Persephone Pants Review

The Persephone Pants by Anna Allen clothing are ubiquitous in the sewing community- everyone and their sister has made a pair, and they almost seem like magical pants- they look amazing on everyone!

They’re a very classic silhouette with a close fit, wide leg and no side seam. I’ve shied away from wide leg pants in the last few years, but since sewing my own clothes, have really been rekindling my love for them!

This pair was meant to be a wearable toile, as I knew I would likely run into some fit issues, but didn’t want to make an actual toile. I made it out of a thrifted canvas curtain panel, and I really love the colour.

In terms of sizing for this pattern, the size difference between my waist and hips can sometimes span 3 sizes (my waist is 29.5″ and my hips are about 41.5″). My normal fit issues include: the waist being too large, the crotch length/crotch hook being too short, thighs being too tight.

Before I cut my pattern pieces, I put up a poll on instagram asking about the sizing- the majority of people who voted said that they ran big, and to size down one or even two sizes. I was nervous about what size to cut, as they wouldn’t be easy to alter- as there is no side seam.

I’m also always hesitant to size down, as you can always take away fabric, but you can’t add it! Given the feedback, I decided to just size down 1 size, so I made a size 10. The pattern instructions advise to adjust the waist by using the darts, so I didn’t bother grading and my waist measurements were about right for the size 10 (there are also instructions on how to grade to a smaller or larger waist if you need, on Anna Allen’s blog). This size ended up being too small for my preference- see below for more details on the fit.

The construction of the pants was very smooth and easy – they came together a lot faster than I thought they would! The only change I made was to sew the waistband differently. The instructions say to fold the edges in and topstitch them down, but I chose to flip the waistband inside out (at center front) and sew CF seam with the right sides facing, then trimmed and flipped it right side out. I think it gives a much cleaner look this way.

In terms of fit- the crotch was the major issue, and was too tight. I measured the pattern using a ruler and a method outlined by Michele Win in this blog post, and the crotch hooks and length were fine as measured, but after chatting with Michele over instagram, I think the tightness was attributed to the hips being too small. The finished hip measurement of the garment was .5″ smaller than my hip, and for trousers there really should be at least 1-2″ of ease. The waist also ended up too large, even though the finished garment measurements matched mine.

I’m hoping to figure out my fit issues in my next pair. I plan to make a straight size 12, and use the darts to adjust the waist appropriately.

I hemmed as instructed, which was perfect for my height, and I’m 5’6.

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