Constructing Mouse’s Culottes


I was worried this kinda-beefy crepe wouldn’t press well and would lose its crinkle to the iron, but it actually behaved itself very well. Obviously didn’t press like a cotton but it took a crease and nothing I did seemed to affect the texture. Win! I tacked the pleats closed at the middle and bottom to help keep them closed and neat while constructing the pockets, because they were annoying during the muslin construction. I also ignored the instructions and hand basted them an inch from the top *before* sewing the stay-stitching, so that I could hand baste while the pins were still in, and it made the stay stitching much easier, as the bottom of the pleat wasn’t swinging around causing problems.

I didn’t bother with pattern placement at all – I had so little fabric, and still so little experience, I wanted to keep it easy and let myself off. Despite my irreverence, the sewing gods smiled on me and hid this one mistake in the print (that I hadn’t noticed!) neatly inside the very top of one of the pleats, where I’d bet it’ll never get noticed. Until I point it out because I’m so pleased.

Pockets and leg seams weren’t photographed but I made sure to use a sufficient zigzag when sewing along the direction of the stretch. I tested on a scrap how wide the zigzag needed to be to avoid popping the stitches when the fabric stretches

The front of the waistband, with an inch overlap beyond each side seam, is interfaced. When sewing it on, a 2″ gap was left just in front of each side seam, for insertion of the back elastic. Which was then secured with lines of vertical stitching in line with the side seam.

The hem was folded up a half inch and then another full inch and just stitched down with two lines of zigzags. I used the zigzags because I’m really actually enjoying how neat they come out. Plus they did get a bit hidden in the print and I’m still a bit scared of the twin needles.

I used two lines of stitching because I didn’t want the hem fold rolling round/down, but I’m not sure if the added structure will make the culottes flare in a fun way or will interfere with the skirt illusion. We’ll have to see when she puts them on!

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