Despite the extreme inconvenience Photobucket has caused, I haven’t given up blogging. I haven’t even taken a real vacation. I did take a week to work with the embroidery capabilities of my Brother Dream. No post, but let’s just say I’m really impressed. Enough to wonder about trading in the paid-in-full Ruby.
The other time suck I’ve been involved in is refitting Trudy Jansen #906 Designer jean. I got sucked-in when looking carefully at the final pics of the Rose Short
I’m most concerned about the rouching that has developed along the side seams. I know that means I have somehow gotten one side (probably the back) longer than the front side seam. How, I’m not sure. I also am concerned with the developing pull lines around the crotch and the little bubble along the CB. First thing I wondered was when did this all develop.I remember this pattern being beautifully fitting. I can look back at my shorts and see that the side rouching has been apparent although to a lesser amount for the last 2 years. It’s not really evident in the long-legged pants I’ve made. I mean, there might be a little excess length. I didn’t walk the seams just look at them. So there could be a little excess but I don’t see it. I’m guessing the rouching mostly developed in the conversion from long-legged to short. The issues with the crotch are a different story. I don’t see them when the pant is hanging on the hanger (the rouching I can see). When I go back and look at photos, I see the crotch issue steadily developing. This could be due to size change. Lord knows I’ve tried to confront the skin cancer with white donuts. (Which BTW does nothing for the skin cancer either. Oh and does nothing for my other ailments but does make me happy.)But I digressed. This could be due to size changes but I also suspect that my rotary cutter has trimmed here and there accidentally. Bottom line, I think instead of continuing to alter the existing pattern I should start fresh.
And I do. I trace the size 16, which I’ve been using 2 years, from waist to knee notches. Then I trim the inseams and yoke seams to 1/4″; trim side seams to 1/2″ trim all the rest to 3/8″. Cut my fabric; permanently stitch the zipper, inseams,yokes, and baste the rest. I put the shorts on. Correction, I try to pull the shorts up. Foreboding wraps me in his cold arms. With great effort which includes a trip upstairs to lay on the bed, I zip this sucker up. Either I’ve traced the wrong size or those little white donuts have done more damage than estimated. Enough for one day.
Next day I decide I should really do this right the only exception I will make is not start with a true muslin or attempt the hip line dart. These shorts have always fit. It’s like Trudy Jansen recognized that women don’t need or need as much of a dart as is usually added to the hip line. I slip the tape measure around my hips, then decide I should choose my size from finished measurements. I choose to trace an 18 length wise but 20 width wise. I cut my fabric, a rather nasty polyester, and baste everything except the zipper. I do sew the zipper in place because I’m optimistic about fit. V2 is not really lovely and I’m surprised that it takes 4 fittings to get it that good. This pattern has always fit beautifully. But then again, I’ve always followed the designers instructions and selected by hip size. I transfer changes to the pattern because I’m getting such large amounts of change. In fact, I’m beginning to doubt that my recorded finished measurement is correct. The theory is absolutely correct, but you must first correctly identify your personal preferences. (And in Peggy’s defense re the earlier snark, she says repeatedly her instruction apply to Silhouette Patterns. She even refuses to drape someone else’s patterns because she doesn’t know what decisions they’ve made.)
Onto V3 i.e. Version 3. Despite the fitting photo directly above, I’m feeling little more confident and select a much better fabric for V3. It is a cotton/poly twill (2% stretch) in a deep, dark-chocolate brown. Makes my mouth water just looking at it. I was definitely improving the rouching along the side which is a combination of (1) the knee notches on the front are higher than the notches of the back pieces. I’m sure. I walked the originals. (2) The theory is if you take a 1/2″ dart on the front side seam, you need a 1/2″ dart on the back side seam. This isn’t working in actual practice. I think it is basic geometry. I think the curves of the side seam are becoming arcs of 2 different circles and therefore a half-inch change on one side does not create the same total length as the 1/2″ change on the other. You’ll just have to think back to your basic geometric rules. I’m not here to teach any kind of math.
All the pictures have been lightened greatly so that you can see the pant details.
So although the rouching is improving, I don’t have it nailed. Also, the crotch is definitely looking short. Which has me saying ??? I did as Peggy directs. I settled the crotch where it was comfortable for me. And it looked to be of correct length until I started removing excess circumference and making depth changes above the butt. Note: my depth adjustments do not extend to the CF or CB on these shorts. The crotch length is not being affected in any manner. Despite that crotch, I’m trying to copy the changes for this fitting to the tissue. DH calls for all garbage (does anybody else try to beat the garbage men to cans?) I clear out some old, old versions of 906 and out goes garbage. Unfortunately, I get confused as to what I’ve done and what I wanted to do. I look at my adjusted pattern pieces and I can’t walk seams. I recalculate. Re-walk. It’s almost like I’ve got pieces from different versions and the garbage is gone.
