Fashion Sewing

Drop It Like It’s Culotte

June 12, 2013

Oh yes, I went there. Used a bad rap song pun today? Yep, checking that off the list, haha!

This post was dangerously close to just being titled “Artsy Swirly Culottes.” Pretty boring, right? Well, after our definitely-not-boring-sort-of-vacation last week, I’m in the mood to live a little adventurously.

Ok, so about this vacation… Mr Sweet and I are sort of joking that it was more of a “fail-cation”. Over the course of a week we managed to get backed into while parked, have our car break down smack in the middle of nowhere, get towed back to teeny tiny town, discover that aforementioned teeny tiny town does not have parts to fix car, and then get towed four plus hours to large city where they could finally fix said car. Luckily, that large city was our intended destination anyway, so we still got to spend a few days relaxing. Aaaaaah. This was nice because the trip was originally supposed to be… to celebrate our anniversary. Mr Sweet and I celebrated our third wedding anniversary last week!

julidanpic_2(Whew! We finally made it!)

From drinking old coffee and eating beef jerky from our suitcase in the mechanics office (with all of the excitement and limited food options the first few days of our trip, we were starving by that point!) and later finally¬†eating burgers and drinking Prickly Pear margaritas by the pool at our hotel (yum!), I think that this will definitely be an anniversary that we remember! Yep, exciting stuff peeps. Pretty sure that I’m still winding down from all of that! And we’re definitely glad to be back home.

Anyway, I stitched up these Culottes before we left on vacation last week…


Can I just tell you how EXCITED I was for this pattern release?? The whole Breakwater Collection is gorgeous, but this pattern was the very first one that I couldn’t wait to stitch up.


I used a super floaty semi-sheer silk/cotton from Emma One Sock that I had been hanging on to since I saw the first preview pictures of this pattern in one of Megan’s email announcements.


After going back and forth over if I should line it or not, I eventually decided not to. The sides are a bit sheer in direct sunlight if I’m spinning around or something, but most of it is not. I think that construction-wise, lining it would have made the shorts part too bulky and thick compared to the rest of the skirt and that would have made it kind of awkward looking. It also would have changed the fluid drape of the skirt.


Is this a skirt or shorts? Ah, yes, it is shorts!

I’m not sure that I would have believed that these were really shorts if I didn’t already know! It’s pretty wild. One thing worth mentioning is that although the crotch part of these stays covered and pretty much acts like shorts on a windy day, if a breeze catches them just right, I did find that the sides can tend to blow up rather… errr… fantastically, so to speak. Not fantastic as in “ooooh wow, cool!” but more along the lines of “whoooa! oh no, yikes!” Like a big swoosh of wind and someone could possibly see an entire side of leg from waist to hip. Of course this is much better than the alternative… but I haven’t seen anyone else mention this yet, and I’m starting to wonder if I did something goofy in the construction. Perhaps its just the fabric choice?

Here are a few construction pics:

sweetlittlechickadee_taniaculottes_june2013_3These were really quick to sew and are really comfy to wear. I just stuck with a simple waistband finishing for my first pair and used a slightly longer stitch length for topstitching.


After fighting with my rolled hem foot on my sewing machine, I decided to go with a rolled hem on my serger. I think that it is still really delicate and floaty looking, which works with this delicate and floaty fabric. What do you think?


Here’s a closeup of the rolled hem and fabric. Painted-looking type fabrics are a weakness of mine, and this one looks like beautiful watercolor washes all merging into each other when you look at it closely.

Overall, I really like this pattern and will definitely be sewing it again! There isn’t really anything like it out there and that makes it really fun! I already have some fabric lined up for a few more pairs this summer and I’m really curious about using some thicker drape-y fabrics for some cooler weather pairs when fall comes around.


You can wear these with a long tee or tank tucked out for more of a “drop-waist” look or wear with a top tucked in for a more “retro” style. Which one do you like best?

A quick note about the length of the culottes that you may find helpful: I sewed up the small, but cut them to the length of the extra large. This added about two inches to the length of the culottes. Then, when I used the rolled hem on my serger, I just barely trimmed off the bottom part of the skirt to neaten it up a little.¬† I’m really glad that I added a few extra inches to the culottes, because otherwise I think that by the time I hemmed it definitely would have been to short for me! Next time I think that I might add an additional inch or so to the length, especially if I want to do a more traditional rolled hem on my sewing machine.

Thanks for reading!


Have you sewn up the Tania Culottes yet? Are they on your sewing list for summer? Also, do you have a favorite shorts pattern?