Thursday, 11 June 2015

Rockbuex // Experimental trousers

Cannot. Stop. Wearing. The Rockbuex.

The what?

Well, glad you asked!  Let me show you...

(You might want to put your sunglasses on. I inadvertently captured the full force of the sun in these pictures!)

So, the Rockbuex. A pattern by German blogger schneidermeistern, available in English on Kollabora where it is enticingly-named "Experimental Pants".  Because, as you can no doubt tell, it's not ein Rock - a skirt - but something closely resembling a pair of trousers.  Trousers with a veeeeeeerrrrrrrrrrrry dropped crotch. Although I suppose you could look at it the other way, too, if you wanted: as a skirt that happens to be closed at the bottom, with ankle holes.

But let's be straightforward here. What it is, is extreme harem pants. And I really, really like how that fact covers all sorts of style bases - from high fashion harems to festival-gear sarouels, and all the faux-maxi-skirt mum-clothes in between.

I first became aware of this particular pattern when I saw it on the ever-stylish Ute, but this wasn't the first time I'd considered the appeal of this type of garment. When Oonaballoona posted her romper-with-room tutorial last year I was sorely tempted to give it a go then - but stalled at choosing an appropriate fabric and promptly forgot all about it.

Fortunately, by the time the same temptation arose this spring, that little issue had resolved itself.  On my visit to Paris in January I had picked up this beautiful blue silk at the rather bargainous price of 8 euros a metre. Even with a 3-metre minimum purchase, it was worth jumping on!  It's fairly roughly textured, not smooth - I know very little about the proper terms for these things but I think it's what's called a washed silk?? (Please correct me if you know better!)  Anyway, whatever it is, I had to have it, even though I had no idea what I was going to do with it. The only thing I did know was that I wanted as much of it as possible next to my skin at all times.

Megan Nielsen's Tania culottes were my default plan for a long while - especially when saw her boxier midi-length version - but I hesitated over the relatively high waistband. While I love how that can look, I know that I just don't wear high waists regularly, and certainly not with the comfort level I wanted for my special fabric. And I'm glad I waited, because the Rockbuex hits the exact spot I was aiming for. Totally, utterly comfortable, while giving off a wonderful vibe of laid-back chic - and laid-back chic is absolutely how I roll at the moment.

In terms of construction, this pattern is extremely straightforward. The 'skirt' has front and back darts if you're using a woven fabric, to help it fall more smoothly, which I think it does. It has pockets (insert obligatory pocket YAY here) and, as written, includes ribbing at the waistband and ankle cuffs. I made a self-fabric waistband instead because I wanted it to match, with 5cm elastic inserted and then topstitched in the same way as the Hudson pants (I didn't get any close ups but you can see it in the photos above). At the ankles, I shamelessly copied Ute by adding a hem allowance and creating a little (+/- 5cm) pleat to draw in the 'cuff'. This keeps things nice and airy - though the silk is warmer to wear than I thought it would be, so this definitely isn't a high-summer garment. (Not that that'll be much of an issue in Belgium...)

In fact, to my mind, the Rockbuex is absolutely ideal winter wear - and not just because it makes a maxi skirt out of a pair of trousers. While I was contemplating the cuffs, and mulling over fabric choices, it occurred to me that one could make some of these in fleece for lounging on cold evenings, and doesn't that sound appealing, curled up on the sofa inside your nice cosy trouser/skirt thing? Well, from that vision it was a mere mental hop, skip and jump to the thought that, ok, ankle cuffs are good enough, but you know what? You could just go the whole hog and attach a pair of slipper socks instead. Seriously. You're not tempted? :-)

Anyway. I still have just over a metre of the silk left. I'm thinking of making an Ilsley skirt for maximum silk-wearing over the summer. After I've crawled out of the swimsuit vortex I've been sucked into over the last couple of weeks - I literally cannot think about anything else. Do you get like that too?? It's like my obsession with finally making a well-fitting bikini is demanding to be unleashed and, finally, completed - or else it'll destroy my ability to create anything, ever again. (I may be taking it a bit too seriously).

Rockbuex: Cat Approved.


  1. These look great on you! Effortlessly chic for the win! Thanks so much for the tip that they are available in English. I loved them when I saw them on Ute's feed but figured it would be too annoying to figure out in German. Definitely happening!

  2. Oh they look fab! I also fell in love with them on Ute, but thought "yeah, but I'm not Ute!". But you're not Ute either and look at you! Uber chic... which feels a weird thing to say about what my hubby would call adult diapers. I know, he's all class, and no taste :)

  3. They're a statement piece indeed! Lovely in the silk. Man repelling for certain, but who gives a rats?

  4. Love them!! Very tempted! Jen

  5. Fabulous! You look so comfy and stylish, and they must be so luxurious to wear! That silk is amazing!

  6. Gabrielle StanleyJune 15, 2015 12:35 pm

    The fabric is silk noil. A good alternative to linen, I think.

  7. Those are fabulous! I love them!!! I am really sorry I missed these! The silk is divine and the Rockbüx the perfect pattern to have as much fabric next to your skin as possible! ;) And now you will have to make a version with added socks, I absolutely want to see that!


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