Eureka Pant

EurekaX : Wearable Pair

Finished a wearable pair of Eureka’s. Finished as in I’ve had enough of this nonsense. Will the way I normally dress cover up the worst?

I used a plain-weave,100% cotton fabric advertised as “shirting”.  Would not have used this for shirts.  It’s not a light weight crisp fabric.  More like med weight chambrey for winter shirts. As such it does have considerable body.

When I transferred changes from the muslin to my tissue, I really thought I would be tweaking the fit. Well first issue, was realizing I didn’t fit or even attempt to use a waistband on the muslin. “No problem,” I thought “I marked the waist along the bottom edge of the elastic as directed.”  Add the seam allowance and waistband should be done.  I used the waistband pattern from my Kessinger’s cause I like the way it fits. Spent 4 fitting sessions fussing with the WB.  This fabric acted like denim. It would stretch a little more every time I put them on or took them off.  I shortened the WB 2″. 2″ less than the Kessinger which I am currently wearing.

Anyway, 4 fittings for waistband before deciding to insert elastic. 3 more fittings trying to adjust the ease.  Finally decided I was completely off and undid all the adjustments, sans waist-related. Started again. 8 fittings later, I put on blouse and shoes and declared them barely wearable.  At that time I had lowered the crotch another 1/2″, increased the CB crotch 2″ at the waist (like a big ol’ dart), and gathered the leg to the waistband. I had 8 darts in the back before deciding to pinch and gather.  Also, have a single dart on each side of the front.  The below-butt, thigh ease is still wrong. If you look closely at the front, the back is showing along the side seam between knee and WB. Shouldn’t.  I tried smoothing out the side curve (I don’t have curvy sides. I have a curvy front and a curvy behind). Could not reduce the curve more than 1/4″ at it’s deepest.  There’s still plenty of curve left. Every time I tried to smooth that curve either the seat was too tight or the crotch developed diagonals (like little birds) just above the back crotch curve. Or both; both would happen.

For the most part, the front and sides looked good throughout. If I only had to work with them, this would be a nice pair of slacks.

Other than the front dart, I didn’t adjust the front.  As mentioned previously, I increased the side-seam 1/4″ where the sides were curviest.  Also had to shorten the side seam by 3/4″. Before that I looked really bowlegged. It was the stripes. Lift the sides enough and the stripes are straight instead of bowing.

The back was nearly impossible to even improve.  The best I could do was making the crotch the right length so it did not tuck into me, pull and bind. As stated before, I did remove a little of the side curvature, but anymore than 1/4″ would result in bigger, deeper diagonals and what looked like VPL (but wasn’t because I wear boy-shorts).

BTW all the wrinkles above change depending upon not only how I stand, but where the WB decides it is going to sit this time.

After 3 days of fitting, I asked myself how much would be covered up by my clothing and the way I normally stand:

Bank line view:

OK good enough for today.


What I hoped for the most, from Sarah Veblems on-line class and this latest round off fitting, was more understanding of pant fitting as it applied to my body. OK, I did hope for near-perfect fitting pants.  But I am a realistic and I am very happy with some of the light bulb moments I had from both the class, the discussion threads and my effort at fitting.

  • I had not really considered the effect of my tummy.  Most of the fitting advice centers on making the front crotch longer to go over the fuller tummy.  In the class discussions it is brought out that that a substantial belly will also require a longer crotch.  How long? That’s for the individual to discover but Sarah suggests discovery 1/4″ at a time.  I went up 2 pattern sizes which gave me the fork length I needed in front and most of the fork length needed in back.
  • Sarah’s discussion of scooping and lowering the crotch especially in relation to the HBL’s was very informative. I did feel a great deal of unease about the 3/4″ scoop and 1.25″ lowering that I did which didn’t solve all the issues in back.   That was left for the:
  • Prominent Seat AKA Protruding or Generous Seat.  There is an entire video devoted to this issue.  I doubt I will ever completely resolve this fitting issue with a slack fit.  I didn’t understand before this class the issue my seat was causing. I’ve tried just about every pant pattern I can get my hands on hoping for the miracle pattern. If it isn’t a loose fitting trouser or body conscious jean, I will have the issue of too much ease over the thigh accompanied by diagonals or poofiness.  Take a look again at Sewing Plums pic of the different seats.   Sarah says I can work on that excess ease by shortening the back crotch (Not messing with that. It was too hard  getting it looking as well as it does. ) Or adding a center back leg-seam as in my Trudy Jansen jeans. I may attempt the center-back leg-seam in the future. For now, I”m tired of this game and August is too hot of a month to be trying on  long-legged pants.
Eureka Pant

EurekaX: Muslin 2

Bt the time I gave up on Muslin 1, it was a wreck. Even as I was scooping and lowering, I had felt like I was going too far.  The instructions are pretty clear. Scooping and lowering will cause the HBL’s to become level.  I have to confess, I wasn’t totally sold on the HBL theory.  I could have easily ignored the HBL’s except for the wrinkles and folds I didn’t like and was seeing.

The 1.25″ scoop and 1.25″ lowering created issues. Oh sure the front and side HBL’s leveled, but the front crotch, which was not being changed, started looking too long.  Deep vertical folds developed close to the front inseam

Why was scooping the back, creating too much fabric in front? Also, initially I had placed the crotch at a comfortable level and the front thigh also felt good. After the drastic scoop/lowering, the front thigh started pulling and being uncomfortable. It perplexed me that I was not making changes to the front at all, yet the front was becoming worse.

