A couple months back I took a #SewingDare from Gillian at Crafting A Rainbow. Gillian’s challenge: “I love your mustard skirt, and how it stands out against the neutrals in your wardrobe… so I dare you to make something else bright that can mix and match into your wardrobe!”
My stash is almost all neutrals, so I grabbed the most colorful fabric in there and started brainstorming. Generally I’m not a florals person, but this cotton twill has moved between my stash and my giveaway pile so many times it’s a little silly. The challenge and the recently released Chi-Town Chinos was a good push to getting cutting.
I really like the chino style of the Chi-Towns and have put the skirt version on my Sew Everything list. I definitely want more of these shorts, but that will have to wait for Spring sewing.
The Pattern: Chi-Town Chinos shorts from Alina Design Co. in size 10 based on my measurements. The pattern includes a shorts or skirt version and four options for back pockets.
I liked that you get all the pattern pieces ready right at the start and that the single piece front pocket is nicely finished with facings and french seams. There is a lot of attention to detail that makes everything about the shorts a step above.
The pattern and instructions have fitting built in, which is great for your first time sewing the pattern. The back pattern piece includes an extension that makes it easy to fit the waist and in my case a fuller seat. The instructions walk you through basting and fitting the back piece before you do your final sew.
I found I did not need the extension or need to do a full butt adjustment in my size, but I did have a lot of excess fabric in the back of the legs below my seat. I think this is an indicator that I need to size down and do a full butt adjustment for the smaller size. I ended up removing 1 in at the inseam and side seam of the back piece only. I like the fit I have now, so I probably won’t experiment with going down a size.
Next time I will also adjust the front crotch curve. I find it scoops out just a little too much for me.
I’m pretty impressed that most of the fitting issues were worked out on the first try by following the pattern instructions.
The fabric: One yard of Cone Mills cotton twill and about a FQ of lightweight cotton both from inherited stash.
I’m pleased that the shorts do work with several tops, but honestly the jury is still out on this print. I’ll need to give these some wearing around before I decide if they are “me” or if they will be downgraded to around the house shorts.
The Chi-Town Chino shorts took me about 5 hours to complete, including fitting and adjustments. I’m hoping to cut that down to 3.5 hours next time.
Total Cost: $13.75 Fabric $0 (inherited stash) Pattern $12 Notions: $1.75