17) and vertical stripes (20) are fairly neutral yet fun. That cinnamon pair (21) really reminds me of the long brown Rose pants I wear all the time!

Finally, I want to draw your attention to the various lengths. Floor-skimming (20, 21) can be beautiful for a dressier or more dramatic style. If you’re sewing a cropped version of Rose, consider how different the cropped lengths are in the bottom right two images (22 and 25). 22 is mid-shin, while 25 lands right at the ankle; both are fantastic. I want to encourage you to play around with length — everyone’s proportions are unique, so the “perfect length” is really up to you!

The Rose pants and shorts sewing pattern is available now in my shop!

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Rose Pants Tester Roundup, vol. 2

Today we have the second installment of our tester photos to provide you with even more inspiration for sewing my newest pattern, Rose! (See vol. 1 here.)

Jessica (@kunklebaby, above) has come up with tons of ways to wear her Rose pants, and she’s one of the first to have made shorts! Note that we asked testers to first make either the long or cropped pants rather than shorts so we could evaluate the length, which is why you don’t see as many shorts pics in the roundups.

Jenny (@thewardrobearchitect, below), made this beautiful cropped pair first in an off-white tencel twill, then dyed them navy:

Nancy (@milkpillowblog) has made multiple versions in both prints and solids. Love how she’s paired hers with so many great handmade tops, too!

Mei made contrast pockets for all of the pairs she made — check out her pocket closeups in her feed: @mei.sews. Her versions look great with her Sointu tee and Ogden cami (also both made by Mei)!!

Kten (@jinxandgunner) made her cropped test pair out of chambray; she has plans to sew up more out of some drapey linens and rayons to prepare for summer.

These printed Essex linen [Forage Essex by Anna Graham] cropped pants from Niku are just making me so happy! Love how she’s styled these in so many fun ways (and that pair with red polka dots, upper right!!!).

Meredith (@brooklyncrafty) is a garment sewing instructor and had a lot of fun playing around with her Rose muslins. I’m always super excited when testers play around with fit — Meredith adjusted rise and played around with the seams and waistband width — because it gives us great info that we can share with those of you who have adjustment questions.

Kristine @kristinesews made these gorgeous flowy rayon Rose pants for her test version — love how she first made these in the long length, then decided to crop them!

Jessamy (@jessamyb) made these pretty blue Rose pants out of a viscose twill. Jessamy also made shorts and took photos with Jacqui — check them out on the Ewe Fibers blog! The Rose pants video they made together is completely awesome — check it out if you’re interested in a great review of the pattern features and to see their versions in action!

I hope you’ve enjoyed our tester roundups! We are so grateful to these awesome testers for the feedback and photos — they’re essential to the pattern making process!

Ready to make your own Rose Pants? Find the pattern in my shop!

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Rose Pants Tester Roundup, vol. 1

We launched our newest pattern, Rose, last week, so I wanted to share some great tester versions of Rose with you. One of the things I think is so valuable about sharing tester photos is that it’s helpful to see the pattern sewn up in a variety of different fabrics, on a variety of different people.

Testing a new pattern usually takes us about a month, and is absolutely essential to fine-tuning the fit and making a pattern better. We look for trends from our testers and use their feedback both to adjust the pattern pieces, and improve the instructions. For Rose, we had about 20 testers, so we’ll share pics in two posts since there are so many!

Jacqui stands in the center of the photos, wearing her navy Rose pants and Ursa sweater. She looks down at the floor.

Jacqui @jacquelinecieslak made her Rose Pants out of Brussels Washer Linen, and paired them her very own just-launched sweater design, Ursa. We *love* this combo!! You can find Ursa, which features bust darts and a gorgeous brioche detail, in Jaqui’s Ravelry shop, along with Ursa Minor, which is designed without brioche for beginner knitters.

Leilani (below) made three pairs in quick succession. Check out all of her posts here, here, and here. I really like how the reddish-pink pair goes so well with her handmade pink Adrienne blouse (those sleeves!), but all of her handmade outfits are stunning.

Mary takes her cotton gauze Rose Pants on a beach vacation and to the market. The gauze fabric makes them extra comfy!

My friend Meg made this amazing pair with a navy blue linen-viscose slub.