Another thing that perplexed me was the ease across the butt.  I kept seeing a blinding light bounce off my seat:

I’d look at that and think “I need more ease/circumference.”  But then the side view would show a typical and desirable slacks fit

I started this new muslin, Muslin 2, wondering about the HBL’s, but also concerned with the wrinkles, folds and tightness in unexpected places.

Before starting Muslin 2, I compared Muslin 1 tissue to the larger-size range just recieved. I had thought I would trace the  next size up as  Rae Cumbie, one of the creators of the Eureka pattern, suggests. According to Rae moving up a pattern size or moving up a back size will solve many problems. Certainly did when I fit the size Medium a couple of years back. I went from a Medium with Back 2 to a Medium with Back 3. Instant success. When I compared the Muslin 1 Tissue to the pattern I discovered that all the scooping/lowering I did plus the extra 1/2″ added to the side seams was equivalent to using the XL. XL wasn’t working for me. So I went up to the 2XL.


I traced the same size front and back. On Muslin 1,  I made several tweaks to the tissue based upon my previous experience.  This time around, I lacked confidence for that.  I traced almost exactly as is.  I did straight-out the hip curve just a teensy bit by drawing a vertical along the side seam between waist and the first HBL; and before cutting the fabric I folded the leg up 4″.

I calculated that size 2XL had 8″ of ease. How did it fit?  Well it was way too big

FIT 01

Huge vertical folds are forming on both the side and back. It’s more of a pajama fit than a slacks fit.   The front looks pretty good

… until I realized how big it is.

The front and side HBL’s are level at this first fitting.  No scooping needed. For the first time, the Back HBL’s are better

They arent perfectly horizontal but they are not dipping sharply into the crotch. Speaking of the crotch

The vertical folds of excess fabrics rather disguise there is an issue back there.

So what to do?

Fit 02, 03

The next fittings, were about reducing the excess ease.  I wanted a slack fit or at least a trouser fit, not the pajama fit I was seeing.  Besides while my experience tells me that back crotch looks like it needs scooping, I can’t be sure how much of what I am seeing is simply fabric with no place to go.  I figured since the ease was everywhere, i.e. the whole pattern was too wide, it wouldn’t hurt to reduce evenly by folding along the grainlines and stitching measured amounts. I thought taking the tucks along the grainline would keep the grainline in the center of the leg–where they belong.


i.e. just the way I traced the 2XL and stitched the muslin



Ease was reduced by stitching 1/4″ seams along the grain lines.




Ease was further reduced by stitching 1/2″ deep along the grainlines

Also I started stitching in the back darts. Know this is not an optimal point to drape darts, but I was struggling with masses of fabric at the waist. I made two 1/2″deep darts on each back.  BTW this is not unusual for me. On some patterns I’ve made 6 darts in back (3 on each side). The 4 dart 5/*” deep arrangement is pretty standard for me.

Fit 04

I wanted to reduce the ease further. But at this point, (Hip +4″ ease), I was feeling the fabric across my seat.  Also the leg hem is as narrow as I want it.  I discovered several years ago that “carrot legs” make hips humongous. The front looked nice until I saw the wings on my sides.  There doesn’t seem to be corresponding ease on the back despite all the ease over the back thigh.     I would like to achieve something like 2-2.5″ ease. Since the fabric is feeling tight across my seat, the evenly deep seams are not possible.  Hoping to decrease the wings, I offset the front side seam 1/2″ from the back.  I can now see the issue at the back crotch and be pretty sure it’s time to scoop.  I hemmed and hawed. No doubt in my mind that I needed the scoop, the question was how much. Do I really fuss with incremental 1/4″ scoop and then 1/4″ lowerings as I had done on Muslin 1 or do I cut to the chase.  Finally decided that it would be fast and easy to cut another back and proceeded with my usual 1/2″ scoop and 1/2″ lower.

I am perplexed. Both happy and unhappy with these 2 changes.

The back HBL’s look better ie less chevroned.

To tell the truth, I don’t care about the HBLs. I only pay attention to them because Sarah Veblem says they are the key to fitting pants.  I am really all about the crotch and the leg.

Is the crotch fixed?

Well it is better but still looks a bit weird.  LIke it could use a little more scooping.  But, Oh MY! Both sides have developed big folds of fabric. Yes one side could be adjusted a little better at the waist (leveling the HBL’s)  but I don’t think that’s going to completely remove the diagonal folds.

For the first time, I had issues with tightness across the front thigh and even though I carefully adjusted CF in the mirror so the HBL’s were level, they are chevroning.  I think the new front fold indicates that the front crotch is now too long.  Pull it up at CF?  I did. It’s snug. By-and large, I am satisfied with ease across the front and sides.  Do I want to scoop some more? I mean the first scoop seems to have made the side and front worse and barely improved the front.


I scooped and lowered another 1/4″. Also tried to remove some of the excess ease in the lower leg by increasing the side seam below the 3rd HBL and the knee HBL.

It felt more comfortable; Side and front HBLS are pretty level.  Back HBL’s no worse, not sure  any better i.e. not sure a total scoop/lowering of 3/4″ as an improvement

Half Inch Scoop

3/4″ Scoop

Then I did what I probably should have done back in Fit2/3. To finally reduce the excess ease, I pinned the side seam but only on one side; removed the pins and basted before trying on yet again.

