Activewear, activewear…

July 7, 2017   /   bythornberry  / Categories :  Feeds

Those of you who have been following my blog for a while know that I am not a sporting person.  Or an active one, really.  I know the benefits of exercise, and have gone through period of life where I’ve attended a gym, or walked regularly, but overall it really isn’t my thing.  What I like about exercise is how I feel when it finishes.  However, I do recognise that as someone rapidly approaching a significant birthday I really do need to improve my overall fitness.  On my work days I generally get off the train at an earlier station and walk for 25 minutes to work.  And last year I tried going to yoga – which is what this blog post is all about. So, shield your eyes, because here comes my “activewear”.


These leggings are sewn from the Stylearc Laura leggings pattern. It’s a simple one piece pattern and works just fine for me.


There are loads of leggings patterns around if you want to sew your own activewear – it really depends on what features you are looking for.  I’ve got a few others patterns I haven’t tried yet, including the Papercut Patterns Ooh La La leggings, but there are SO many that you can really go wild.  It depends on what type of waistband treatment you like, if you want seaming details, pockets, etc.  Jalie have some great patterns, as do Simplicity at the moment and a fair few independent pattern companies.  Experiment and have fun – or do what I did and sew up a basic style in fabulous fabrics!


My stretchy leggings fabrics probably came from Rathdowne Fabrics. I sewed exactly the same pattern in each of the fabrics, and the fit is quite different between them depending on the thickness of the fabric and the amount of stretch. Please be aware of that when sewing stretch fabrics – fit can be highly fabric dependent. I sewed these up on the overlocker, and used a zig-zag to secure the hems and the waist elastic. I don’t own a coverstitch machine. And because I know that leggings are not pants, I sewed some longer tops with bands at the bottom to go with them. I learned very quickly that for yoga I needed tops that were secure at the waist, otherwise they draped and fell back and exposed much too much in various poses. Hoods were a pain for the same reason – they got in the way. This orange top is a Jalie pattern that has been in my stash for ages. It was really a trial garment – I need to try it again in another fabric, probably a size larger.


The purple top is a Sewaholic Renfrew, and boy, that neckline! That’s a definite fail and is what comes from using the pattern piece provided for the neckband.


Check out those ripples – eeuurrgghh. Even the magic power of the steam iron couldn’t fix that. So I got out the unpicker, took out all those zig zag stitches, took out all the overlocking, cut the band shorter, and stitched it back into place. SO much better!  Once again I refer you to this great tutorial by Gillian of Crafting A Rainbow for determining knit neckband length.


Well, despite now having clothes to wear to yoga and a myriad of activewear sewing patterns, am I now embracing a more active lifestyle? Um, no. I haven’t been to yoga since last year….

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