Meg just left on a trip to Scandinavia and packed 10 pieces of clothing for 10 days and guess what? Her Rose pants made the cut! Pretty high praise!

Kim’s grey cotton pair looks like it’s going to be super versatile!

Stephanie went all dancing queen in her tester pair. She had a little fun with a pocket contrast too!

Sierra’s two pairs show off how versatile this pattern is. She took the soft and cozy viscose twill pair to the beach, and wears the cotton twill pair to work!

And I love how Sierra styled the navy ones with a boxy cropped top — what a great outfit combo.

Andrea tested Rose in a gorgeous navy linen. Those pleats look extra sharp in linen, I think!

Allison posted about her process and listed all the ways she made these pants fit her so beautifully in this post: @alleedew_sews.

Katte’s (@kattegeneta) cropped purple pants are absolutely beautiful. These will be great for spring and summer weather!

A huge thank you to this group of testers for their awesome feedback and for allowing us to repost their photos! Check out Tester Roundup, Vol. 2 HERE!

Inspired to sew your own Rose pants? The pattern is available in my shop!

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Rose is here!

Please welcome my newest pattern, Rose! This versatile pants and shorts pattern is designed for woven fabrics and features slash pockets and a pleated or gathered front. The front waist is flat with pleats or gathers while the back waist is elasticized for a super comfortable fit. Choose from three lengths: long, cropped, or shorts.

Buy Rose Now

Size Range
Rose is our first pattern to be available in 11 sizes: xxs-xl & plus sizes 1-5, for hip measurements 34″-59″ [88-150 cm]. We recommend selecting your size using your hip measurement. Size charts can be found in the shop or on the Rose page.

Rose sewing pattern - long pants

Three length options
Rose comes with cutting lines for three different lengths: shorts, cropped pants and long pants. The shorts have a 4″ [10cm] inseam, the cropped pants have a 23.5″ [60 cm] inseam, and the long pants have a 28″ [71 cm] inseam; measure a pair of your favorite shorts or pants so you can compare and adjust the pattern if necessary! All three lengths are designed with at least a 2″ wide hem allowance for easy length adjustment, and I’ve also included clear instructions on how to adjust the length of the pattern, because every body is different.

Rose sewing pattern / made by rae

Pockets
Built-in slash pockets are secured at the waist and side seam, and they’re big enough to hold a few essentials — phone, keys, change purse.

Pleats or Gathers
The pattern includes several options and alternatives for making the front pleated in a number of different ways, or even gathered. Check out this post for a closer look at some of those options.

Rose sewing pattern - shorts

Back elastic waistband
Rose has a double elastic channel in the back for a super comfortable (and adjustable!) fit. You can read more about the elastic I like to use for Rose and get more details on this pattern feature in my Rose Waistband Elastic options post.

Rose pants - back view

Print-at-home and copyshop files included
Rose is currently available as a digital sewing pattern in my shop. Your download link will include print-at-home pattern pieces as well as copy shop files (in both A0 and US formats), just like the rest of my women’s digital patterns.

Yardage and Materials
I’ve put together a Rose Page where you can find all of the blog posts and resources related to this pattern, plus all the charts for sizes, finished measurements, and yardage.

Buy Rose Now

Share your photos!
I’d love to see your Rose pants and shorts! Remember to tag me (@madebyrae) so I can see what you’ve made with this pattern, and use these hashtags so we can find your pics:
#mbrrose | #madebyrae | #raemademedoit

We also have a Made by Rae group on Facebook, so if you’d like to be a part of the sewing community and discussions there, please request to join!

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Rose pattern feature: gathers vs. pleats

The Rose sewing pattern is now available!

BUY ROSE NOW

One of my goals when designing a pattern is to keep it simple so that it’s easy to adapt. For Rose, I wanted to make sure it was easy to play around with the pleats, use gathering instead of pleating, or even go up or down a size in the waistband if necessary, which you can do precisely because of the extra width at the top of the front pant pieces. I personally think the pleats add a lovely detail to the pattern, but I made this pair of Rose cropped pants with gathers at the waist instead of pleats, and I really love how they look too!

While I was sewing this pair, I tested out a number of the other front options we’ve included in the pattern so you could see how they look on the same pair of pants.