To my surprise, the pinned/basted side looks much improved. Did I make a real mistake earlier by not pinning out the ease along the side seam?  I tried to preserve the grainline in the center of the leg. Easy to find out


I released the  front and back center tucks I had made in Fit 02/03. Turned the muslin inside-out and pinned the other side.

I was surprised at how much better the muslin looked by pinning out the excess at the side seam.   Both side HBLS are angling down towards the back. Front HBL’s are level; back are nearly level. My real concern is the crotch.  The front crotch is stellar.

The back needs more work on the darts, but the crotch looks good

It does feel a little close across the seat.  Like I’d wish for 10% stretch, but I am not seeing that blinding light that generally bounces off my butt because the seat of the pants is too tight. Oh and the leg is astonishing

This is a slack fit.  See  how the pant back just cups under the seat:

That is a slack fit. As far as the extra fabric over the back leg, I’ve come to understand I probably need it. The Generous Derriere video;  all the discussions and now this Pin showing the difference between seats:

Pic should be linked to  SewinPlums site where there is much more information on many fitting and styling subjects.

The pic shows 3-different tummy and seat types.  I am the last or far right figure. To me it is clear that there will be excess fabric beneath my tummy and  hip.  If it bothers me, I need to switch to a jean fit.  I don’t want every pair of pants to have a jean fit. Besides, I also enjoy a trouser fit.


I’ve marked the waist and, using Sarah’s method, transferred the changes to my pattern. I don’t think I can improve this muslin further.  If not perfect, it is at least not bad and definitely better than the RTW I was considering buying.  It is time to sacrifice a good pant fabric. Time to discover if the fit of this muslin is transferable to real fabric.  I’ve been at this point several times this year.  Only to be horribly disappointed when working with good fabric.  I’m reserved; with-holding a final evaluation–until I can see it work “for reals”.



Eureka Pant

EurekaX: Fitting Muslin 01

WARNING:  Overloaded with pics.  This is the detailed journal/post of my latest attempt to fit the Eureka. 

Muslin 01: Fitting Size Large with Back 3

Fit 01

I had forgotten about curvature built into the side of this pattern.  I am pretty straight along my sides.  It is my front and back that have all the curves. Consequently, if I make this pant as drafted I will have a jodphur-look or as I like to call it M!ckey Mouse ears.  I do not pin out the side curve right now. From experience I know I am quite likely to change the crotch. When I do the whole upper torso changes slightly  and will shift the curve’s position. So, if I pin out now, I  will be changing it later.  Rightnow, I look at the collapsing sides and say “I’ll get back to this”

I clearly saw the front chevroning in the mirror when I adjust the muslin to sit on my body comfortably.  Suspected and now confirmed are the back chevrons.  The side HBL’s are fairly straight. Any slanting could be due to my photo abilities rather than a fitting discrepancy.  It is the front and back HBLS which need attention. I don’t recall the front chevroning during my fitting earlier this year. But I can’t trust my recall.  I definitely had issues from Chemo Brain.  What I do remember clearly, is I was never able to completely remove the back chevron using the instructions which accompanied the tissue pattern. My Kessinger fitting is coming along nicely — still room for improvement– and the 906 has definitely produced very-good versions.  So I wouldn’t attempt fitting this pant again at least this quickly except for the new understanding and knowledge I derived from Sarah Veblems Fun with Fit: Pants online class.  According to that, I need to work on fixing the back chevron’s first through a combination of scooping and lowering the back crotch.


So you’re supposed to view the HBLs and thn reach around to the back and pinch until they are horizontal and the grain lines vertical. I didn’t do well with that procedure.  I got uneven bunches. I think my arms must be a tad short.  I decided that since I normally lower the crotch 1/2″ and scoop 1/2″, I would try altering the back crotch by those amounts.  I sort of followed Sarah’s procedure to transfer draping changes to the pattern.  I got my back pattern piece out. Drew in the seam allowances along curve and inseam before drawing the horizontal line at the base of the crotch and the vertical line descending from the waist. Apologize that the pics are not that easy to see.  Blue dashes designate the original stitching line.  Brown lines are the horizontal and vertical just drawn. Next was ticking in 1/2″ below the crotch and 1/2″ in the back of the crotch.  I drew new lines as Sarah demonstrates and used my curve to copy the original curve. Finally establishing the new cutting line in purple ink.

Up to this point in time, I have always needed to lower the crotch. Scooping was never enough.  I felt a bit experimental today and decided to first test simply lowering the crotch.   I sliced along the new cutting line but only up to the point where a scoop would start taking effect. I didn’t trim away the slice, I am not sure my assumption is correct. I pinned the little slice of tissue into the interior of the tissue thigh area and left it dangling there while I operated on the muslin.

I love Sarah’s process for making these changes. I aligned the tissue on top the muslin using the Grain and HBL’s. Just like Sarah demos except I didn’t have draping to transfer to my tissue. I marked my new cutting line on the muslin then gave it  a quick trim followed by stitching the new lowered crotch. And the results:

Well they did feel more comfortable, even if they don’t look much better.  The real questions are have the HBL’s and horizontal folds of Fit01 improved?

Comparing Fit01(left) with  Fit02(right)

Not really.  Also, I expected the center back to rise more. I expected some improvement in the chevroning of the HBLs. Not that I can tell.

BTW, that comfort factor?  It’s the first thing I always notice when I am on the right track. As garment fit improves, I always feel more comfortable in the garment.

Interesting to me, the muslin looks a little tight on my butt when looking straight on and feels close. However the side view says it is fine.

I mean, it is a slack and should cup just a little under the seat. Maybe I havent worn a slack in so long I don’t remember how they should fit?


This summer, fitting pants has involved adding length to the front crotch. I found this out the hard way.  I added and added and added to the back crotch. No joy.  The front would pull the  back  forward and through the crotch.  I would accumulate more and more height at the waist front while the back continued to dip and really look like a mess.  After adding 4″ to the back, I tried adding to the front crotch. Problem solved.  I had this in mind and was glad it would be easy to test because I added 1/2″ seam allowance depth to the inseams. I ripped open the crotch and down the thigh 9″. Sigh, for years and years I’ve always had a thigh gap.  Didn’t matter how much I weighed, I had air between my thighs.  Now when I stand with knees touching, thighs touch–all the way to the knee.  Thinking I could use a little ease in the thigh area was the reason for ripping down 9″. Oh how easy it was to align the two edges.The gradual slope made it so easy to determine the stitching path..  But did it help?

Pretty sure that’s a big negatory on the front.  I have deep diagonals pointing to the middle of the thigh and poofiness in the  Venus area; and the HBL’s are not improved one bit.


I trimmed away the rest of the tissue modified before lowering the crotch (Fit 02)l repositioned the tissue and completed the combination scooping and lowering of the back crotch. Since adding to the front crotch didn’t improve the fit at all, I restored the previous seam line and then took pics. At this juncture the back has been scooped 1/2″ and lowered 1/2″

Talk about comfort level, way up IMMEDIATELY! The HBL’s are still dipping. I am reluctant to be highly critical of the plumb of the  grain lines because of how I stand (legs apart) for these pics. Also, I have picture taking issues.  My pics always have to rotated at least a few degrees to look upright.  So, taking it all with a grain of salt, it looks to me like the grain lines angle out rather than bow out.  If they bowed, they would bend back towards the inseam instead of continuing unabated along the same angle. In which case, more scooping is prescribed

The back thigh, while definitely improved, has   a big diagonal accompanied by  a smaller diagonal extending from the 3rd HBL towards mid-thigh. There is some horizontal buckling a little lower but I think that’s just the result of a hot, sticky day.  I’ll have to watch and see if the issue continues.

I am feeling happy, especially when I see the near perfect side HBL’s

(umm, my pic flash and color can be unreliable).

and the front

while sporting some excess skirting has finally improved!    In the mirror the HBL’s did not dip. By the time I walked to my pic taking position, the front rearranged.  I am wondering if I need more ease across front hip and tummy or if I just need a little more length in the back crotch.  Well, there’s one easy way to find out.



Since I’d already added the 1/2″ SA depth to the inseams, it was beyond easy to offset  front from back inseam to extend the back crotch length.  Procedure was very similar to when I added to the front crotch length and does not need to be repeated. Also, I’d rather you watch Sarah Veblums videos.  Sarah does an excellent job demoing this procedure.  Much better than I.

Well this feels crazy. The HBL’s are dipping and the diagonals are still there. I thought scooping and extending the crotch point both had the effect of adding to the total back fork length. I thought they were interchangeable except for where extra fabric would be needed.  I’ve added 1/2″ more to the point, why doesn’t that help as much as the scoop?

And look at this crazy front:

I’d rather wear the front from the very first photo shoot! HBL’s are dipping a lot, plus there are diagonals and weird drag lines from crotch to tummy. It is slipping during modeling.  I place the front HBL’s level/horizontal in the mirror. Walk to my photo–shoot place and take a pic.  Somewhere in between, and not noticed by me, the front slips  a little.  I wonder if that would be corrected by adding a WB? I fought a1.5″ wide elastic WB for weeks. It had the same unstability making fit a nightmare. Now I am pulling the pant up and expecting it to stay in the same place by tying  a 3/8″ elastic at my waist. Not sure this will ever really work.

The front looked better in the very first fitting:


I thought  it odd,  that adding to the back fork length didn’t help.  Since scooping and lowering in combination did, that was my alteration here.  I scooped and lowered another 1/4″.  So in this pic the total amount scooped is 3/4″ scoop and 3/4″ lowering. Also, since adding length at the point didn’t have any effect,  I restored the inseam SA’s to their default depth.

I don’t see much of an improvement from Fit01. When when I compare with the previous fit session, I am not sure the additional 1/4″ did anything at all.  Both pairs of  2 diagonals extending from hip to midthigh are still quite prominent.  and the chevroning hasn’t budged. TBH, I’d ignore the stubbornly persistent HBL chevroning, if the back diagonals would lessen greatly or go away.

I expected for this scoop to make the back hip too tight.

But the side view, says circumference at hip is still fine.  I do want the slack fit which will include a little cupping.  Well good news and considering my photo skills,  the side-HBLs are once again near perfect.

The front

surprises me more than the back.  With that 3/4″x3/4″” lowered and scooped crotch,  the front HBLs are nearly horizontal. But, eeh gads, I had to pull them up pretty firmly and I am feeling tightness across my front thigh which is supposed to indicate a too low crotch.   Still this front is almost, I stress, almost wearable. The front HBLS are pretty level and the grain line pretty straight. It is the circled area that has me most perplexed:

Sarah mentions several times both in the videos and the discussion that one way to determine what is happening is to turn the pant inside out and place one leg within the other.  You then step into the leg and observe how the crotch is conforming to the body. For what it is worth, and sharing my post-chemo belly,  I took a pic:

Then carefully pinned around the front crotch–something I was not able to do with the back.  –I think I am “jumping the gun” here.  Sarah stresses over and over:  fix the back HBLs and grain first. But it is the end of 5 long-hot fitting sessions. I am tired of little progress.  I want to see change! I pinned and found that the crotch is snugging as it should but then a fold about 3/8″ thick (total 3/4″) is forming along the  crotch and inseam. What does that mean? Do I have too much front crotch length?

I love the class and videos, but when looking for a specific solution they are a PITA in which to search for answers. I keep mentally holding onto the new-to-me info.  Which was back chevroning and diagonals means scoop; and a big belly like mine is going to need additional front crotch length.


I scoop one more time but do not lower.  Remember way back when I added 1/2″ to the back side seam?  I nearly always need more fabric to cover my seat.  I often explain to people that I am deeper than I am wide. If you drop a vertical dividing my side you’ll see that my tush sticks out further than my tummy. IOW, I have more to seat to cover than tummy–even though that’s now quite a bit of tummy.

It is a disgusting repeat.  Both front and back HBL’s are dipping the same amount as at the first fitting.  I have now scooped 1.25″ and lower 3/4″.  The front has gotten worse.  I shake my head echoing the disgust I feel.   Even with new understanding, I still cannot fit this pant which once fit practically out of the envelope in a size medium.  No wonder fat people tend to hate themselves. The failure can be overwhelming.

FIT 08

Figuring it cant be any worse if I lower the crotch, yet again.  I lowered it another 1/2″.  At this point I have scooped 1.25″ and lowered 1.25″.  Did it help?

Not with the HBL’s.  The diagonals in back ar less prominent, an improvement. The front really has a skirting issue i.e. lots of skirting at the hip joint.  Looks kind of poofy. Not a look I really want to wear. Maybe it would look better in a pant fabric?  I am using a 100% cotton. It’s a home dec fabric which doesn’t have any stretch (required for muslins). But it isn’t something I would wear as a pant.


I take a break.  For one thing, I am again at this place where I don’t know what to do next.  I think a 1.25″x1.25″ scoop and lower is extreme.  I think it pointless to continue the same scooping and lowering when not seeing any improvement or as here the front is worse. There is an old saying “If you always do what you always did, you’ll always get what you always got.”  I found that saying to be spot on.  If I want to see different results, I need to do something different. But what?    I wonder about going up a size. The  very first Eureka I  made several years ago, practically fit right out of the envelope? Well it did after I changed from a Back 2 to the Back 3.Going up a size could be a possible change, except  the size I am using (a Large + Back 3)  is the largest in my envelope.  Sigh, it is the only new thing I can think of doing.  I have ordered the next range, from PR.  Should have it in a few days for comparing, tracing and Muslin2.  I also posted on PR hoping that Sarah will come through in a few days give me some pointers.  In the meantime, there’s always other sewing I want to do.

Eureka Pant

EurekaX: Measurements, Tracing, Initial Adjustments

One important caveat on this fitting session.  I have found some light weight support panties that I love.  They have a leg about 2″ and extend all the way up to my bra band. They support my tummy making  separate abdominal able support unneeded. It’s nice to need one less accoutrement in the summer.  So far, they are light enough that over heating has not been an issue. Probably won’t want to wear them if we hit 100 deg temps. In addition to the abdominal support and smoothing the entire torso, they give me an actual waist!  Haven’t seen one of those in months. But it is important to note that without these, any fitting I do on the Eureka will most likely be invalidated.  IOW pants worn with the support panties won’t fit, look or feel the same as pants worn with.  It’s a trade off.  During fitting, I will make it a point to wear them every day.


Even though I had just taken full measurements a month ago and spot checked them since then, I remeasured the critical Waist/Tummy/Hip.  Full disclosure in the table below.

My Body Measurements//// Plus 2″ Ease////Size According to Body measurement////// Size Chosen by Added eEse.

Waist 40 42
Tummy 46 48 L M w/Back 3
Hip 48 50 XL L w/Back 3


I opted to trace the Size L with Back 3. Following Sarah’s instructions, I traced front and back the same size (L) even though in the past I have needed a smaller front. I knew from before that I needed Back 3. Back 3 has always been the key to fitting the Eureka. I was pleased with the entire video about Fitting the Round Derriere and the next one on Fitting the Generous Derriere. Found my own derriere in the Generous class. This class definitely explains why I have always gone up one size to get enough seating room.


This is not my first go around with this pattern.  I know, without question that I end up making the same adjustment — perhaps in different amounts each time–but the same adjustments over and over.  I doubt that some things about my body are going to change.  Such as I am 5’3″. Patterns are developed for the 5″5-6 woman.  Patterns, this one included, always have too much length.  I can spend time and effort rediscovering the differences  or I can skip to what I know. I did the later.

I folded out 1″ above the top HBL to remove -1″ crotch depth.  I may later remove a 2nd inch but for now this gives me some fabric to put and hold under the elastic until I can rework the back crotch.  I also folded out 1″ length about the Knee.

This of course makes some jogs at these points.  I used my Fashion Ruler to smooth out the jogs.

