The Energy pattern range – Violet leggings.

A global pandemic definitely makes you view life through a different lens! Despite the warning signs on the news, it was such a jolt to go into the first lock down. I felt it was like watching an accident happen. Knowing there was nothing you could do about it, then trying to pick up the pieces and create some kind of normality. While still watching the ongoing horror unfold all around.

Early on I knew I needed to implement some strategies to stay positive and not get ground down by a situation that was out of my hands. I feel lucky to be a naturally grounded and practical person, but that doesn’t necessarily exempt me from the impact of such global distress. There was so little we could do in terms of going out. I knew it would have been very easy to get into a sedentary, comfort eating way of living. That would have been an added negative for me. I countered this with creating a simple exercise plan.

As a child I loathed P.E, I was uncoordinated, slow and unpopular, always the last one picked for the team in netball! Through adult life I have always tried to do some sort of physical exercise. Initially taking up aerobics after leaving college and realising my student lifestyle of chip shop dinners, smoking and pints of cider had added inches to my waistline, pounds to the scale and left me breathless easily.

Violet leggings pattern from Bobbins and Buttons

I started running around 2000 when I finally gave up smoking. Switching something bad for something good felt great. This had such a dramatic impact on me. I not only lost weight but I gained energy. I was alive in the morning instead of foggy until my first coffee. My mood was always upbeat and positive. I’ve never really tried to achieve any major goals in running or other exercise because I know the benefits and that will always push me to keep going. I like to keep exercise to something I don’t need to think too hard about.

During lock-down I increased my running from once or twice a week to two or three times a week. Generally, especially in the cooler months I wear leggings to run in. Over the years I have struggled to find the right combination of comfort and fit. I splashed out on some lovely designer leggings thinking that being a top brand they would have invested in the design and performance element. Yet these are probably my worst pair, they have a lovely integrated waistband, giving them a streamlined look. However it just rolls down while running. Instead of being in the flow of exercise I get disturbed by stopping to sort my clothing out!

Violet leggings pattern from Bobbins and Buttons

Naturally this was a design challenge that I needed to take on. I started work on what I wanted to be my ultimate running leggings.

Violet leggings pattern from Bobbins and Buttons

The Violet leggings have a deep high waistband. I have made a few pairs now while testing the pattern and I am very happy that the waistband stays put. An added bonus of the high waistband is that it creates a pleasing flat tummy too! Something mentioned by several of the pattern testers.

Violet leggings pattern from Bobbins and Buttons

There are two sizes of optional pockets for the back of the waistband. One is larger sized so you can fit your phone in. The other is smaller to carry keys in.

Violet leggings pattern from Bobbins and Buttons

The legs can be made plain or with a stripe panel that runs down the side and across the back. The stripe offers another option for a pocket.

Both styles are very quick and simple to make. The options in the pattern mean you could whip up a plain, no pocket pair in a very short space of time. While the panelled and pocket styling might take a bit longer it can cater for your sporting needs and wants.

Sustainability is now one of the key focuses of my business, providing extra questions when I design. It has always been important that my pattern range is versatile and timeless enough to last. The Violet leggings can easily translate to everyday wear. A plain cotton/elastane pair teamed with a Jayne or Emily dress is a great everyday wardrobe solution. The panelled pair allows you to use up smaller pieces that might be left over from another project too.

Polyester and nylon fabrics are probably among some of the worst offenders in terms of environmental impact, however there is not much on offer that is a suitable substitute for sportswear. I was very happy to find a selection of sportswear fabric made from recycled polyester and nylon created from landfill waste. I have added a selection of these fabrics to my online shop.

I hope you enjoy the new pattern. I would to hear how you get on, if you would like to share your makes on social media, please don’t forget to tag me so I can find you. #bobbinsnbuttons #violetleggings #violetpattern

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Julia Claridge

I was about 6 or 7 years old when I had my first go on a sewing machine, it was an old hand crank machine that my mum used with her patients, she was an occupational therapist. I still vividly remember watching with amazement as the tiny perfectly formed stitches were created as I turned the handle. I Grew up in the 70’s and 80’s when buying clothes was less affordable and dressmaking was an answer to updating your wardrobe more regularly. My own mother was a talented dressmaker who made most of my clothes and my sisters clothes as well as a many for herself. I soon got involved with making my clothes, I loved the whole experience of picking out fabrics, trims and a pattern to create a new outfit, then going home to make a new garment or outfit. When it came to leaving school I visited a careers advisor who asked what I wanted to do next. My answer was ..Sew! Read more...

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