First make & review: Sequoia Shorts - Sewing pattern from Itch to Stitch


Pants with a zip fly - worn by almost everybody, feared by many sewists and definitely high up the skill rating... do you agree? To be honest, I did fear them a little bit, but I knew: with proper instructions it's not a problem at all to make them.

Here they are, my first ever self sewn fancy pants with a zip fly: My Sequoia Shorts.

Sequoia Cargo Pants Shorts Sewing Pattern Itch to Stitch Indie Designer Minn's Things alternative fashion black

In 2018 I was at my first ever festival: Summerbreeze (located in Germany). It's all metal, in case you don't know, and usually has a wide range of subgenres with a lot of middle and smaller bands. Going to a festival came a bit as a surprise. I never thought I'd ever do that. Until it happened, that was. And wow, what an experience! As expected, I wasn't particularly happy about the group of people we (the boyfriend and I) travelled and camped with, but they didn't matter much. I saw so many amazing shows, almost everything I wanted to see, and had a great time despite all the pain (legs and back pain that is. Thanks bones for being so crooked!).
Same as with camping in general, choosing the right clothes is important. And what I learned at that festival was that I need a good pair of cargo pants. Lightweight, breathable, good when sweating and with a lot of pockets.

Sequoia Cargo Pants Shorts Sewing Pattern Itch to Stitch Indie Designer Minn's Things

I knew the perfect pattern for that, because I'd already seen it a few times: The Sequoia Cargos & Shorts from Itch to Stitch.

These are the features according to Itch to Stitch:

  • Functional fly front zipper with snap closure
  • Ribbing/elastic waistband
  • Relaxed and straight leg silhouette
  • Comfortable medium rise
  • Front patch pockets with slanted openings
  • Back patch pockets with flaps and snap closure
  • Options for long pants and shorts
  • Side cargo pockets with flaps and snap closure (with long pants option only)
  • Leg strap for securing rolled up pant legs (with long pants option only)
  • Layers feature (print only the sizes you need)

Sequoia Cargo Pants Shorts Sewing Pattern Itch to Stitch Indie Designer Minn's Things front zip fly closure
Front view: zip fly closure with snaps; ribbing waistband

I liked the big pockets, the general use of snaps and the waistband - though I could not imagine how that was supposed to actually work before I tried it. 
What I don't like is the sizing range. 00 (waist 64,5 cm / hips 84,5 cm) to 20 (waist 103 cm / hips 122 cm) is not much. As far as I know, these are the usual sizes for Itch to Stitch patterns. I've read that the designer has been approached to add more sizes, but as of today (20th Feb. 2020) I cannot find any information that this is planned. Bummer! 

Sequoia Cargo Pants Shorts Sewing Pattern Itch to Stitch Indie Designer Minn's Things back pockets flap
Back view: Back pocket with flap and snaps

This is my first pattern from this designer and I had no idea how it would fit me. Therefore I made these shorts as my first try. 
Now, in order to go on I need to fill you in on my problem with (pants) sewing patterns and the waist measurement. As you (probably) know, the (actual) waist is where you bend and on most people it's also the smallest part between bust and hips. Then there is another circumference people often call their waist and this one is where you wear your pants - where the waistband of pants sits. As the second definition is so wide-spread I cannot rule out the possibility that a designer might use the second one for drafting their pants patterns. And they usually don't say which waist they use. 
The circumference difference between my "where I bend"-waist and my "where my pants sit"-waist is about 20cm (almost 8 inches). In this case this is a difference of 5 sizes. 

Sequoia Cargo Pants Shorts Sewing Pattern Itch to Stitch Indie Designer Minn's Things front crotch

So I skipped the sizing instructions for the waist. I measured the rise on the paper pattern and compared that to myself to find out where the Sequoia's would sit on me and then I measured the circumference there. This told me I'd need a size 8 for the waist and a size 6 for the hips. Having not made woven pants before I got pretty scared of them ending up too small. So I made a decision and made a straight size 8. Guess what, it's too big - on the waist too. And I even removed ~2cm of the knit part of the waistband after I realized it's going to be way too big. Bummer! 

Sequoia Cargo Pants Shorts Sewing Pattern Itch to Stitch Indie Designer Minn's Things side view big pockets

Besides the garment being too big there is also my standard butt fit issue. I need more space back there. It's not as noticable because of the general size, but I can feel it - the crotch cuts in. 
So, if I were to make them again, I'd make them smaller and add a full butt adjustment. Since the legs are straight I don't think I'd need more space for my calves. 

Sequoia Cargo Pants Shorts Sewing Pattern Itch to Stitch Indie Designer Minn's Things back full butt

The fabric I used is a very soft and lightweight twill. It's just a liiittle bit stretchy and consists of 96% organic cotton and 4% elasthane. I bought it offline in a local store, but Biostoffe sells it online too. 

Sequoia Cargo Pants Shorts Sewing Pattern Itch to Stitch Indie Designer Minn's Things front crotch length

I have not yet decided if I will actually make the full cargo pants. I probably will though. I know I planned on not supporting non-size-inclusive designers anymore, but I had bought this pattern before that. Also, I don't know of another pattern like it, which are size inclusive. If you happen to know any, I'd love to hear your suggestion! 

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