Next up, I know I want  to add some fit insurance in a few places. Sarah says nothing about this. Before I even cut fabric, I know that I will be lowering and scooping the back crotch as well as fiddling with the front crotch.  If I don’t add the fit insurance now, I will be taping bits to my tissue and making a 2nd muslin in a very short time.  My fit insurance is an additional 1/2″ added to the inseams of both front and back and 1/2″ added to the side seam of only the back.  I traced the pattern in blue. Now I added my fit insurance in RED:

One thing I did, which Sarah says not to to do is add the front fly.

She’s right that it makes for excess bulk. One of the things I struggled with on the 906 Ponte Shorts were those friggin’ huge seam allowances. I real PITA. But I know I will want the fly later when I start sewing real pants. For fitting, I want to pin the pant together at the center front, which I can manage, rather than pin the CB seam, which I will mangle.

The pattern is still rough cut i.e. not to it’s final dimensions when I pin at the HBLS and carefully walk seams adding and removing pins as needed. Sarah does an excellent job of demonstrating this.  I have one additional wrinkle in the process.  Although my inseams are the same width, my side seams will not be.  I added 1/2″ to the back side seam. So when I walked the side seams, I placed the front side seam on top and aligned with the original cutting line.

I’m always amazed at the inaccuracies that appear even though I carefully traced and carefully made adjustments.  Not bad this time.  I trimmed 1/8″ from the leg length at the front hem and again about 1/8″ length at the front side waist.

Now I trim carefully to the final dimensions and I clip each end of the grain and HBL lines.


I am ready for my first muslin.  I select a recent garage sale find. It is an upholstery cotton with the always-missing-from-my-stash, non-stretch feature. I prefer wearing pants of nice denim or woven with a tiny bit of stretch and that is what I buy.  I will probably need to repeat this fitting process for knits at some point because I do wear knits too.  My fabric is a bright print that I thought of using for a blouse. When I picked it up I thought I had 3-4 yards of 36-40″ wide fabric.  When I pre-washed I discovered I had 7 yards of 42″ fabric. I will never use that much for blouses though I do still intend to make a blouse.  It presses easily.  For the muslin, the pretty right side of the fabric will become the inside. The plainer/duller reverse will be fine for all the fitting marks I will need. Before, laying out my pattern pieces, I pin up  the hem on the tissue A hem is not necessary on a muslin and  I just don’t want to fuss with a hem that keeps falls down as  Sarah did during the demo.   I cut around the pattern pieces; then transfer the grainline, HBLS and knee line in red Sharpie. I want to see these lines in the pics I plan to take.

I decide I want a visual reminder of the Fit Insurance I added.  I stitch along the the added SA line and the crotch stitching lines.  I look at the crotch and decide “Nah, I’m not doing all that clipping.”  Hope this isn’t a mistake.  I trimmed 1/4″ from the crotch to have a 3/8″ SA.  This is my standard.  You wouldn’t believe the number of times in recent months I’ve been working with the default 5/8″, that I’ve stitched at  3/8″.  That 1/4″ can really make a difference. I find that the 3/8″ crotch SA easily bends around my body. I have yet to have a fitting or sewing issues due to the 3/8″ SA.  There could be a first time. For now, I am accommodating my Chemo Brain and do things “normal” when I can.

I stitch the fronts and back together after carefully pinning at the HBLS and paying attention to my change seam allowances. Finally 2 hours after I begin, I am ready for pics of my first fitting.

I stress that the time needed is all self-inflicted.  Should you simply measure, select and trace size and start cutting fabric, you’d be at this point far sooner than I.

Now I slipped the muslin on; pulled it up comfortably. Established a temporary waist by tying with 3/8″ elastic — I didn’t have the recommended 1/4″– at my natural waist and then bending side to side.


Eureka Pant

Pants Recap

So the Eureka

by Fit for Art, has been a  pattern. much loved by me.  I remember it as being easy to fit that very first time.  I made pant after pant. I made many variations. Then my enthusiasm wandered or was captured by others’ new releases and I drifted away from using this base entirely.  I turned to now after spending previous months trying to draft my own and adapt nicely fitting RTW to a usable pattern. You see, my issues started last fall, well before the cancer was discovered. I was truly hoping that this easy, versatile pattern would be workable.

Interesting I could get a nice looking muslin

but when I transfer the changes to the tissue and cut another pair, it was a disaster.  Time after time, pant after pant I could fit the front or the back but not both!

I made so many tweaks/changes, I forgot what I did.  After discussing with my Sewing Angel, I decided to stick with an elastic band due to the fact the cancer and all involved was changing my body rapidly and almost daily.  I thought it maybe I could develop a reliable waistband and crotch I could ignore some of the other mess.

I forgot that the other mess included the under-butt wrinkles which was a large part of the reason I wanted newly fitted pants.

Eventually, I did make a few pairs (seen above) that were tolerable. I mean if I dress up and moved about the wrinkles were not so bad and besides the pants felt good. Not too big anywhere because the waist fit keeping fabric up where it should be i.e. tummy and thighs.

With summer rapidly approaching, I switched to sewing shorts.  I opted for an easy wide leg with a 7″ inseam. These are wonderful during the summer.  Quick to sew both because of the much shortened leg length and the waist band.

The mess under the butt tends to just go away but I did have other issues.  Mostly fabric issues. One fabric would work nicely the next would need more ease than I allowed.  Most of all the crotch was still not stable.

Some times it fit nicely. Other times, well it acted oddly. Like I hadn’t just fit it 2 dozen times before.

The biggest solutions for these pants was all the same:

  • Elastic cut to 31″ long–much shorter than my natural waist. But that was the length which would slide up over my hips – with a bit of a pull- and keep the waist in the same place.
  • A big scoop in the back crotch.

