sew + tell: maryam’s hollywood trousers (and shorts!)

I was wowed by Maryam’s handmade shorts suit when I saw it on Instagram. She hacked the Hollywood Trousers pattern to come up with this sophisticated look, then sewed a full-length pair of trousers in classic camel. Here she is to talk about her makes.

Name: Maryam A
Country: United Kingdom/Saudi Arabia
Where can we find you on the internet? Instagram

Project details

Pattern used: Hollywood Trousers
Fabric used: Cotton suiting and wool-viscose blend suiting
Did the fabric work well? Yes! They draped differently, but both suited the pattern perfectly!

Maryam sewed herself a DIY shorts suit and a pair of classic trousers.

How did the sewing go?
I found the pattern for the Hollywood Trousers when on the hunt for classic, high-waisted trousers that I could hack into a pair of tailored shorts. After seeing this style of shorts all over the runways last year, I had an idea to make a suit inspired by the styles.

For my first pair, I sourced a medium weight cotton suiting with a very small black and white check. The check is so small, that the fabric appears gray from a distance.

The Hollywood Trousers are straightforward to make, thanks to the clear instructions in the pattern booklet. These were the first pair of trousers I had made in years, and I appreciated how the instructions really supported the process of creating them.

After making a muslin, I marked where I wanted to shorten them, which was just at the knee. I chose not to line the shorts, although this is an option for the trousers.

Maryam sewed herself a DIY shorts suit and a pair of classic trousers.

I really appreciate how the pocket back extends across the interior of the front trouser pattern piece. I find this drafting detail gives a little bit of appreciated support around the stomach area.

The pockets are cleverly hidden in the side seams. On my first pair, I did find the way I had sewn them up caused a little bit of gaping, so that the pockets are visible when I’m standing. This was not an issue on my second pair. I expect this could be due to me inaccurately aligning or cutting the notches when assembling the pockets.

Otherwise, these were a really fun and satisfying sew!

The next pair I made was in a camel-colored wool-viscose suiting with a really lovely drape. The way this pattern is cut means this heavier weight fabric hangs really nicely on the body.

Maryam sewed herself a DIY shorts suit and a pair of classic trousers.

A special detail I added to these trousers was a vintage enamel button that I purchased as part of a job lot of sewing supplies at an antique fair. I am really loving camel with turquoise at the moment and have since made a jacket in teal linen that uses a matching button! The result is a smart pair of trousers that I have worn for interviews and felt really confident in!

What was the best part?
The shape of the trousers is my favorite part of the pattern: The leg width finds a happy medium between wide-leg and straight-cut style. The way the pattern skims the hips really captures the Old Hollywood aesthetic it goes for.


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  1. Susan Terrill

    All I can say is WOW and beautifully done. I have not gotten past a muslin which did not go well. Those are fantastic.

  2. Cindy Cooksey

    Your suit with short trousers is so chic! Your work is impeccable.

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