Already loving these jeans. They feel so good.
Dont worry, I’ve adjust the exposure on the rest of the pics so we can see the drag lines.
I have been diligently working with slacks patterns the last few months and haven’t touched 906 since the end of July. After trying on all my fall/winter pants, I knew I needed to increase their number starting with black. I chose to work with a cotton/lycra twill. This is a heavy fabric. Definitely winter worthy. It is also quite firm even after 3 coke washes. Not like a brand new tent but definitely not like the soft jeans I’ve been accustomed to wearing the last few years. The Lycra give it a 10% stretch which I like. I think 10% is just enough to be comfortable and for the fabric to “snap back” when I bend. Eliminates bagged out seats and knees. Realistically it is too firm to be a trouser. The legs would absolutely stick out umbrella-like. Of the 2 patterns I have fit, 906 is the better choice for this firmer fabric. 906 is a jean pattern. I will leave off most jean details (pockets, belt loops, top stitching) so it is more of a casual-dress pant.
Armed with a plan (so to speak), I pulled out the box with the pants patterns and was immediately stunned to a stop. I should have 3 envelopes: (1) the original pattern (2) a fitted or nearly fitted jean adn (3) a shorts version. There must have been 2 dozen envelopes. I had rubber banded a large group together. A quick look revealed that they were all minor variations on the basic. I discarded them immediately as the pieces will all need to be revised for my new body. It is easier for me to trace of the newly fitting pieces then it is to add tissue and change the previously fitting. That left me with 7 envelopes. I looked and looked. I wondered if I’d lost my mind. I know my sewing angel has trained me to carefully label the tracings with dates, measurements just anything you can think of because our senior minds don’t remember these details after a while (sometimes a very short while). I could find nothing that told me when these were traced or fit. I stopped and read my blog to see if there were any clues there. Not too much. Well not too much for fitting the pattern straight-out-of-the-envelope because I didn’t do much this last time around. Apparently I had selected to start 2 sizes too large and restricted my initial changes to shortening the leg 2″. Other than going down 2 sizes, I hadn’t written much. So I go back to the patterns try sorting through them again. Got really frustrated. Threw the whole batch in the trash. I’d wasted enough time to trace the pattern 3-4 times and if I really didn’t make many fitting changes….. I pulled out the originals. Pressed to remove wrinkles and traced a size 18. I shortened the pattern leg 2″ and got started.
Fitting was not difficult but did have a few surprises. I ended up shortening the leg 3″ (1″ above the knee 2″ below). I also shortened the crotch length 1/2″ and shortened the sides 1″. The side shortening I do with a dart. It’s a depth change; changing only the length of the side without effecting the crotch uprights (length). Had to make the waistband twice. I cut it and stitched it together; well sort of nailed it together. Then discovered this thing wasn’t going to work with this body. I experimented a bit; pinching and pinning before decided I needed a new one. New WB worked beautifully.
I want to share a few additional details on the WB. Fitting the waistband has been a real challenge especially on this 906 jean. Partly, it is my own error as I kept fitting at the top of the leg when I needed to adjust the contour waistband itself. This time I made two 3/8″ darts in the pattern which removed 1.5″ length along the top edge i.e. the waist edge. Curiously that made the WB too short, so I had to add 2.5″ to the under/overlap edge. I know, crazy. But without the darts the waistband would not snug to my waist. Without the extra 2.5″, I didn’t have an over/underlap. To preserve the WB fit through wear, I borrowed a trick from the RTW industry. I used 1/2″ elastic triple-zigzag stitched inside the waistband band, on the facing, at the top (waist) edge. I’m not satisfied with the procedure I used on the elastic. I stitched the WB and facing together then added the elastic. The elastic was cut 4″ shorter than the area I planned to attach. (I didn’t attach it from underlap to overlap edge). Thinking this was as good as understitching to the facing, I completed the WB attachment. Oh what a pain. I expected the facing would be a little challenge as the elastic would change the way it handles. Did not expect the facing to refuse to stay on the inside and since I didn’t stitch the seam allowance to the facing, the seam allowance wanted to curl and fold and make a mess. I needed to top stitch the WB edge carefully smoothing out the SA on the inside while rolling the facing to the back side. Then the elastic effectively gathers the facing and didn’t want to lay flat as I stitched in the ditch from the front to secure the bottom edge of the facing. PITA. I said a few bad words too. Definitely want to revise this procedure next time started with how short I cut the elastic. It does not need to be 4″ shorter.
The jean looked nicer during fitting then it does in the final pics taken after the WB was finished. I mean I fit the entire pant. Removed basting and then nailed in the waistband with the elastic tweak. The pant always looked better; felt great but I admit jean-snug. So I’m not sure, if it is the fabric, the new size I traced or the final WB, but the finished jean is not fitting as nicely as the previous or as it did during the 3 fittings.
My waistline has settled down. For months after surgery it could change inches daily. Not doing that any more. Pretty obvious here that the tummy is a a bit tight which may be causing those wrinkles in the joint.
Have to confess that during fitting I let out the sides seams and added a waist gusset.
I stitched strips of elastic together and basted them in place. When I was happy with the fit, I trimmed the “gusset”. Even at this point I was asking myself is it the size or the fabric. Absolutely a different fabric can change the fit. I really thought with 10% stretch this fabric would have needed the side seam-allowances increased not decreased as I did. Still a
stiff very firm fabric needs extra ease…
The diagonals here surprised me. Again question as to size or fabric being the cause. Next time I go up a size. It is easier to stitch the SA’s deeper than it is to add a gusset.
But Dang! These feel good. I’m wearing them despite these wrinkles.
Final fitting changes:
Leg length -3″
Crotch length -1/2″
Side depth -1″
Tummy adj: 1/2″dart CF
Start with size 20