Sunday, 29 September 2013

Pants Block 5 - Pattern Comparisons and Reference List

Dear Readers,

Now that I have made my own pants block apart from adding my own modifications I can use it to see if my existing patterns will fit.

I have been comparing my pants block to three cargo pants patterns that I own to see what alterations I have to make so I can figure out which one to choose.

Speaking of comparisons I have the meerkat jingle running through my head. If this eccentric character has not invaded your country yet see here No affiliation etc..

I have broken my three season fabric fast and bought this Japanese cotton from Spotlight for some casual cargos. It is just the right weight.

Here are the three patterns, compared.

Butterick 5504 This is a Connie Crawford pattern, nicely drafted but I can now see why the back never felt right even though the crotch length was almost the same and the width of the leg overwhelmed me.

The second is an oldie Vogue 7912 that I had made up long before the internet gave so much to my sewing. I had already made an adjustment to lengthen the back crotch curve but now I would need more.

The third is New Look 6251 that has nice details. I have never made it up. I really would have been in trouble with the back crotch but the front is pretty much perfect. I think I will be using this one.

In spite of what I said in a previous post about not wanting to sew pants the enthusiasm has returned. The pants journey has been worth it for a body that varies from the out-of-the-packet norm. I can feel a dress block coming and one day a jacket block..

Here is a list of books and magazine articles that are helpful when figuring out how to fit pants.

Pattern Cutting by Dennic Chunman Lo.
Fast Fit by Sandra Betzina.
Pants for Any Body by Patti Palmer and Susan Pletsch (OOP but still available on Amazon)

Threads Magazine January 2008 no 134
The Best Fitting Pants Ever by Claudette Grant which mentions three different drafts for three different 'seats' and also the concept of shifting the hips.

Threads Magazine May 2009 no 142
Special Fitting Issue
Slash and Pivot for Bottoms by Kathleen Cheetham

Threads Magazine December 1989/January1990 no no26
Copy The Clothes You Love by Jann Jasper

Threads Magazine February/March 2003 no 105
Restyling Pants by Injoo Kim

Threads Magazine June/July 2005 no 119
To fit Pants, Start at the Waist by Joyce Murphy

Threads Magazine December 2005/January 2006 no 122
Adjusting Pants from Waist to Seat by Joyce Murphy

Threads Magazine October/November 2008 no 139
For a Personalized Fit Grade It - Resize your patterns to make perfect pants by Joyce Murphy

Threads Magazine January 2007 no 128
The Seat of The Pants by Kathleen Cheetham.

I love those old Threads magazines. They seemed to pack so much information and creativity per issue back then. Fabulous stuff. One of these days I will buy it all on disk.

So that's it, the end of the series but by no means the end of the journey. I hope that some of it was helpful.

Happy sewing,



  1. Just love your new fabric...will be beautiful in cropped pants. Your confidence level must be really high with your new sloper!

  2. Thanks Coco. If the cargos work I may become a pants addict. You may have noticed I never made too many pants in the past ..

  3. Good luck - I find Burda pants are closest to my block, while Vogue seem like they come from you another planet. Love that painting, so Sydney. Who painted it?

    1. Thanks Gail. Burda is close, Vogue is for a straight up and down body with a regular crotch depth, New Look is somewhere in between. Kwik Sew comes closest for the sway back.
      The painting is by Sydney artist Sarina.

  4. Your new fabric will look fantastic with your TNT pants pattern and it was very interesting seeing the pattern comparisons. Thank you for the detailed list of references.

  5. Great fabric choice! I find making pants to be intimidating for some reason, despite the fact that people often say it is as easy as sewing two sleeves together. I think getting the right fit is what is so challenging (and intimidating!) -- so great to see your process with the block and the pattern comparisons. I also love that painting!

  6. Thanks ladies.
    Jean, get hold of any of the Palmer/Pletsch books on pants fitting. They make it all start to make sense.