sdBev's Pants!

Tummy Wedge

Posted on: March 4, 2013

Because I was asked, I’m posting a picture of the tummy wedge I applied to my pattern:

I outlined the wedge in a bright blue, royal I think. I noted at the top that the wedge is 3/8″ wide.  This time I placed the wedge at an angle close to the zipper but it could have been placed in the same orientation and location as the straight of grain.  I had in mind avoiding any affect on the grain for most of the pattern. In retrospect, that may have been a total waste of effort. So, I placed the wedge next to the zipper flap and then swung it open towards the zipper flap. I trued the waistline, which was very easy to do because of the easy, gentle waistline curve. Next I folded the pattern along the center front seam line and discovered that my flap was going to dip down somewhat.  Easy fix, says I.  I add a scrap of tissue to the top of the zipper flap, folded it back along the seam line, again. Then I trimmed the excess above the pattern waistline.  Hope that makes sense. There really are times when a video would be much more explanatory even without a single word.

One further note, I prefer to use 1/4 and  3/8″ seam allowances. I use the 5/8 or larger SA only when fitting a new pattern from an unfamiliar or unreliable source. For example, I add 3/8″ to Ottobre, Burda, Trudy Jansen and Joyce Simmons Miller patterns. I have a new pattern, the Thrulow pants. This is an unfamiliar source and I will use a 5/8″ SA.  I avoid the Big 4 patterns, but if I do make a Vogue, Butterick or from the other house (Simplicity, New Look) I add at least  5/8″ and often a full 1″ to the side seam allowances.  That’s because I hate to do muslins and big seam allowances give me the flexibility to at least make a wearable item. But at the same time a wide seam allowance presents its own problems and disadvantages.  For example a wide seam allowance along the crotch will not allow the crotch to drop into place. Along any curve with a 5/8″ SA, I have to do lots of clipping and pressing (which usually includes singed fingers). If at all possible, I prefer to work with the narrower seam allowance because they conform to curves so much more easily. Point of all this, is when you look at the light green and light blue dashes, they look to be in the wrong place. They are right for me but I entirely acknowledge that you should do what works best for your sewing. If that means using a 5/8″ SA, by all means ignore my SA markings; ignore my muddled thinking about the placement of the wedge and do what you know works for you.

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3 Responses to "Tummy Wedge"

Thank you for going to the extra trouble to explain this alteration. I have a feeling I might need to do something like this and your blog post has made it quite clear.

Hope it helps. Nancy Zieman offered a number of down-n-dirty alterations in that book, Fitting for the Busy Woman, (I think it was called.). She reasoned that the average woman didn’t sew because she didn’t have time. So Nancy’s approach (in the 1960’s, 70’s 80’s) was to suggest easy to the point changes vis the pattern redrafting that the experts recommended. It was a good book.

I’ve got one of Nancy’s books, but not that one. I should have another look in it to see what in there again. It’s been a while.

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