Day 4 I start over with Version 4. I mean I lost it some place. I need to start fresh with a clear mind. I keep the same waistband but trace the yoke, front and backs in a straight size 20. I already know that the 20 has far too much circumference but I think I need more crotch length. Along the way I’ve decided I prefer a 7.5″ finished inseam and trim the leg-length accordingly. Once again, I choose a nice cotton twill for my test garment. Once again, I put the zipper in permanently but use water-soluble thread the baste all the other pieces. As expected, the 20 is too large but it’s easier this time for me to see this issues. One of the first things I notice is that the front crotch is not too short, although I’d swear that was the case from looking at those chocolate-brown shorts. The front crotch is in fact almost 2″ too long. The back crotch however needs every 1/8″ of length it now has. I work at reducing circumference by taking in the side seams 1/2″. I have a depth issue that extends horizontally from mid back, across the sides, to center front — the 2″ excess length of the front crotch. This is not an easy fix. The depth/dart has to be taken on the back below the yoke, otherwise the yoke disappears along the side seam. If I take the dart at the same level on the front, I’ll have a weird-looking pair of shorts I don’t want to wear –and I’ve already embroidered the pockets i.e. I want to be able to wear this next pair. So I take the dart on the back below the yoke but on the front just below the waistband. Which works on the test garment…
Trouble is the changes have gotten so large, they are hard to handle. Preparing to start another hopefully final version, I transfer the changes back to the tissue. My usual way is to slash and overlap the tissue where I darted the muslin. . The changes are so large that tissue won’t lay anywhere near flat! I don’t think I’ve ever had that experience before. TBH here, I’ve never hit these personal measurements before and I’m sure my maturing (if you’re not pc that would be aging) body contributes to the new shape I’m fitting. I actually ruined the tissue trying to slash, over lap, dart …
..and had to trace yet another copy for Version 5. I am persistent. I will win. Instead of using the slash, overlap or dart, I plot points and draw new curves. For example, on the back I measure the dart depth and it’s position on my test garment, then at the top of the tissue I place a point on the side seam the width of the dart and using the french curve, draw a new curve from the top of the pant back to the dot. Repeat for other changes. I realize the front needs 2 changes (1) an even 3/4″ removed across the front and (2) a 1″ dart from side seam to mid front. The 2 changes make it easier to accomplish the big change. I mean the 2 smaller changes are easier to make on the tissue and keep the tissue flat. I walk seams again and realize that this method has introduced some circumference where I don’t want it. So I move the point I put on the side towards the center by the amount of unintended ease. Hey this isn’t a Craftsy Course. Besides, I’m the only person I’ve heard of that needed to do such a thing, so maybe good clear instructions aren’t relevant. I chose another nice 100% cotton twill for Version 5. I did a little more tweaking but stopped after 3 changes.
to be honest my enthusiasm is flagging. I’m continuing this fitting because I want to keep going while the changes are fresh in my mind and besides the pieces from the Rose Shorts (that were closer to fitting than what I have created) are gone with the garbage men. I’ve learned a couple of surprising things. I need a size maybe 2 smaller in front that in the back. I respect Peggy. I like Peggy and I know she would tell me I’m wrong… but… The front above has 2 vertical tucks to remove circumference . When I increased the side seams 1/2″, I got VPL. When I take tucks in the front, most of the excess ease is removed and the pant looks better fitted. The fitted front crotch is much shorter than the back. This is typical for me. Always has been. For a long time I called it a tilted waist. I was tremendously pleased when RTW for which I had to depend upon for work clothing, decided to alter their block and make a shorter front crotch standard. So, I’m not eager to copy the pattern another time, but I think it might be quicker if I chose a smaller size and then added length to the back crotch. Related to that, it might be easier to trace the pattern and add a Prominent Seat Adjustment which adds both length to the crotch and width across the butt. However, these days I’m desperately trying to follow Peggy Sagers and I’m continuing with the LCD process as I finish the fitting/refitting of TJ906. But I admit I have 1 maybe 2 more test garments before I’m satisfied.
Four of the 5 shorts test-garments are in my closet. Yes, even though there is room for improvement I plan to wear these at least this summer. When I look at my 2018 summer clothes they may be immediately discarded. Thing is they are no worse than anyone else is wearing. No kidding. I see shorts in SD that are either tight enough to count pubic hairs or loose enough I wonder why they haven’t dropped around the ankles. Once I get gussied up, my shorts look fine: