Nixie briefs

One thing you read a lot about people making knickers is that it’s an excellent way to use up small scraps. Having seen the size of the pieces I was cutting out, I burst out laughing, – it turns out that if you have a big arse, you’re making big pants.

This is the Nixie brief from Jennifer Lauren Handmade, which comes in two views: hipster and high waisted. I gave both a shot with knits from my scrap bag, but I wouldn’t use the word ‘small’ anywhere near these pieces.

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I had a bit of foldover elastic I bought in Manchester last year, enough to try out a couple of pairs. Since the first one went well, I ordered a bunch (above, except the top grey) from B,Wear in Sweden – I’m not sure what possessed me since I’m not normally a huge polkadot fan, but it works ok with the pattern, so no harm.

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The pattern for each style is pretty simple (front, back, gusset, and three elastic pieces), and the instructions cover each type of elastic very clearly. The first couple of pairs, I pinned like crazy and basted to get the first side of the elastic attached, but I got more confident later in using a few anchor pins and easing the elastic between them.

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I liked both styles but the hipster doesn’t hit at the ideal height for me – very wearable but not the GOAT. The high-waisted style benefits from the overlap on the leg elastic to keep it from being very frumpy…I think, and they are extremely comfortable and good to wear. Both pairs stayed put very well, sat comfortably, and generally didn’t come to mind during the day any more than knickers should.

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Hipster style – the one on the right is a great bamboo spandex that I like way better as knickers
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High-waisted, leftovers from my Moneta dress. I’m not ironing pants, even for you guys.

They don’t photograph super well, but the elastic sits smoothly when they’re on. I would say that it’s not a VPL-free style at all, so I’ll be choosing them when that’s not an issue.

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Will I make them again? For sure – it’s a good way to use up soft knits, and I’m happy with the result. I can see this being the kind of item that seems pointless to sew – it’s not much cheaper to buy foldover elastic than to buy a Marks & Spencer multipack of pants, even if you pretend your time is free – but for me, clocking up more sewing time on a small project that benefits from some precision is a good thing right now. I have time, and this is a pretty foolproof, quick project whenever there’s leftover fabric needing a purpose.

3/9 down for 2018MakeNine

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