adult's clothing · sewing

Vintage McCalls 8149 pants

I have an extensive sewing pattern collection.  Some are unused while others were used a very long time ago but still remain happily ensconced in the stash.  The pattern that I used for these pants, McCalls 8149, is one of those from a long time ago.

vintage McCalls 8149 (copyright 1996) pants in linen viscose. Trying different silhouettes with the tops.

This pattern dates to 1996. It was part of a McCalls line called NYNY, which had their more “avant garde” and fashion forward patterns at the time. I have quite a few of these, and was pleasantly surprised to come across them when I was searching through the stash recently.

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I made the dress back in the late 1990’s, but hadn’t attempted any other garments in the pattern. I remember the dress quite clearly – I sewed it in a viscose orange/blue check. It was gorgeous fabric, and a good style for me. Actually, if I still had it, I’d wear it again now! I recently gave the cropped jacket a try, but it was too cropped after I shortened it through the body at the shorten/lengthen lines. I will give it another go after I return the pattern pieces to normal. I’m also keen to make the long coat/dress at some stage.

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So, back to the pants. I sewed up a wearable muslin from stash fabric a few weeks back, not expecting to like them all that much, but surprisingly I liked them a great deal!

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They have adjustable side ties to secure the waist. My waist is not much smaller than my hips, so there isn’t much gathering at the sides when I draw the ties in a little bit.  In the next pair I left off the side ties (and the pockets, because I was feeling lazy) and instead I inserted elastic into the waistband. I shortened the pants in two places at the marked shorten/lengthen lines, leaving this second pair a little longer than the wearable muslin.

vintage McCalls 8149 (copyright 1996) pants in linen viscose. Trying different silhouettes with the tops.

There is no side seam in these pants. Instead they have centre front and centre back princess seams on each leg, which that are topstitched for a little detail.  Although they are loose and wide, this does provide subtle shaping. Yes, they are incredibly high waisted, but I found them incredibly comfortable to wear as we trekked around Sea World yesterday (and enjoyed the rides and watching the shows – the dolphins really are incredible).

vintage McCalls 8149 (copyright 1996) pants in linen viscose. Trying different silhouettes with the tops.<

The fabric is linen/viscose from Darn Cheap Fabrics. It has a slightly ribbed texture. Maybe the linen is used for the warp and viscose for the weft, or vice versa? It’s certainly a very easy fabric to wear.

vintage McCalls 8149 (copyright 1996) pants in linen viscose. Trying different silhouettes with the tops.

I had a few dilemmas about what tops pair best with these loose and flowing pants. After trying on a few silhouettes I decided to embrace the “lagenlook” and wore them with a previously blogged linen tunic. However I quite like them with this previously blogged top as well.

vintage McCalls 8149 (copyright 1996) pants in linen viscose. Trying different silhouettes with the tops.

This spring and summer I am absolutely embracing the elastic waisted loose pant!  Such an easy style to wear, comfortable, keeps the sun off my lily white legs.  As I type that I think “how middle-aged of you” – but I am in my late forties, feel comfortable in my own skin, and am embracing styles that keep me feeling (and consequently I hope looking) good!

vintage McCalls 8149 (copyright 1996) pants in linen viscose. Trying different silhouettes with the tops.

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15 thoughts on “Vintage McCalls 8149 pants

  1. These look great especially with the brightly coloured top. I turned 47 last week and am currently still fighting those middle aged tendencies. I have started wearing ponte skirts and pants and have worn comfortable shoes for quite some time now. I can’t see me wearing loose pants any time soon despite liking them on everyone else but never say never!

  2. I’m in my late 40s, too, and you are an inspiration. I have that same pattern, but haven’t made it up. I worried about how it would look on my short legs. You carry the Lagenlook with aplomb.

    I wear mom jeans from a brand called (aptly) ‘Not Your Daughter’s Jeans’ with no shame. After all, they fit, I feel great in them, and they were responsibly manufactured.

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