I loved Evelyn’s discussion on fabric choice from Tuesday, but now you may be asking, “Katie, where do I find all those beautiful fabrics!” Never fear — I spend an inordinate amount of time perusing fabric shops and can always come up with some good ideas!
So if you’re still sourcing fabrics for our perfect pants, read on!
I love wearing jeans, but I know not everyone shares my love of zip flys and waistbands. And even I love a good pair of loose, flowy culottes, particularly in warmer months.
If flowy culottes are your jam, you have tons of fabrics to choose from! A plush stretch velvet would be amazing for colder weather or a special event. Flowy wovens are also a great choice for this type of garment. Rayon crepe, tencel twill, and rayon challis would all make beautiful culottes.
Maybe you want to go for comfortable and casual — in that case, joggers may be your casual pants of choice. When most people think joggers, they think French Terry. While French Terry is a great choice for joggers, don’t rule out other knits. Ponte and double knit are both great for a heavier pair of joggers, and cotton or bamboo spandex would make beautiful lighter weight pants.
And don’t forget about wovens! Most jogger patterns require knit fabrics, but there are a few that can be made in flowy wovens. If woven joggers are your future, all of the flowy wovens linked for culottes would also be great choices.
And now we come to my favorite — classic jeans! Most jeans patterns these days require stretch denim. Looser boyfriend jeans can use non-stretch denim, but the most popular jeans patterns definitely need stretch denim.
A piece of advice on stretch denim — get good quality denim. When you spending hours and hours making jeans, it’s really frustrating to find them uncomfortable or even unwearable because of cheap denim. I wrote in more detail about that very thing here.
Personally, I don’t like too much spandex in my stretch denim. The higher the spandex content, the more it will “snap back,” so keep that in mind when shopping for your fabric. I like my stretch denim to have about 2-3% spandex — enough to give it some stretch for fit and comfort, but not so much that the fabric won’t relax and mold to my body with wear.
In her Tuesday post, Evelyn wrote that she was disappointed in Cone Mills denim, expecting it to snap back more than it did. That’s the one area where my preference differs. I love how my Cone Mills behaves. It doesn’t snap back the way that knit fabric would, but it wears beautifully, relaxes over time, and molds to my body without getting saggy. I can also get away without washing it — well, pretty much ever — which happens to be one of my main goals with jeans!
Hopefully this all gives you a good starting place! And if you just want to peruse some pretty bottomweight fabrics, here are some of my favorite online shops:
- Stylemaker Fabrics: Their IG page is like fabric porn. So many beautiful things! They have a great selection of denim, including Evelyn’s favorite stretch denim.
- Threadbare Fabrics: A reliable source for Cone Mills and high quality denim. They usually carry both stretch and non-stretch denim.
- Harts Fabric: One of my favorite one-stop-shop fabric stores. They have a wide range of fabrics, including some really nice denim and stretch twill choices.
- Cali Fabrics: Another good option for a one-stop-shop. The denim isn’t always as high quality as from some other places, but if nothing else, its great for muslins, and maybe even the final product.
- Simply by Ti: Ti usually has a nice selection of quality stretch twill.
- Stevie Saint Fabrics: My favorite under-the-radar source for rayon challis and rayon crepe.
- LA Finch Fabrics: This shop can be a little bit addictive. They have a nicely-curated selection of both knits and wovens, including some denims and stretch twills.
So obviously this is not an exhaustive list, and please do not be offended if I forgot to include your favorite shop on my list.