coastal cargos

March 13th, 2013

coastal cargos

I can be kind of a tightwad. I can’t help it–it’s in my midwestern blood to pinch pennies. But maybe you already knew that, seeing as I make my kids’ clothes (and toys and sheets). And I learned to make all those thing from free tutorials on the internet.

coastal cargos

This little red flag pops up in my head when I see a price tag on a pattern or tutorial and my stubborn, Midwestern self thinks, “Well, I could do that.” So I won’t buy the pattern, but instead try to make the garment using what I already know and maybe a poorly lit you tube video or two.

lined pockets

Results vary. Sometimes I’m wildly successful: the garment fits, the details are just right, only a few mistakes are visible. A success like that produces a sewer’s high. I am a genius! I will never buy clothes again! I am completely self sufficient!

zipper fly, closed

Other times, it all goes to hell.  I don’t think I need to elaborate.

zipper fly, open

It has taken me a long time to realize that patterns are there to guide you through the entire process. Maybe I should revise that statement: well written patterns guide you through the entire process.

cargo pocket

Some of the commercial pattern makers out there tend to throw you to the wolves.  But all the indie pattern designers that have been popping up lately genuinely want to teach you how to make the lovely garment they designed.

costal cargos

It’s taken me a year, but when I see an awesome pattern for sale I don’t immediately think, “pshaw, I could do that.” Instead I try to think, “Give the lady a little money, she just wants to show you how to sew better.”

costal cargos

So who taught me to make these awesome pants?  Complete with lined pockets, tuxedo stripe, button tabs, cargo pockets, functioning zipper fly –let me say that a little louder, Functioning Zipper Fly!   Melissa from Melly Sews and Blank Slate Patterns, that’s who.

costal cargos

She and three other designers have come together to give you a group of spring patterns called The Sun & Surf Collection.  All the patterns are adorable and perfect for spring sewing. The collection is only for sale until March 24!

coastal cargos

So give the nice ladies your money, because they just want to teach you how to make awesome clothes!

Sun & Surf at Sew a Straight Line | Sun & Surf at It’s Always Autumn | Sun & Surf at Elsie Marley | Sun & Surf at A Girl and a Glue Gun | Sun & Surf at Mama Says Sew | Sun & Surf at Girl, Inspired | Sun & Surf at Groovybaby and Mama | Sun & Surf at The Cottage Home | Sun & Surf at Craftiness is Not Optional | Sun & Surf at Skirtastop | Sun & Surf at Straight Grain | Sun & Surf at Me Sew Crazy | Sun & Surf at Delia Creates | Sun & Surf at Max California



51 Responses to coastal cargos

  1. Carla says:

    Yep. I tend to “save” money by not buying patterns. I’ve found you can get away with it for bitty babies and super simple stuff but you’re so right that indie patterns rule and teach you so much. I love the strip on these pants!

  2. erin says:

    these are perfect in every way. love the colors. love his shoes. all kinds of fantastic, Meg!

  3. sandesh says:

    The trousers came out so lovely, and thanks for the link the patterns are great and just what I need to update my son’s wardrobe.
    I am just discovering indie patterns, there are so many creative people out there making fantastic things…love it, so many ideas…so little sewing time in the day !!!

  4. Claire says:

    I love those. My dear boy is now 11 and his little sister 9. If anyone has suggestions of where I can find equally cool patterns for bigger kids I’d love to know. Strangely the 14 year old doesn’t want homemade clothes!

  5. Trine says:

    Meg – these are awesome!!!! Love the fabric – and the stripey side detail…wow!


  6. Jill says:

    I used to be a total tightwad about patterns, too, until I bought a few good ones. Now I have to stop myself from buying them all! There is something amazing about making a new garment for the first time and having it come out just right. Maybe I’m just getting lazier, but I love giving someone a little bit of money to do the hardest part for me.

    The cargos came out really cool! I am tempted by the whole collection.

  7. […] pants are what is right about sewing for boys. Elsie Marley picked the perfect fabrics for an amazing […]

  8. […] I’m in love with the bias trim that Meg of Elsie Marley used on her Coastal Cargos. […]

  9. Kate Sews says:

    Great write up and review. I’ve been debating about whether to buy this collection or not (do I need it/can I justify it right now ? etc) too. You are totally right about the helpfulness of Indie pattern makers vs big commercial pattern houses, I think I’ve learnt way more about sewing from the few independant pattern I’ve tested recently than I have from years of using commerical patterns. A professional dressmaker told me recently that often (big commercial) pattern instructions are written in a particular way/order not because its the best way to make the garment but to save space….

  10. Those pants are amazing!! I am totally buying this pattern! So hard to find cute boy pant patterns!!

  11. Alexandra R says:

    Does anyone know if these patterns will ever be made available individually?
    I think the cargo pants would be great for my daughter, but I can’t really justify buying the whole set for the one pattern….

  12. Rebecca says:

    You did such a great job! I love the color and the trim detail. Would you share where you got the fabric for the stripe detail?

  13. Becky says:

    I started making my own patterns when I got tired of spending money on ones that don’t fit my daughter and I was having to alter all of them. These indie designers make some sweet patterns, but most of them don’t go past size 8 – and my 11 year old wears a 12. I’m still waiting for one of them to realize how the 8-12 year old girl market is horribly under served by the sewing community!

  14. […] clothing at all. Everything that comes out from under her presser foot is pure gold. Seriously original and stylish clothes that are not too flashy, but always cool. And she was one of the bloggers that turned me on to […]

  15. Carla says:

    Okay, I just got this pattern as my “big” project for KCW. I’ve got two questions. Did you make your bias tape wider? Did you just skip the inseam bias and sew that seam old-school? (please say yes) ;)

    • meg says:

      I did not make the bias tape wider. The armhole were definitely the hardest part, but I felt like the bias tape was too long not necessarily too wide. I don’t know what inseam bias means, so I can’t tell you if I did it! :)