Back in the list making stages of planning what I wanted to make and take on vacation, I knew I needed to sew pants. As deeply as my love runs for McCall's 6696, I didn't want to limit myself to dresses the entire time we were away. Fortunately, for me, the Pauline Alice release of the Sorell Trousers pattern perfectly coincided with my list making. It was love at first sight. These wide leg trousers are everything I love about old Hollywood trouser styles with modern elements that seamlessly translate into a contemporary wardrobe.
These pants have a moderate rise, which eliminates the 'mom butt' that accompanies higher waisted vintage designs and allows the pleats on the front of the pant to hang below the fullest part of the abdomen, reducing the appearance of bulk in the midsection. The volume in the leg of the trouser beautifully balances out the proportions of the body. The result is a very flattering, incredibly comfortable, and, in my opinion, very classy and classic looking trouser.
The pattern features deep front pockets and welt pockets on the rear. I chose to eliminate the watch pocket on the front of the pants. It's a cute detail, but I worried it would add bulk. I sewed this version in a black linen/rayon blend fabric. The fabric worked nicely with the pattern and provides ample swish when I walked, but I do prefer a heavier fabric for these pants. The only other modification I made to this pattern was to reduce the length of the pant leg by 3 inches (I am 5'1" (and a half) for interested parties).
I topped these pants with another sleeveless Archer blouse. I made the blouse using some stashed estate sale rayon that I was surprised to discover had an Alexander Henry maker's mark printed on its selvages. I have come to terms with the realization that I cannot stop myself from sewing more Archers. It's a four season pattern, and I can always use another.
On that subject, I really could use another black 4ply cardigan. My Grace cardigan, shown in these photos, goes with me on every trip I take. It's easily the most practical and useful garment I've ever made.
We spent our first full day in Paris getting acquainted with and oriented with the city. The best way I know to get comfortable in a place is to explore on foot. Aimless exploration, however, is not my strong suit. I like to have a purpose to my meandering. In Brussels, we used the comic murals and chocolate shops as a way to propel ourselves around the city. For our first day in Paris, we used a map of covered passages.
Mike and I accidentally stumbled into the Galeries Royales Saint-Hubert during our chocolate hunting adventure, and we were hopeful that the Paris Passages/Galleries would be as fun to explore. The passages are a 19th century equivalent to present day shopping malls. The covered corridors protected shoppers from the rain and/or other inclement weather and were formerly a very high-end shopping destination. Today, they largely house specialty and antique shops.
If you do decide to tour the covered passages of Paris, I would suggest you take a pass on Passage Du Prado and Passage Du Ponceau. They were among the first passages on our route. They are poorly kept and filled with sketchy businesses. The passages got better as we went along. We were delighted to stumbled upon Lil Weasel in Passage du Grand Cerf and we found a favorite food stop, Caramel Sarasin on our way out of Passage des 2 Soeurs.
We even manged to make our way down to the Louvre campus before calling it quits. We covered a lot of ground on our first day in town; 10miles or more if Fitbits and phone pedometers are accurate.