I declared a couple of the above wearable. I mean I’m at home most of the time. I really don’t have to worry about how good I look, especially while going through chemo. Besides, overall they had the same improved criteria of whatever was in the closet i.e. the waist doesn’t need to left open so it slides downward. Also in time, I included enough ease that both pants and shorts were comfortable.

But I still wasn’t satisfied and would have gone on tweaking and pulling my few head hairs over the Eureka had not I stumbled across Judy Kessinger. But that is the topic for the next post.

Eureka Pant

First Good Fabric Eureka Pant

I spent a puzzling week working on the fit of this first pair. They never looked as good as the muslin. But as you can see, when I’m standing normally and dressed, they look OK

My fabric is a heavy ponte purchased from a new-new-to-me source,  I particularly liked their descriptions which included the GSM (a weight reference).  I purchased several ponte roma swatches and bought this navy which is so dark it is almost black. It was also the heaviest weight they had at the time. I love its feel.  It is spongy and thick. Well, not fleece thick but thick compared to other fabrics. But it may be part of the issues I had during fitting. Also contributing was my desire for a Yoga Pant instead of the gathered, elasticized waistband of the muslin.  (Lots of stuff around my waist on that one.) Finally on the muslin I had offset the back side seam to have sufficient hip room and was still having issues with the CB pulling downward. Thus my decision to go up one, back-size without making another muslin.

I transferred the fitting changes to  the tissue. Copied the tissue and then cut a copy of it. I measured down 3″ along front and back waistband and removed that much all across. I created the Yoga waistband by measuring along the pant’s new upper edge and then cutting rectangles the length of that edge by 6.5″ wide.


No matter what I did, I could not remove the 2 diagonal wrinkles.

Believe me, I tweaked every seam.  Basted in changes and then removed same. Since the sideways, side seam, fish eye dart worked wonders on the muslin, I tried those again too. No dice. The diagonals from hip to inseam remain.

Before tackling the back wrinkles,  I struggled fitting the waistband.  After the pant was basted together including the waistband, I had removed the elastic from the muslin and threaded the same piece through my new Yoga waistband. When I tried the pant on, the waist would slowly sink so the top of the waistband was sitting on my high hip.  I wanted it just below the waist (like jeans). I fooled with that for the first entire session. Then emailed my sewing angel to ask her advice, who told me the fabric was too heavy for the elastic. When I returned for the next sewing session, I combined her idea with mine. My idea was a wider elastic. Her’s was pulling the elastic tight around the hip (or tummy if larger) and using that length.  I used a 2″ elastic and pulled it tight. Cut elastic that length + a seam allowance. At the try on the back was still too loose. Also there was just so much fabric at my waist. A yoga pant should be fairly smooth across the waistband–even smoother than below. I trimmed 1″ from both sides of the waistband (mine is in 2 pieces front and back so total of 4″ waistband length removed). I also removed 1/2″ from each side of the back, waist elastic.  Immediate improvement. But I did find that the back would still slowly pull down. Having already tried everything Fit For Art Recommends, I pulled out the Palmer Pletch pant fitting book. Their suggestion was adding to the front crotch. The back diagonals were unaffected and the front looks no nicer now than it did in the muslin.

The photo above? Is one the best of the pics.  While the back didn’t pull immediately down, it would slowly. Concurrently, the front would hike upwards almost to my bra. I don’t think I’ve seen a fix for that.

My fabric has 40% ways stretch both ways. The muslin, made in non-stretch fabric has excess ease.   I had expected to remove some circumference and maybe a little length in the crotch depth. I can pinch out about 4″ ease. But if I baste the seams deeper, multiple diagonal lines develop. The waist doesn’t stay at the waist. It see-saws back and forth as described above. I’m sure my still expanded tummy and waist contribute most of the issues but how much is a result of the heavy weight fabric? How much is from the real stretch of the fabric? Is the excess ease an issue?

After more than a week, I dressed and took photos. Because of my typical dressing habits and how I stand these pants are wearable. Only trouble is, they are so heavy I won’t be able to wear them all day until November (when the cold weather returns).  I spent Sunday afternoon completely finishing, took new pics and hung them in with the winter clothes.

Definitely think I made one change too many.  I am taking a short break from pants. But when I return, I will make a pair like the muslin in non-stretch fabric except using Back 3 large. I need to make these changes slowly so I can understand where things went so wrong. Hopefully by November, my body will have settled and  I will have this figured out.


Eureka Pant

Muslin #3: Fitting Eureka a 3rd Time

I promised a continuation and here it is some 2 months/8 weeks later. The chemo was tough on me. So much so that I couldn’t do anything the first week after chemo and very little the 2nd week. It would be the 3rd week before I was functioning well enough to go downstairs to my sewing room. I’m a little confused as to the timing of events here but basically, I couldn’t try on the old muslin because I had deconstructed it. I compared the tissue to the muslin which convinced me I had transferred all the fitting changes. I measured the waist and thought there would be enough circumference. So  I selected a nice winter fabric (polyester moleskin) and cut a pair of pants. Basted them together and tried them on. OMG they were huge. Confused, I compared my tissue to the pattern. With the changes to my preferred seam allowances and the fitting changes, there is so much differences I just couldn’t tell what I had done. Plus I’m having chemo brain and can’t think. So I decide on a new muslin and fitting the Eureka for a 3rd time.  Should be easy right?

