The Art Museum Trousers pattern has always been one of my favorite woven fabric patterns to sew for my sons. They love the ease of the elastic waist, and I like the clean look of the smooth waistband in the center front.
After I made a version of the Lisboa Walking Shorts as a tester, I knew that my next version would include some of my favorite features of the Art Museum Trousers: a mock-fly front and a smooth center-front waistband.
To make the mock-fly front, I taped a rectangle that was approximately 2 1/4″ wide by 7 1/4″ tall to the shorts front pattern piece. I then folded it along the center front edge of the pattern piece to trace the top edge of the rectangle to be a mirror of the waist contour. I curved the bottom corner of the rectangle to mimic the shape of a zip fly.
I sewed the mock fly just as the Art Museum Trousers are constructed. This means that I had to construct the center-front and center-back seams of the Lisboa Shorts first, then the side seams, and finally the crotch seam. Although the top-stitching is hard to photograph with my fabric choice, I think the mock fly makes the shorts appear a bit more tailored without much additional sewing effort. I’m still debating whether I should add a button to the center to more closely mimic a zip-fly front.
To create a smooth center-front waistband without a paper bag waist, I made the following changes:
I reduced the height of the waistband pattern piece by 1 1/2″ to eliminate the paper bag waist of the original Lisboa design. I estimated that I wanted the smooth waistband section to be 6″ across the front, so I fused a 6″ piece of interfacing in the center front. I also reduced the waistband elastic by 6″. Just like with the Art Museum Trousers, I secured the elastic to the waistband and hid those top-stitches under the front belt loops.
I’m usually not one to make a fuss about including pockets, but since I was trying to make a more dressy pair of shorts, I was sure to include the welt pockets of View A.
When I’m sewing clothes for myself, I occasionally enjoy slowing down to hand-baste a few parts, and this time, I hand-basted the stitching lines for the welt pockets. I also find that pulling out hand basting stitches later is easier than unpicking machine basting stitches.
I used a Japanese cotton canvas fabric from my stash that feels almost like a mid-weight slub linen blend. It is not stiff at all but still has body to make the shorts feel structured and not loose.
I am sure I will enjoy wearing these new shorts throughout this summer with my recently blogged about white linen Verdun Woven T-shirt!