Cornelius cycling breeches: Designer Notes

When I was a child my dad would tell me stories about hiking in the mountains, something magical for a kid living in The Netherlands. He had a suitcase with his mountaineering things in it, and part of that were some ‘knickerbockers’, baggy trousers that reached down to your calves.

When I moved to the USA in my thirties and started hiking myself, I would often reflect on those talks and felt sad that I didn’t inherit those knickerbockers. Then when I discovered sewing, I decided I would make myself a pair, but no good patterns presented themselves.

Then someone on the Freesewing discord server posted a link to The ‘Keystone’ Systems, Practical methods of cutting, from around the turn of the century. This contained a drafting system for ‘Cycling Breeches’, which seemed to be close to what my father used to wear, and could be translated into a Freesewing pattern. A project was born, and I’m happy to be able to present the results to you.

These are not designed as hiking breeches, but cycling breeches. That’s close enough for me. They work for either activity, and have many more uses.