Fast & Easy, But Still Chic: Elastic-Waist Pants

Posted on September 25, 2013 by Mood
Inspiration: Isabel Marant silk pants from Net-a-Porter

Isabel Marant silk pants available at Net-a-Porter, $665

My dream closet would be filled by pieces from Isabel Marant. So chic, so French, and so wearable. Take these silk pants from her, pictured above. They are utterly elegant, but they have an elastic waistband. Incroyable!

I rarely sew pants because I can always find a pair or two at Zara that fit my needs, but my sewing mojo was a-twitching at the thought of making chic elastic waistband pants. First came the fabric: this wonderful green wool twill print from Oscar de la Renta that I found on our wool floor here at Mood NYC. It's very drape-able and soft to the touch, so much so that I decided not to line these pants.

Oscar de la Renta wool print from Mood Fabrics NYC

That's the Oscar de la Renta wool in the middle. It's reading way brighter here in this photo than it is in real life. More of a dark green with a black print. Call our wool department at 212-730-5003 to buy or request a swatch; quantities are limited.

Next came the pattern: Simplicity 1808. There are a gazillion elastic-waist pants patterns out there, but I liked this one for the flat front panel part of the waistband. Figured it might eliminate some poofiness at the waistline, which it does. Also, pockets. Love pockets!
Simplicity 1808 elastic waist pants
If you sew this pattern, I strongly recommend you take the time to make a muslin first. I did and it was worth the time because these pants are very wide. I probably took about two inches off the outer seam, just to make them a little more narrow.

Another thing I recommend is to consider the weight of your fabric. The pattern calls for the waistband to be self-faced with your fashion fabric. In hindsight I wish I had made the underside of my waistband out of a thinner fabric, like silk, just to reduce some of the bulk. Or, made the entire waistband out of black silk charmeuse, like the Isabel Marant pants.

Chic elastic waist pants made from Oscar de la Renta wool from Mood Fabrics and Simplicity 1808

Apologies for the photo quality! I actually have these hoisted up a little higher than I should. They fit about one inch below the natural waistline.

Oscar de la Renta wool pants; fabric from Mood Fabrics

Detail of the front waistband placket. Yeah, I probably should have made the entire waistband out of silk charmeuse or some other lightweight contrast fabric, but I'm ok with it as is.

I am so happy with these pants. I love, love, love this Oscar de la Renta wool. I went the whole day at work feeling comfortable with this wool next to my bare legs—no itchy feeling at all—and then I never changed out of them until bed. I'm already searching the shelves here at Mood for more fabric to make another pair of these pants!

Want to make your own Isabel Marant-inspired pull-on pants? I suggest looking at's silk prints, wool challis (you may want to line), wool crepe (choose lightweight crepes; consider lining), and 4-ply silk. Now go get sewing!

Fast & Easy, But Still Chic: Elastic-Waist Pants - Mood Sewciety
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