The Coolest Culottes

One of the more rewarding things about this new sewing endeavor is the ability to build my wardrobe to be exactly what I want. It has pushed me to try new styles that I wouldn’t normally buy from a store. These culottes, for instance, aren’t probably something that I would’ve grabbed from the rack. To be fair though, I doubt store-bought culottes  are made with the most gorgeous sunset-over-the-mountains purple, soft-handed linen that I used to construct mine.  (Seriously, the color makes me want to cry is so beautiful.) Also, the back invisible zipper on the store-bought pair probably wouldn’t be the unlikely cobalt blue that I chose for mine and the invisible zipper on the RTW pair probably would’ve been just that: invisible.

Cobalt zipper! I couldn’t resist.

This was my first invisible zipper and one that I installed using a regular zipper foot so there a couple spots where the cobalt peeks out. While I strive for perfection with all my sewing projects, I’ve come to the more realistic realization that those imperfections are what make them my culottes. That, and my kid needed a snack and help looking for her Peter Pan Lego, so the imperfect, nearly invisible zipper remains as is. Not 100% perfect, but 100% functional.

Happy as a clam in my new culottes.

As I mentioned, I used a watercolor linen from Purl Soho and the culottes turned out exactly as I envisioned them.  The linen has just enough drape to hang well, but also works in concert with the pattern’s deep box pleats to give the skirt a full and billowy silhouette. The skirt’s full silhouette is flatteringly complimented by its tapering  to a slender high-waist band. The cherry on top are the deep pockets which add style and functionality.



He likes to pose…..with his pink frying pan.

I thought that this pattern was methodically constructed and it was explained well through the tutorial. Helen’s illustrations were clear and her directions were concise which is the reason that I got these cut and assembled in about two hours. They were a quick sew and I ended up grading between two sizes based on her direction and the fit is great! They’re very comfortable and such a new and fun staple to my summer wardrobe…..and fall wardrobe now that I’m thinking how cute they’ll look with my Hunter boots! Boom!

This was a really fun project because I loved watching “the vision” materialize (pun intended) into “the reality”. I had been wanting this purple linen for a while but didn’t have a project in mind until I saw these culottes on Instagram, at which point I got the green light on the purple material. When I went to go order it, though, I was torn between this color and the Lilac Bark so I did the financially responsible thing and bought both…..and two other fabrics….and a fat quarter bundle of their glittery linen. I have no control when it comes to stash building. No. Control. My aunt has always told me that “having fabric is like having money in the bank” and I couldn’t agree more. My husband is, unfortunately, less inclined towards that pitch but knows the battles he can’t win. Muah!

To wrap up, I would recommend this pattern. It’s a fun sew and is unlike anything that I have in my wardrobe. You can get the pattern here.




  1. Beautiful Leslie! I love watching you enjoy your passion. You are so talented. Oh and I am also enjoying the chance to see the sweet faces of my niece and nephew.


  2. Yay!!!! Thanks so much for making the pattern and for your kind words. I am in love with that purple colour too, it is SO dreamy! I am also really excited about pairing my culottes with my rainboots too! I have plans for some lightweight wool ones that will be so much fun to style come fall. Great tip from your aunt, I will have to keep that in mind when I go overboard on fabrics. It is just too stressful to choose, so I get them all 🙂 Thanks again and congrats on your first invisible zip!


  3. I absolutely love your fabric choice! Not just for the culottes, but basically always – but you already know that… 😉 Maybe I should make a short pair of culottes, too!


  4. I’ve been terrible about coming to read your blog — what was I thinking?! I love your posts! I just had to comment on this one first because I LOVE these culottes on you! I love the color, the fabric, the pleats, everything!!!


  5. Those look marvelous – I’m so impressed by your daring to wear purple on the bottom. I’m too boring! Do you find that the watercolour linen wrinkles like crazy? Or does it work since the culottes have such great volume? I have a nice neutral chambray coming my way next week for this same pattern. Thanks for sharing yours!


    1. Thank you, Laura! I’m glad that you like them! Admittedly, yes, the linen does wrinkle quite a bit but the volume of the culottes does help to hide some it. The linen does iron out really nicely though. I would recommend the watercolor linen from Purl Soho because of the gorgeous color palatte, but also because it’s a little finer than some other linens and has some nice drape! I think your chambray will be lovely!


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