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Monday, January 15, 2018

P4P Mama Bear Joggers - TNT pant pattern that does it all!

The P4P Mama Bear Joggers (afflink) has become a total workhorse pattern that I've used at least a dozen times in the past year. The funny thing is that I wasn't that excited by it when it was first released. I didn't see myself ever wearing full length joggers and so I sort of dismissed the pattern outright.

I was an idiot. LOL

I changed my tune in the spring when I was looking for a shorts pattern for myself. It was pointed out that the cute jogger style short I was looking to make was very similar to the Mama Bear Joggers pattern, so I bought it and the obsession began. It's become a staple in my closet for 3 very different clothing items:

Casual Shorts
The first time I used this pattern was to try and make a pair of woven cotton shorts that were relaxed, but not super short. While the Joggers pattern is designed for knits/fabric with stretch, I looked at the finished pattern measurements and thought I'd give it a try with some leftover woven madras plaid. I added several inches of length, graded from a Medium hip to Large thigh, and changed the waistband to accommodate a single row of 1.25" elastic instead of 3 rows of narrower elastic. I was thrilled with my final garment!

The woven shorts were so comfy and awesome, that I then went back and made 4 more pairs out of a variety of knit fabrics. The floral french terry shorts (fabrics from So Sew English) are very casual and perfect for running around with the boys. I may not be winning any fashion awards with these, but they are insanely comfortable in the summer heat.

This bright floral liverpool knit pair is slightly dressy and works well when I'm trying to look cute-ish, but I'm melting because it's 100 degrees out.

And lastly, in denim-faced french terry from (LA Finch Fabrics) this pattern makes the perfect faux denim shorts! I wore them with everything, all of the time this summer. I made sure to add contrast top-stitching to mimic real denim shorts and back pockets. Such a classic summer staple!

Sleep Shorts
So, I liked my modified shorts pattern so much that I thought it would also be perfect for PJ shorts, which I desperately needed to replace this summer. I removed the extra length I had added, skipped the pockets and kept the waistband the same. Yup, perfect PJ shorts! (and yes, I do love fun prints for pajamas)

Casual Pants
I might not wear jogger pants to the ankles, but I started to think that I might like a cropped pair of jogger pants to wear with flats or sneakers. Again, I started with my modified shorts pattern as the base and traced it to the full pant length. Ultimately, I removed 2.5" inches of length, added a 2.5" hem and then cuffed them up. Cropped, cuffed joggers are my jam you guys! I made a pair in black french terry in the summer and wore them all of the time. Like, I couldn't keep them in my closet because I was either wearing them or they were in the laundry.

One of my last sewing projects for 2017 and first projects for 2018 were 2 new pairs of cropped joggers - one pair in olive modal french terry and one in medallion print french terry (fabrics from So Sew English). I'm not usually one for printed pants that I wear outside of the house, but this fabric just really looked like it wanted to be pants, so I went with it. I love this silhouette for comfy, casual, but still put together pants and appreciate that they work with a variety of both shoes and tops.

I am always on the hunt for good TNT (tried n true) patterns and this one obviously fits the bill for me. The fact that I can make 3 very different garments from one pattern helps me stretch my precious sewing time a bit farther, which is very appreciated. This will definitely not be the last time you see a garment sewn up using this pattern from me - aside from more summer shorts, I have plans to make a pair of true joggers in an athletic knit for hip hop class. Since I never found my ideal pants for dance class, guess I'll just have to make my own. ;) 
Stay tuned!

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