Pattern Review: McCalls 6930 Shorts

Also known as Ann’s Epic Fail, but soon to be a save, dammit.

Nice try, chica.

Let me take you through the steps first, then we’ll get to the subtitle…

Pattern Description: from McCalls website: MISSES’ SHORTS AND PANTS: Fitted shorts or tapered pants (below waist) have shaped waistband, side front pockets and back zipper. A and B: back pockets. C: carriers and stitched hems.

I made view A.

Sizing: 6-22. I made a size 14 (see below)

Fabric Used: Herringbone Linen (sold out, sorry) from Gorgeous Fabrics, of course. A remnant of another sold-out stretch charmeuse, also from Gorgeous Fabrics.

Machines and Tools Used: Pfaff home machine, Juki home serger.

Needle/Notions Used: Universal 70/10 needle, Pro-Weft Interfacing from Fashion Sewing Supply, 7 inch zipper, two trouser hook/eyes, thread.

Tips Used during Construction: Press That Bad Mamma Jamma, “J” or “L”?

Did it look like the photo or drawing when you got through? Yes

How were the instructions? They were good. I didn’t use them too much, but I did check them over and they seem quite adequate.

Construction Notes: I used my Pfaff to stitch all the seams, and I finished the seam allowances (this fabric is, like many linens, ravelly) with my home serger. I changed the zipper to a lapped zipper application, using the instructions in my 1980 vintage Vogue Sewing Book.

The pockets are even, and I’m going to fix that underlap

I used a charmeuse for the pocket linings:

Charmeuse lining is to the left


And the front,

I’ll tell you, my construction on these shorts was nothing short of excellence. Seriously. I got my mojo going and I finished every seam, pressed every detail, did elegant hand sewing in small areas and generally was smug as all get out about what a good job I was doing.

And then…

Likes/Dislikes: Here’s both a big complaint with this pattern and a major “Doh!” face palm moment at myself. This bugger runs BIG. REALLY big. Like, borderline huge. Shame on me for not doing a flat pattern measurement, but the last time I made a McCalls shorts pattern they ended up being a bit too tight. I had made a 12, so I figured the 14 would be fine. Wrong. The 14 is seriously about two inches too big through the waist. Shame on me for not doing a flat pattern measurement and assuming the pattern draft was consistent. Hah! My favorite ever boss, Joe, had a favored saying: “When you assume, you make an ASS of U and ME.” Joe was so right. I will do flat pattern measurements from now on. As it is, I’ll take in the side seams and be done with it. I don’t get too wound around the axle about summer shorts. After all. I live in New England. Summer will be over in, oh about 3 weeks.

Would you do it again? Would you recommend it? Mmmmmm,no.

Conclusion: Good looking shorts. Check the pattern measurements against your own before you cut, or make a muslin. I didn’t do either and the little b*stards are Just. Too. Big. But they are excellently prepared! Here’s the front view.


Coda: Wildlife Among Us!
This evening, these two hen turkeys and their little drumsticks came wandering through our front yard. Hoover really, REALLY wanted to go chase them.
Turkeys 7-15-14

Happy sewing!

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Gorgeous Fabrics

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4 thoughts on “Pattern Review: McCalls 6930 Shorts”

  1. I made some shorts off that pattern too. Yes, I measured, but I kept thinking I couldn’t be measuring right because it was so big, so I made a muslin. Yes, it really is that big. Thought I could just put elastic in the waist of the muslin and use them for gardening shorts…erm, no. I could make sails with them though. I cut the pattern down, and cut it down, and cut it DOWN and am currently using the pattern size that is normally my RTW size. And it fits. Mostly.

    Your finish work is gorgeous, by the way!

  2. Your little drumsticks are little indeed. Out here on the west coast they are already half adult size. Both my cats were glued to the window, not sure whether to chatter at the prey or hiss at the rival. It seems that ducks on the lawn are the maximum prey size, and turkeys are in some undefined gray area.

  3. So sorry! I do hate it when that happens. Sometimes we are just too excited to get started to do those extra steps ….been there!

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