The answer for me was shorts. Yes, shorts. Less investment of material, more casual in feel and some how psychologically less daunting.
I bought Simplicity 2700 from the Simplicity Amazing fit collection. I decided I liked the waist band and the overall cut of the pants. The directions are detailed and very simple. The idea is to first make sure you are cutting the appropriate pattern pieces for your figure type (straight, average, curvy) based on the overall crotch length, back crotch length and hip measurement. After taking all the measurements I decided to cut the size 10 average. The pattern purposely leaves 1" seams on the sides and center back waist to adjust the fit of the waist after the pants are basted together to check the fit at the hip.
I would up having to use all but 5/8" of the 1" seam allowance at the sides and back to make the waist fit. I am pretty straight up and down with little waist indentation because I am very short in the body.
The directions are clear, the sewing very straight forward and I found the pants super easy to put together. And how did they wind up? Here are the pictures! I used a non-stretch dark blue denim I found at JoAnn Fabrics and the pocket lining is a 100% cotton gingham also purchased at JoAnn. I washed both fabrics 3 times in water hotter than they will ever see again and dried them both on high as well to avoid any shrinkage once I launder the finished shorts. I hate jeans with spandex in the them. They seem like such a good idea but I always find they bag, sag and droop by the end of the day. Hate that.
Finished before hemming
Detail of front
Silver buttons from my stash
I topped stitch with gold thread meant for jeans top stitching.
I used this great blue and red gingham check for the pocket bags and waistband linings.
These fit perfectly with no gaping at the waistband, no bag or pull at the seat or across the front at the fly. They are easy to move and sit in. I love them. This pattern is definitely a keeper and worth doing up as long pants in a better fabric.