I do my best thinking when I’m relaxed and looking not at the problem but at something else. I’m not alone in this. Many people have had the same experience. This time my conscious mind was directed at watching cops and robbers on TV, but it was picking away at the: Why? Why couldn’t I fit this pattern? Why did it get worse with every change? Why did the Eleanors fit without a hitch? Why did Otto #11 5/2016 Fit easily? Why did I want to continue this mess when I had other patterns which did fit? Eureka! (and not the pants). I realized the Eleanor’s fit because I struggled with them last year. I had learned a lot about that pattern before I started refitting using Peggy Sager’s procedure. I had a good starting point for the Eleanors: I knew my size. There’s another factor at work though. That is both the Eleanors and Otto pants were made with stretch fabrics. Although not the 8″ stretch of my DG2 Jeans, my fabrics had enough give to overcome some fitting/drafting issues. I chose E047 #418 specifically because it was drafted for a non-stretch fabric. I may have erred in that a drapey fabric is also recommended. If it really requires a light-weight drapey fabric, I should just throw the pattern away. The only drapey pants fabrics I have are also knits with stretch. “Light-weight” is debatable. My twill is not blouse weight but it’s not heavy either. It is perfect for warm-weather pants. But maybe I greatly erred in selecting this light weight twill.
So could I find a point of success to start with fitting E047-418? I pulled out Pamela’s Patterns 113 to compare. Thankfully, grain lines matched.
Look, I’ve got 4 or 5 different patterns with different crotches that all fit. Some are drafted for knits; some for denim jeans. But they all fit and they all are very different. I know from personal experience that it’s not just the crotch or the ease, it’s how the ease is distributed, how the grain line is placed, how the fabric drapes, moves, breathes; and how the crotch is shaped. Sometimes I can’t even compare patterns. Comparing a jean to a trouser pattern never works. The back and grain is so canted, I don’t see how the crotches differ. They do differ; and it does matter. Comparing a knit to a trouser isn’t a better proposition either. A pattern drafted for knits will be shorter, narrower, have shallower curves. It’s not just a shrunk version of a non-stretch pattern. You can’t like offset the patterns 1/4″ and see they are the same. It’s comparing apples to oranges. Yeah we’ve got fruit but they taste and digest different.
The patterns aligned fairly easily so I could see important differences. I copied the differences to the 418 tissue. Then took apart the test garment, pressed, and carefully recut. I had to add a gusset to the back crotch because Burda’s crotch was 1/2″ shorter than Pp113.
As you can see from the trimmings above, I removed a lot from the top of the back along with a small sliver down the crotch. Not seen is the 1/2″ added to the crotch extension or how the back crotch was reshaped. The front crotch is boldly reshaped which also required cutting some from the fly. The whole thing will move the crotch in towards the body about a 1/2″. A full inch was trimmed from the front side seam. I just went with it. I decided this was my last try. I didn’t care if it worked or not as long as I’d given it my best effort. I was surprised and pleased when this appeared in my pic files:
Obviously too tight. I’m surprised and not surprised. I saw the PP113 back was 1″ wider than 418 and didn’t correct the back piece. I have a few PP113’s in my closet that I’m wearing. The pants I’m wearing are quite roomy. I didn’t think I needed to worry about that inch.
The first pic was enough to convince me to keep trying. Truly nice was the loss of the almost-camel-toe front and while I have drag lines in back they aren’t as deep or as many and from butt to waist looks pretty good. I did think it odd that the back side seam was shorten and not the front after making the changes from PP113’s but I figured my PP113’s didn’t have issues — so let it go. I can tell from those drag lines on the side front I really should have rewalked the side seams. As a consequence, now I was ripping the side seams, shortening the front via a dart then restitching at a scant 1/4″ hoping to both make the side seams the same length and add enough ease. I took pics at this point but not sharing because I immediately added the 1/2″ deep hip line dart Peggy recommends and took a 2nd set of pics:
Still has room for improvement so I also pinched and then stitched a 1/2″ horseshoe dart at the top of the inseam.
It’s really time for a 2nd test garment/muslin. I’ve made substantial changes. It is so possible to introduce errors during recutting or pinning and basting. I especially remember pinning the horseshoe dart and then changing it slightly before stitching to keep cross grain. A 2nd muslin with changes applied will eliminate those errors and create mirror changes for example: both side seams will probably have the same number and depth of wrinkles if the changes are applied to the tissue and the fabric is cut and stitched once as opposed to the multiple try on’s, pressings and cuttings this fabric has experienced.
But I want to think about this first. My point in making this test was to see if using Peggy Sager’s procedure I could once again fit Burda’s pants patterns quickly. It would be nice not only because Burda publishes such a wide range of pants styles but also they use the same block. So once I fit this pattern, I would transfer the same changes to every Burda pant pattern I wanted to use. But I see no real value in creating a usable tissue from this pattern. Why? Well the hem circumference is finishing at 17″ rather than the 11″ listed in the magazine. Probably because I cut the bottom 4″ off instead of distributing the length adjustment through out the knee.
I actually don’t want an 11″ hem circumference. I learned that from my encounter with Otto’s Carrot Pants. A close hem makes my butt look huge. I mean H-U-U-U-UG-E. ( I’m trying to create the impression of balanced shoulder and hip girth. ) My best looks have hem circumferences between 14 and 18 inches. I can go up to a 20″ hem – which does make my butt look smaller but it also makes me look shorter.
Point is, I would need to alter the leg to reach a hem width I like which will end up creating the PP113 pattern I already use which has a 18″ hem circumference. I’ve done lots of work with PP113. I’ve made PP113 into my basic slacks pattern which includes a range of waistbands and pockets to choose from. I don’t need to do that with a Burda pattern. If I want a basic pant, I’ll pull out PP113 which I will point out again is the crotch shape I used to fit 418. I think I’ll move along. Not sure how quickly I’ll be working with another Burda but when I do I want to come back here and review
My Personal Procedure for Fitting Burda Pants Patterns
- Size: Trace 46; use 50 for back circumference
- Waistband: Use PP113 for Straight Waistband; TJ906 for contoured
- Length adjustments
- -3″ leg length (leaves 1.25-1.5″ for hem)
- Note Size 46 should correct torso length
- Circumference Adjustments
- Sizing 46/50 should take care of most of that
- No front waist dart
- May need 2 back waist darts
- Crotch Shape
- Non-stretch/Wovens Copy from PP113
- Stretch/Knits copy from Eleanor
- Depth Adjustments
- 1/2″ hip line dart (total 1″ removed)
- 3/4″ Top of inseam horseshoe dart (total 1.5″) removed
- Scoop back crotch equal to hip line dart (1″ if using 1/2″ hip line dart)
- Seam Allowances
- Waist, waistband and Crotch 3/8″
- Side seams 1/2″
Just for fun
Fit 00/Out of the Envelope next to the Last fitting (read for test 2):
Such a huge difference but still a little more work to do