Pants Using One Pattern Piece

originally published10/13/11


I desire to totally disassociate today’s post with the previous one, if possible.  My point today is:

why would this type this pattern not be my first choice when sewing my own clothing?

Why would someone heap praise upon a pattern; heap praise upon a designer and then completely reverse direction; completely disavow what was previously heralded as the promised land (er pants wise). Well lets think it through…


First my personal fit preference is:  Semi-Fitted.  I like clothing that skims the lumps and bumps. I like clothing that conceals all, reveals nothing but tantalizes the viewer with the suggestion of a figure… the suggestion of form…. the suggestion of beauty, loveliness, sexiness…


Too much fabric, as with loosely fitted garments, not only does not achieve my desired semi-fit, but often adds visual pounds to the figure. And that’s what happens to me with this pant. I look like I’ve gained 20 pounds overnight.



Mind you, I will chose the one-piece pant pattern when

  • I need pants NOW. I can actually cut and sew a shorts version of this pattern in less than an hour. These are not fabulous shorts, but they will do for the immediate occasion.
  • I want to make pants of a very RAVELY fabric. The fewer pieces that need to be handled, the more likely it is I can end up with a usable and probably fitting garment.
    • BTW with shorts, I’m likely to cover up over half the viewable portion of garment (i.e. the shorts.) Yep, I’m too heavy to wear short shorts, but I don’t care during triple digit summer highs. So a quick pair of shorts are perfect for a one pattern piece pant.
  • I’m using an extremely-drapey, astonishingly-drapey fabric. Oh yeah, they’re out there. Fabrics that cling to the body. Fabrics that need lots and lots of ease to look their best.



Today’s version was constructed from a very soft cotton.  For a cotton it does have an amazing drape as reflected in the front and side views.  Unfortunately the back view has developed the infamous puddling between knee and waist suggesting too much ease in that area.  I’m not sure if this a fabric issue or a fit issue.  The previous versions both used more substantial fabrics.  They also added 40 visual pounds instead of 20. But they didn’t suffer with the droopy drawers look. Their fabrics didn’t collapse into folds but stanchly stood in place. Of course, there is that little difference in distribution of the crotch length. Because the pattern is drafted for more of a soft, flowing look, I’ll add belt looks and pull the back up into place; and probably redistribute some of those gathers.When making up this pattern, I need to add belt loops and a belt every time.  I”ll always be conscience that the draft and this pant in particular does not meet my ideal, my preferred shape.


So why don’t I just ditch this pattern and go for something else, like my Burda 143s?


Well I do find this type pattern handy for the previously stated uses.  Also I’m contemplating and will be adapting the pattern with other ideas. The belt loops and belt looks like a permanent change.  I kept the length as calculated throughout the fitting process.  I used the measurements of myself in my flats, which is the most likely shoe wear for me.  I personally prefer a pant which skims about 1/4″ above the floor.  I’ll be adding to the length about an inch because that’s my preferred length. This is an each-to-his-own decision.  The calculated length is not unattractive. It just not me. Over all my conclusion is, this is not a pattern that will flatter me without any thought. It’s not like the 143’s, with their back crotch 3″ longer than the front,  that have looked good regardless of the fabric I’ve selected.   BUT using the right fabrics it can be a fabulous garment EVEN for me.  I’ll keep this pattern and  keep experimenting with this draft.  It is, after all is said and done, an ingenious idea.  An idea that deserves contemplation and further development/usage.