M7547 Sew-Along: Darts and Pockets (steps 1-13)

McCall's M7547 Sew-Along

Welcome to Week 4 of the McCall’s M7547 sew-along. If you’re keeping pace with us you should have made a muslin and cut out your fashion fabric by now. If you aren’t sewing along in real-time, no worries! We’ll leave these posts up indefinitely.

Since so many of you have told us you want more video tutorials, here’s a straightforward video I made that explains how to do all the steps this week, from the darts in the beginning through adding the pockets in step 13. (Excuse the low production values!)

Sewing darts on the back pockets. Making darts on midweight woven fabrics is pretty easy to do. First, mark on the wrong side of your fabric where your dart begins and ends. In wovens that don’t fray I like to make little snips outside the seamline to mark where the dart legs start. These make it easier to line up the dart legs.

Stitch your dart as you normally do. When I get about .5″ away from the dart point, I reduce my stitch length to about 1, stitching right off the fabric. Tie a knot in the threads to secure your stitches. The small stitches near the dart point create a secure dart that holds up to stress.

McCall's M7547 Sew-Along
Back dart in M7547 pants pattern. My fabric is a stretch cotton twill I found in the garment district.

Stitching the pockets. First, pockets are a personal design choice. You can add them or omit them; either way these pants/overalls will still look good. I’m not crazy about back pockets on me, so I only made the cargo-style pockets for the front.

For these cargo pockets you’re going to make a narrow hem at the curved upper edge, where your hand slips in the pocket. Turn under 5/8″ here and press. Then fold under the seam allowance and press so you have a narrow hem. Stitch.

Next, turn under the seam allowance on remaining pocket edges, except for the little part at the top that will be enclosed by the waistband. To guarantee that I’m pressing under exactly 5/8″, I stitch just a hair to the right of the 5/8″ seamline, creating a stitching line that becomes my pressing line. I used to turn and press under using a seam gauge to measure, but that’s time-consuming and harder to maintain a consistent 5/8″ accuracy.

McCall's M7547 Sew-Along
Miter the corners to get a sharp point here. Fold in the corner at the point where the seamlines intersect; press. Then turn in seamlines and press again.

McCall's M7547 Sew-Along

Pin your pockets in place matching the symbols at the upper edge near the waist. In the video I show you how to do this and how to make sure both the left side and the right side of your pants are mirror images.

Edgestitch the pockets in place, then topstitch about 1/4″or less away from the edgestitching. Baste the upper edge of the pocket in place.
McCall's M7547 Sew-Along

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Note: In step 10 we tell you to trim away the right front mock fly extension. Do this if you plan to sew a mock fly. Since I’m omitting the mock fly in my version, after I took the above photo I trimmed the extension on both front pieces.

Next week on the sew-along: My co-host Amanda will walk you through steps 14-24. Don’t forget to join our Facebook Group for the sew-along! And readers, when I tell you that these M7547 pants are one of my most favorite things I’ve sewn recently, it is NO LIE. Love these pants and am already obsessing about making another pair.

M7547 Sew-Along: Making a Muslin

McCall's M7547 Sew-Along

This week on the sew-along we’re talking about making a muslin of your pants or overalls before you cut into your fashion fabric. Here is our sage advice on this topic:

A muslin is something you never regret making. Not making a muslin is something you often regret.

I made one, as you see here, and while I was happy with most of the fit, the muslin helped me see that I needed to narrow the fit in the thigh area. I altered my pattern tissue to reflect this, and now hopefully I won’t need to fiddle with this area when I make my real pants.

To learn more about making a muslin for this particular pattern, head over to my sew-along co-host’s blog, Amanda’s Adventures in Sewing.

amandaturner1977
Spotted on Instagram: amandaturner1977’s version of M7547 pants. Love these!

Have you joined our Facebook group for this sew-along? It’s a great place to share your progress and ask questions. We’ll keep it open to new members through the end of May.

Next week in the sew-along: Pockets (steps 1-13)

Announcing the 2017 Spring Sew-Along

McCall Pattern Company Spring 2017 Sew-Along

It’s sew-along time! Each spring for our sew-alongs we choose a pattern or style that’s a little more beginner-friendly, preferring to tackle the harder stuff in the fall. The past two springs we’ve done dresses—a wrap dress and a shirtdress. It’s about time we thought about sewing pants, right?! Joining us on this sew-along as co-host is the fabulous Amanda of Amanda’s Adventures in Sewing.

M7547_aThe main pattern we chose for this sew-along is McCall’s M7547. We like that it has four view options: overalls, short overalls, flare pants, and slim pants. You can choose to sew any of these. The pants:

  • have a side zipper (the “fly” you see in the illustrations is just decorative stitching)
  • are fitted through the hips and upper thigh
  • have a slim leg in View B
  • have a flare leg in View A
  • are high-waisted with the waistband sitting at the true waist

This is a really great pattern for those of you who are new to sewing, or who want to try pants for the first time or again. High-waisted pants are really on trend right now, and next week we’ll be sharing lots of style inspiration and fabric ideas. Plus, making a side-zip pant is an easy gateway to sewing zip-front pants, and you can apply this same knowledge to future side-zip skirts you might make.

Sew-Along schedule for blog posts:

Week of 3/3:  Announce sew-along

Week of 3/10:  Style inspiration; suitable fabrics

Week of 3/17: Making a muslin to assess fit

Week of 3/24: Pockets (steps 1-13)

Week of 3/31: Seams and zipper (steps 14-24)

Week of 4/7: Waistband and overalls bib (steps 29-61)

Week of 4/14:  Finishing (steps 62-66)

Week of 4/21: Big reveal

Our sew-alongs are always go-at-your-own pace. Some of you will finish way ahead of this schedule, and some of won’t finish for months. No worries! Whatever works for your schedule. We will leave the sew-along blog posts up indefinitely. We’ll also create a sew-along Facebook group where we can share our progress with each other (coming soon).

Personally, I’m really excited about this sew-along. I’m desperate for new pants that aren’t black trousers. Amanda is going to make View D, the overalls, and I’m going to make View A, but more of a cropped flare, kind of like these pants:

Giambattista Valli pants, available at Net-a-Porter
Giambattista Valli pants, available at Net-a-Porter

We really hope you’ll be joining us for this sew-along! You don’t need to sign up anywhere or make any kind of public pledge: just sew along at home and join the Facebook group, if you’d like. It’s a very chill kind of thing!