Zappa Pants Faux Leather and Lace-Up Hack!

flares hack lace up leather mod modification pants zappa

Hello sewing enthusiasts!  I’m Chris and I’m super excited to be bringing you my first guest blog post for George and Ginger Pattern Co.  My thanks to Kristi for this opportunity to share my Zappa Pants Lace-Up Hack.  You can follow me and my other creations on my blog at http://sewjourns.com/ and on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/sewjourns/.

Sewing has many challenges and rewards and one of my favorite things that I am learning is to be able to take a well-drafted and well-loved pattern and hack or modify it to “make it my own”, i.e., to be inspired by the pattern and to be able to create something with a personal touch. 

Today we will be adding a lace-up effect to the side seams and the front rise of the Zappa Pants Pattern.  You can purchase the Zappa Pants Pattern Here. (affiliate link)

Here is a sneak peak of the final look!

SUPPLIES NEEDED:

  • Zappa Pants Pattern, Flared Option
  • Main fabric, check the fabric requirements in the pattern tutorial for your size
  • Additional fabric for the side and faux fly inserts (approximately ¼ yard)
  • Interfacing (optional)
  • Temporary quilt basting spray or Wash Away Wondertape (optional)
  • ¼-inch Eyelets, Approx. 52
  • 2 pieces of 106 inches of lacing for side panels
  • I piece 36 inches of lacing for the faux fly

CONSTRUCTION:

 Be sure to read through the entire tutorial before you begin to sew!

BEFORE CUTTING YOUR FABRIC, you will need to modify the front side panel pattern piece. We will be eliminating the front pockets but don’t worry, there are optional back pockets to hold your cell phone and/or keys and ID.

  1. Align the pocket lining pattern piece to the back of the side panel piece and then line up the pocket piece to the bottom of the lining, and tape into place. The top piece will now extend up past the front panel as if you had created the pocket. You will now use this front panel piece to cut out your fabric. 
  2. You are now ready to cut out your pattern pieces using the front panel piece you just created.

You will NOT need the faux fly piece so put it aside. Later we will be creating a lace-up faux fly.

For my Zappa Pants hack I am adding a lace overlay to the front triangle inserts as well as to the side panel inserts that we will be creating.  

  1. To overlay the triangle inserts, use temporary quilt basting spray to hold the lace panel to the main fabric. Or you may use pins, clips or Wondertape. Baste the optional lace overlay to the triangle inserts.

  1. Continue to construct the pants as per the tutorial up to page 22 BUT DO NOT construct the faux fly piece, you will just be sewing the front crotch curve without the faux fly piece.

At this point you will now have the front of the pants sewn together at the front curve and the back at the back curve and the side seams.  DO NOT sew the inseam, leave that open.  It will make it much easier to construct the side lace-up panels.

We will be adding a faux lace-up side panel from the top of the pants to just below the top of the triangle inserts on the front.

Constructing the lace-up side panel:

  1. From the same fabric you used for the triangle inserts, cut a rectangle 4.5 inches wide and 20 inches long. I am using the lace only here.
  2. Taper the last 2 inches at the bottom with a slight curve making the bottom 2 inches wide.

  1. From the main fabric cut 2 pieces 2.5 X 20 inches long.
  2. Fold the long sides in half WST and press.

Pin or clip the folded over strips, raw edges together, to the wrong side of the lace panel, making sure you curve the strips to match the curve at the tapered end.  Serge the strips on using a ¼-inch seam allowance.

Flip the entire piece over and fold the side strips to enclose the serged seam and press.  

Binding the tapered end of the lace-up panel:

  1. Cut a piece for the binding from the main fabric 1.5 by 3.5 inches . Pin or clip the binding piece wrong side of the binding to the right side of the panel. Sew using a ¼-inch seam allowance. The binding will extend past the edges of the panel.  Fold the sides in and then fold the binding to the back enclosing the seam.  Hold in place with Wondertape and sew by stitching in the ditch or close to it from the right side.
  2. Mark the center of the top and bottom of the panel with a clip.
  3. On the side seam of the pants, measure down from the top of the pants 18 inches and place a pin.

  1. Center the panel over the side seam with the binded tapered edge extending ½-inch below the pin. The panel will extend over the top of the pants. We will be trimming that later.
  2. Remove the bottom pin.
  3. Pin the panel in place all along the outside edge and top and bottom. Make sure you are pinning the panel only through one layer and not accidentally through to the other leg underneath.

Helpful hint:  Place a quilting ruler behind and under the pants so when you pin the panel in place you will not pin it to the fabric underneath. 

  1. Sew the panel to the pants by topstitching at 1/8-inch seam along the outside edge only and around the bottom and the top.
  2. Trim the top of the panel to the shape of the top of the pants. You have now created the faux lace-up panel. We will attach the eyelets and lace-up ties later.

Repeat the steps for the panel for the other side!

Create the Faux Fly Lace-Up Panel

  1. From the same fabric you used to create the side panel (mine is lace) cut a piece 3.5 by 6 inches and taper the bottom edges like we did on the side panel.
  2. For the side strips cut 2 pieces 2. 5 X 6 inches and fold WST and press.

  1. Serge or sew the same way you did with the side panel, flip and press enclosing the seam.
  2. For the bottom binding cut a strip 2.5 x 1.5 inches and attach it the same way as we did on the side panel.
  3. Measure down the front center seam 5 inches and insert a pin.
  4. Center the faux fly panel over the center front crotch seam ending ½-inch below the pin. It will extend over the top. We will trim this later.  Remove the bottom pin. Pin all around the outside edges to hold the panel in place.
  5. Top stitch the faux fly panel to the pants using 1/8-inch seam on the outside edge like we did on the side panel.
  6. Trim the faux fly panel flush with the contour of the top of the pants.

Serge or Sew the pants inseam as in the Zappa Pants tutorial on page 23.   

Hem the pants and attach the waistband as in the Zappa Pants tutorial on page 32.

Attaching the eyelets to the side panels:

The eyelets will now get attached to the strip you created on the side panels and faux fly panel. 

  1. Starting ½-inch down from the waistband make a mark in the center on each side of the strips on the side panel.
  2. Measure from the center of the first eyelet down 1.5 inches and mark with chalk or fabric marking pen.
  3. Continue marking 1.5 inches from the center of the mark down. You will use 11 eyelets on each side of the panel (22 total eyelets for EACH side of the pants).
  4. Attach the eyelets TO THE SIDE STRIP ONLY being careful not to attach them to the lace panel and/or the pants.
  5. Do the same on the other side.

  1. Using pre-made ties or ribbon (or create ties out of your main fabric), cut 2 pieces 106 inches long each.
  2. Lace the ties through the eyelets starting at the top and ending at the bottom on the side panels. Tie into a knot or bow.

Attaching the eyelets to the faux fly panel:

  1. Attach 4 eyelets, evenly spaced, to each side of the faux fly panel in the same manner as the side panels being careful to only attach them to the side strips and not through the main fabric.
  2. Using pre-made ties or ribbon (or create ties out of your main fabric), cut 1 piece 36 inches long.
  3. Lace up the faux fly panel from the bottom to the top at the waistband (opposite from what we did on the side panels).

Congratulations! You have now just created your own Zappa Faux Leather Lace-Up Pants!  Wear them proudly!  Great work!. 

I would LOVE to see your version so please share your make in the George and Ginger FB Group page and tag me Chris M Shapiro or on Instagram @sewjourns. 


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  • Deborah Devine on

    Your directions were amazing. The photos and directions would be helpful to seamstresses at any experience level! Thanks


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