The Widest Trousers Of Them All

Ever since I made my beach pyjamas, I have developed a bit of an obsession.. to find or make a pair of super-duper wide-legged trousers. Prior to the birth of my beach pyjamas, I thought my Vivien of Holloway 1940s reproduction trousers were wide. Boy, was I wrong. As a matter of curiosity, I decided to measure the hem of various pairs of trousers I owned, to compare just how wide they actually are. I measured each hem straight across the bottom, each measurement is a single side only, as the trousers were layed flat.

  • Well, coming in at a massive 32 inches is of course, the beach pyjamas.
  • Next-up, is my pair of Collectif’s ‘Glenda’, at 14.5 inches.
  • Then, looking practically straight-leg by comparision, was my Vivien of Holloways, at a mere 12 inches.

I knew I wanted a happy medium, somewhere between my 32inch beach pyjamas, but much wider than my 12inch Vivien’s, and so the search began.

Now, this is where dear readers, you may think I am diverting the story. But hold tight, and all shall become clear. Every morning, when I wake-up I check my email and Instagram. One morning, I tapped the ‘explore’ tab on the latter, and discovered the delightful Boyer Sisters account. Which then led me onto their blog (which, by the way, is an absolute tonic to the soul!)

Browsing through their blog posts, I discovered that the middle sister, Brigid, shares a passion for sewing, just like me! Even more wonderful, she had recently launched her own vintage-inspired pattern line: Brijee Patterns.. and guess what the first pattern was? Yes – WIDE LEGGED TROUSERS!

The pattern is called the Linden Lady, and features a wonderful wide 1930s style leg. I purchased and downloaded the pattern, and began making a toile. The pattern itself was really easy to understand and work with, the instruction booklet is so cute too! Full of helpful hints and tips to offer support along the way.

As much as I loved the pattern, for my final pair of trousers, I decided to draft my own ‘upper section’ specific to my measurements. This is because I have a long body, therefore requiring a longer rise, and I found I needed more shaping from hip to waist, as my waist comes-in a significant amount. As I am an experienced sewer, I found it easiest to do this, rather than tweek the original pattern. However, the pattern does come with instructions for alterations, so I am sure an inexperienced sewer would be fine working with the pattern, and carrying out alterations in that manner.

Once I had drafted my own ‘upper section’, I then incorporated the fabulous leg shape from the Brijee pattern. Another toile, another fitting, et voila! Finally, here was the pair of trousers I had been dreaming about! I absolutely LOVE THEM. I am already planning on what fabric(s) to make them up in next. For this pair, I used a 95%cotton 5% elastane  brown twill, which of course I pre-shrunk and washed.

So, how wide are the hem on these beauties I hear you ask? A perfect 21 inches, just like Goldilocks, these ones are ‘just right’.

And if, like me, you enjoy gazing longingly at the fabulous trousers of the 1930s, I highly recommend the wonderfully named site  – Giant Pants of the ’30s. It features trousers, shorts, jodhpur’s, beach pyjamas, and more. Honestly, it’s a fabulous way to spend an evening!

Until next time dears xx


16 thoughts on “The Widest Trousers Of Them All

  1. Fraulein Nina says:

    Gosh, Jenny, those are fabulous! Funnily enough I just pinned this pattern the other day, I may definitely need to add them to the “need to sew soon” pile.

  2. Stephanie says:

    How fun! The Boyer sisters have a darling blog. 🙂 I think I need some wide legged 30s trousers. I wanted to try their pattern but it’s in quite a small size range.

  3. Esther says:

    These are Amazing! Im still swooning over your beach pyjamas. They inspired me to make my own wide leg trousers, which the hem measures at 24″ across! Im still learning how to walk in them with out falling over myself 😛

  4. Rebecca Young says:

    I saw this pattern on the Boyer Sisters blog. These trousers would suit my modest dress style but I am a little worried at how awkward it might be to walk in them.

  5. Jenny Frances says:

    Hi Esther!
    Haa ha, I find I can walk fine in these trousers and my beach pyjamas, but it is admittedly a different style of walking. More ‘strolling and gliding’ than rushing about 🙂 Your trousers sound amazing! I love your Swirl dress you made feat on your blog, and I’m so jealous that you can knit. Knitting is a skill that totally eludes me. My mother tried to teach me, but I was born left-handed, forced to be right-handed by relations and teachers, so I just cannot grasp knitting at all. I think I want to do it left-handed, and therein lies the confusion!

  6. Jenny Frances says:

    Hi Stephanie, I love their blog, I’m so glad I found it! I think Brigid is working on making the pattern available in a wider size range, which would be great! Wide-legged trousers for all! 🙂

  7. brigidboyer says:

    Jenny, these look AMAZING!! They are SO fabulous!
    And thank you so much for your kind words! It makes me so happy knowing that I have created something that can be useful to other people, and hearing encouragement from a lovely person like you inspires me to get up and go at making what I do even better. Now to get to work at finishing the standard sized version of the Linden Lady! 🙂

  8. Jenny Frances says:

    Aw Brigid, thank you so much! I love the trousers so much, it’s a fabulous pattern. I shall definitely be watching out for any patterns you produce next! Thank you also for your advice on my last post about dealing with anxiety, I did listen to that Andrews Sisters song and it did help. I actually find your blog really soothing, and your outlook on life really helps me to put things in perspective. I do not actually follow any religions, I have always belived in a higher power, and in the force of nature, but have never entered into an organised religion. I love your words on religion though, and personal growth, it definitely helps me to aspire to being a better person. XxxX

  9. Jenny Frances says:

    Oh wow! Yes, I went to the Arts Institute at Bournemouth, and studied Costume for the Screen and Stage. I think the university may have changed names since I went, as my best friend went back there to teach a couple of years ago, and she said it had a new name. How are you getting on? Which year are you in? XxX

  10. Fraulein Nina says:

    Small world! It;s now called the Arts University Bournemouth, but I’m also studying costume construction, about to be in my second year. 🙂 I’m loving it so far though of course it has its ups and downs, best decision I ever made to switch from an “academic degree” to something that made me happy. Did you enjoy your time there?

  11. Jessica Cangiano says:

    You look sensational in all of them – swoon!!! It’s funny, you know, I generally take well to wide legged pants, but only to a certain width, they they turn from flattering to scary unflattering on me (much me my short legs, petite height and curvy figure at work there in full force). Still, I’m grateful those that do work well for me (such as Heyday’s swing trousers) and will take even the widest pants ever, over the skinniest any day!

    ♥ Jessica

    *PS* I loved your interview on The Vintage Post!

  12. Jenny Frances says:

    I have yet to try Heyday’s swing trousers, I do love their lovely pale pistachio colour-way though. I can barely remeber when I last wore trousers that were not wide-legged now! 😀

  13. Jenny Frances says:

    Yes absolutely! Going to uni and ‘flying the nest’ were the best things I could have done for myself. It’s strange to think how different my life would be now if I had not left home and studied costume. Glad you are enjoying the course, my favourite year was my 2nd year – not so tedious on learning the fundamental studies, but just enough freedom to experiment with your creative ideas. XxX

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