In addition to gathers, the four main pleats can be adjusted to face inward:


The pleats can be combined into one pleat:

And finally, the pleats can be inverted (either all four, or the combined two, as shown here):

For this pair, I ended up preferring the gathers, so that’s what I finally landed on. I like how the gathered option has a bit of a “Cleo” feel to it, with the gathers, flat waistband, and high waist.

I hope you’ll enjoy playing around with these options on your Rose pants and shorts — I think they’re all really fun! If you’re ready to give it a try, pick up your Rose pattern HERE!

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Rose pattern feature: waistband elastic options

Let’s zoom in on one of my favorite features of the Rose pattern: the waistband. Rose features a flat waistband in front, and elastic in back.

The waistband is constructed similarly to my Cleo skirt pattern, except that I designed it with two elastic channels rather than one — each taking a piece of 3/4″ (19 mm) wide elastic — to help create a wider waistband than Cleo. During testing, some of our pattern testers mentioned that they would love the option to just use a single piece of 1.5″ (38 mm) wide elastic, which is more commonly used for wide elastic waistbands, so we added some info to the pattern so that you can use wider elastic if you’d like as well.

Is two pieces of elastic better, or one?

The answer is: they’re both great options. I’ve written the pattern default as 3/4″ (19 mm) wide elastic, but included notes to help you adapt it for 1.5″(38 mm) wide. To give you a comparison, here’s a look at each elastic option (you’ll notice that it’s actually pretty difficult to tell by appearance which is which), along with some pros and cons!

Let’s start with my favorite, the double channel:

PROS (double channel)

  • Conforms to waist shape more easily — this is nice if you have more of an hourglass figure, which I personally think is a bit more comfortable
  • Doesn’t need to be stretched-and-stitched down the center – this can be a bit more difficult for beginners
  • narrower elastic costs less per yard

CONS (double channel)

  • 3/4″ (19 mm) wide elastic may be harder to find
  • Requires threading two pieces of elastic rather than one
  • you’ll need to buy more elastic (2 lengths rather than one)

rose pants / fanciful fabric

Rose pants / back view / made by Rae sewing patterns

Now for the single channel:

Rose shorts / made by Rae

These gold Rose shorts feature a single piece of 1.5″ (38 mm) wide elastic rather than the double channel, but it’s stitched down the middle so it looks like a double channel (it’s not!).

PROS (single channel)

  • 1.5″ (38 mm) wide elastic may be easier to find (?)
  • only have to thread one piece of elastic
  • you only need to buy half as much elastic as the double channel

CONS (single channel)

  • may not be as comfortable or conform to waist curves as easily
  • may require stretch-and-stitching down the center to prevent it from rolling
  • wider elastic costs more

Again, I’m not sure all of the “cons” are really “cons”…this may just really depend on your personal preference and how easily you can find each kind of elastic. Many of our testers said they loved how comfortable the double channel is despite initial misgivings over having to thread elastic through two channels rather than one. I’m happy to say the pattern now has the flexibility (get it?? eh? eh?) to include both!

Elastic source recommendations

For all garment elastic, I highly recommend Fashion Sewing Supply elastic. It’s super soft and stretchy — the most comfortable waistband elastic you will ever find. They carry both 3/4″ (19 mm) and 1.5″ (38 cm) wide elastic, as well as a number of other widths. This is my go-to shop for waistband elastic and garment interfacings. Not an ad, I just love this elastic.

For 1.5″ (38 mm) wide elastic, my friend Meg of Sew Liberated also recommends Dritz Soft Waistband elastic. Full disclosure: I haven’t used it. I used this elastic for the gold shorts, but it’s fairly stiff, so I can’t say I’m a huge fan.

How much elastic will I need?

For double channel / 3/4″ (19 mm) wide: we recommend a length of your waist measurement for 3/4″ wide elastic (Example: If your waist is 40,” you’ll need 2 pieces of elastic 20″ long, or 40″ total)

For single channel / 1.5″ (38 mm) wide: we recommend a length of half your waist measurement (Example: If your waist is 40″, you’ll need one piece of 20″ elastic)

Get your Rose pattern in my shop HERE!

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