As I was saying, my attention was grabbed by B6461 due to 2 rather favorable reviews at Patternreview.com and the envelope back
This pattern is a 4-piece leg slacks pattern. I love TJ906 because it is a 3-piece leg with center seam in the back which allows so much shaping of the back. Well this pattern allows additional shaping in both the back and the front on a slacks pattern. I do not want my trousers to fit like slacks (and yes I do have use for old-fashioned loose trousers); and I don’t want my slacks to fit like jeans. Exactly. I mean there are some similarities just because of my waist, hip knee placement and physical dimensions. I expect a trouser to skim it all i.e. hardly can tell there is a body beneath. I want my jeans body conscience without being able to actually see the lady parts or count any hairs. Slacks to me should be something in between: close at the waist to the hip, dropping a little more freely to the ankle but still following body contours. To me trousers show no curves; jeans show it all (like right in your face) but slacks skim, hint and suggest the lovely form beneath. Like that description? That’s what I keep attempting and failing to achieve with today’s pant patterns. I cannot adjust slacks fit to my satisfaction. So my eyes sort of lit up when I saw the schematic with the additional 2 seams and I ordered it through Patternreview.com.
This is my first Tilton pattern. I can’t keep the sisters separated so I lump their patterns together and I’ve made none by either. Their patterns are always interesting but a little too artsy-fartsy for me. I’ve passed the phase of engineering-interest. I’m not as excited about interesting seams and clever sewing processes as I am with easy to fit to my body and embellishment possibilities. Fit has been a real sink hole for me the last few years due to my aging body. While embellishment is more of a creative outlet. One which I adopted way back when I tailored my appearance to fit in a male-dominated work-field. When I worked, a woman was either poontang or team member . One or the other. No in-between. I feel that women are really fortunate today because they can choose to be both; or neither. Anyway, first Tilton pattern because while it does have some artsy elements, I zeroed in on the fit aspect. I think I’ve known for a while that just as I need seams to fit my -lets call them- mature curves under my blouses and tops, I also need seams to fit pants around the curves waist and below. With 6461 I have not 4, but 6 seams. Yes, the 4-piece leg and the 2-piece shaped yoke. I was also excited and tried hard to contain myself, as the pattern envelope says the hem circumference should finish about 17″.
Be still my beating heart. I have pant pattern after pant pattern that fits nicely until I try to reduce the hem circumference from 24-25 to 18-19. I will swoon if this work. Swear.
So I start by considering size to trace. As usual I fall in between sizes. Usually I’m between 16 and 18 (RTW I’m 14-16). This time I’m between 18 and 20. Only 1/2″ away from 20 which I selected because I’ve had the experience of choose the smaller size and not having enough fabric even by expanding to a 1″ seam allowance! I did not trace the front which was divided at the knee. I put that away in case I might like to use it some time in the future. I traced all the other pieces and added 3/8″ to the side seams. (Makes the side seam allowance 1″ instead of 5/8″) I measured the inseam at 29-1/4″ I like a 29″ inseam but decided not to change length for now. That’s really unusual. I can’t think of another pant pattern that I have not removed 2-4 inches from the leg length. I trimmed the crotch seam allowances to 3/8″. That’s my preferred. A 5/8″ doesn’t curve nicely around the crotch unless it is clipped. In which case you can’t let that seam out if you want. So I just accept that crotch seam will not be changed and trim to 3/8″ where it does curve nicely.
I think I need to buy muslin fabric. I’ve decided new pants patterns aren’t going to fit without major changes and always need a muslin. But searching my stash turns up fabric I want to save for ‘good’; too dark to see details; or wrong stretch/fabric type. Finally I find a bright true-blue, stretch poplin purchased from Fashion Fabrics.com years ago. I remember buying this fabric with the idea of a blouse. It’s too hefty for that so I held onto it for a jacket. I rarely make jackets and this beautiful blue has sat neglected for several years. At least as a muslin it will be used and while not the first on the list, it is in the list of recommended fabrics. My fabric is a cotton/lycra blend with 15% stretch. Well, it stretches a little further but I won’t wear pant stretched like that.
I press my fabric and lay it out. Pin out the tucks in the front and pin-up the hem allowances. This will be a muslin. I mean, who puts bright blue on their butt?? Can tell you not a 6-decade overweight girl would be caught like that. I lay out the pattern pieces and go thread the sewing machine with water-soluble thread. I’m pretty sure I will be ripping seams. May as well start with WST .
Once again, this is a multi-post project. Please come back to follow along with my progress.