“Retro Forward” Burda Style: Honeycomb Duck Odeeh Pants

“Oh Honeybee, honeybee, you’re so sweet, always making something good to eat.”  As a little girl with a quick mind, I grew up memorizing classic rhymes and diddles…and this one is still stuck in my head.  The honey bee nursery rhyme couldn’t be more appropriate than now with these Burda Style flashback styled pants made from cotton ducking fabric, printed in a geometrically boxed design reminding me of a honey comb.


This is my first foray into the Burda Style “Designer patterns”, found as a special bonus in their monthly magazine issues.  As far as I know these patterns (including the one for these pants) are only in the magazines – I have not yet found them on the online Burda Style store.  If you’d like to see and read a bit more about the designers behind the Odeeh line visit their page here.

THE FACTS: Paris Fashion Week - Präsentation von Odeeh SS 2013       

FABRIC:  100% cotton duck for the pants with a remnant from my stash of 100% cotton knit for the waistband

NOTIONS:  I only used the thread and bias tapes from on hand.

PATTERN:  Burda Style pattern #127, from the 05/2015 magazine

THE INSIDES:  All raw edges are individually encased in thin bias bindings.

100_5488-compTIME TO COMPLETE:  One day’s worth of only 5 hours on June 25, 2015. 

TOTAL COST:  The fabric was bought on deep discount at Hancock Fabrics for only $3.00 a yard and knit was on hand (free), so my total was only $7.50 (with ½ yard still left over).

As much as I love vintage and my 1940’s pants, I had a hankering for more pants but one’s that were modern, yet fun, and comfy.  These pants aren’t probably the most complimentary being more like modern harem or parachute pants, I’ll admit, but they do fit the trio of ‘needs’ mentioned in the previous sentence.  Hey, I figure there’s a certain “self-assurance” that can fill in and make any outfit look like a million on oneself…that’s what I was feelin’ here.


I noticed on the model that the fit of the Odeeh pants looked generous, but I got out the pattern pieces I used for my 1940’s jeans to refer to and check against to estimate the fit.  Yes – the Odeeh pants do have a generous behind and overly large hips with wide legs.  I made the pants as-is with no “big-bootie-adjustment” or such, and only graded in between sizes.  After they were finished, I ended up taking in an extra 5/8 inch (or slightly more) on each side from the hips down so I really could have made all one size.

Oh how I do love some nice roomy pockets!  The pocket placement and the front pleats near them remind me very much of both menswear as well as another pattern, Simplicity 1887, year 2012, no offense meant to the designer.


After the fact of being done and worn several times, I happened to notice a small ‘mistake’ I’d made to the pants.  One of the front pleats is directed the wrong way.  Not that this is any big deal in the least, it’s actually rather funny and makes me shake my head at myself.  No one will notice, but I know.  It helps me realize I should let go of my self-imposed aim for ‘perfection’ in my sewing and just enjoy a garment done to the best of my ability.

The easy-on waistband makes these pants so nice!  It’s is nice to forgo a zipper every so often, even though inserting them is one of my favorite things to do (figure that out).  The wide elastic is great and doesn’t roll like smaller widths of elastic.  Plus, it stretches on but doesn’t get bulky and gathered when worn like regular casing waists.  The white cotton knit is part of the seeming never ending leftovers from my 1947 Doris Day blouse.  Some fabrics keep going and going like a handy “Ever Ready Energizer Bunny”.  Leftovers of the honeycomb ducking fabric from my pants are going to be for another project, an English late 60’s summer play set.

I do not think a longer top works well on me with the pants’ style anyway, so I feel a short crop top, tie top, or a tucked in top are my best pairing options.  My favorite modern yet throwback way to style it is wear a cropped tank, wedge sandals and a ponytail – easy!  However, as you see in this post, I wore my pants with a favorite RTW (not ‘me-made’) blouse which was tied off in front.

parachute pants adMy pants and the way I styled them makes me think of the styles from the late 1980’s and early 1990’s.  Think of Keds –an all-American classic shoe – and “Hammer” pants and crazy hair and dressing with a bold flair that may or may not include neon.  Though not as extreme and classy as a pair of Jim Cavaricci bottoms, these pants do have a certain emphasis on flaring at the hips with a higher waist, a pleated front, gentle taper down from the knee, and bootie exaggeration.  My turned up pants hems not only show off my seams but also how I left the zippers open on my sneakers with the tongue out just like the trend pioneered by Run DMC, Adidas Superstars.  I was trying to channel the styles from one of my favorite shows, “Fresh Prince of Bel-Air” but I feel like this outfit might fit in on “A Different World” as well.  Gosh, it’s weird to have the ‘80s technically be ‘vintage’ now that it’s over 25 years ago.100_5462-comp

Besides trying a new style, anything that remotely has to do with bees and honey are of interest to me and my hubby, who grew up with his parents raising the little flower pollinators.  It’s funny how our minds connect certain things together in unique ways…such as me associating a childhood nursery rhyme, an certain shape, a sewing project, a city mural, and a the 1980’s all with the same one item…a handmade pair of pants!  All I can say is that it’s awesome to be able to make one’s own clothes.

3 thoughts on ““Retro Forward” Burda Style: Honeycomb Duck Odeeh Pants

  1. You *like* putting in zippers?!? Closures are my bete noir. On the other hand, I enjoy hand doing hems and the like, and most people I know hate that, so I guess we each have our pet things!


    • Yeah, I do get great satisfaction after putting in a nice zipper placket and feel sick at the thought of a hand done hem…can’t totally explain it. I think most of us sewers have our pet peeves but we also have individual techniques that let our personal talents shine!


  2. Pingback: A Very Mod British Summer Sun Suit | Seam Racer

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