I started by taking my measurements. To my surprise my waist had increased substantially while my tummy and hips shrunk. Thinking I may have measured in the wrong places,I measured again while looking in the mirror to be sure.  So with new confirmed measurements in hand, I check the sizing charts again. I should fit a medium. Even with the much expanded waist, the medium should fit. I trace the pattern and all it’s markings. Shorten the leg 1″, then measure the waist. Ahhh, I’m not so sure the med waist is going to work. My measurements say I don’t need more circumference anywhere else, so I add 1/2″ at the side front and back only at the waist and tapering to 0 by the first HBL.  Select another yellow cotton twill (30 years ago, I must have really loved yellow pants) and cut Muslin #3. Basted it together and then….

It was time to go to the hospital for the full monty aka Full Hysterectomy.  Mind you I didn’t get all the above done in a day or two. I could work for only an hour at a time and as usual did my other chores. I actually could have started fitting but decided to wait until they had removed all the stuff in my abdomen.  I was under the delusion I might be smaller upon my return from the hospital. After the hospital I spent 2 weeks not doing much. Last week, I was able to return to the sewing room, but for only a half hour at a time.

Since Muslin 3 was basted together and my tummy looked no smaller, I decided just to start fitting.  I made several fitting adjustments but each one at a time.  So the waist was too big. I shortened the waistband. Then there was excess ease in the front. I took a 1/2″ tuck along the grainline. Following that, I decided it was really too long in the crotch. I don’t remember that happening before but I took a 1/2″ tuck horizontally across all 4 pieces. Then it looked too tight across the seat so I offset the side seams. Finally I take a 1/2″ tuck from side seam to mid way  across both front and back. Looks like a fish-eye dart but horizontally and at the side seam. Through it all, even though some improvement was seen, the fit wasn’t right. Especially the back X wrinkles:

Now understand, this was not a one day process. 5 changes took 5 days. On the 5th day, I was flummoxed. I gave serious thought. The X wrinkles had not happened with the previous muslin, why now? On the 6th day, I asked “Or did it happen now with Muslin III.”  I looked at original fitting, the one before I started marking changes:

It’s big all over, but not real X wrinkles

See? Big and droopy, alright, but those aren’t X wrinkles in the back. When did they start?  I look back through my fitting pics finding they started when I decreased the circumference of the front:

See. Front looks much nicer. Back would be Ok if not for the X wrinkle.  So did decreasing the circumference cause the X wrinkles? It must have because this was the 2nd change (decreasing the waistband length was first) and the first time the X wrinkles appeared.

At this point, I am having another problem. My waist is changing daily.  Some fittings I’m taking the waist in. Others I’m letting it out. Who can fit pants with an unstable waistline?  I had already planned to make my first real pair into yoga pants. That made my decision easy. Fit now with elastic waist. Try for classic fit later when my body settles.

OK decision to move to elastic waist pants made but I still have the issue of bad fitting.  I decide to do a Betzina pant fitting. I remove all the fitting adjustments and waist darts.  Then I hike it up and secure with elastic at the waist. Standing in front of the mirror, I pull up until the crotch feels comfortable and then pull up the sides until I can’t see the massive drapes. Before taking pics, I draw a line at the bottom of the elastic.

That front is not nice, plus I have pulled the crotches up too high but it tells me what I want to know:  Without the reduced front circumference, the back looks OK. Not great. Not fantastic but wearable.

I measure the distance from waist to the line drawn beneath the elastic in several places.  I realize the crotch length is too long by little more than 1″.  The sides  are another 1″ (total 2″) too long. I make a 5/8″ tuck horizontally across all 4 pieces on the 2nd HBL. Then  I make a 5/8″ fish-eye dart along the 3rd HBL.  I cut an waistband really an elastic casing, which I stitch to the top of the muslin and then insert elastic before trying the muslin on and taking pics.

This particular cotton twill does not make a gorgeous pant. It hasn’t been carefully pressed or lightly starched either. But it tells me exactly what I want to know. There are no X wrinkles on the back and, surprisingly both sides and front look nicer. Not fantastic but wearable.

So I’m calling this fit “Close Enough”.  I’m proceeding to make real pants.

Eureka Pant

Eureka! Again.

. II need to start talking about this happy journey way back in November 2018. At the time, I was working with the Halston pants.  I had such high hopes for creating a pattern from them because the RTW pant looked fairly nice on me. I could see a few  tweaks were needed; or so I thought. After ripping the finished pair apart, creating a pattern and beginning muslins, I learned that it wasn’t quite that easy. As a matter of fact, every change I made that should have improved the fit, created issues some place else. I was totally flummoxed.

Along about that time Rae Cumbie made a post about fitting the Eureka and in particular things not to do. I read the post and thought “Why did I stop using my Eureka?”  At one time I had used the Eureka pattern exclusively. Made many adaptations. Then new pants patterns were marketed. Even though I didn’t understand what made the Eureka fit when other patterns wouldn’t, I couldn’t resist trying the new pants patterns, always hoping for the best. Hoping for the miracle of pants that fit. I thought back to the time when I first fit the Eureka.  I remember it as being easy . I decided to pull out my copy and  use it again. Have to confess that I have purged patterns, shuffled patterns and reorganized them. Which resulted in my not finding my copy of Fit For Art’s Eureka pant.  So I bought another.  Someday, I will find I have 2 copies of the Eureka.

And that’s where this post starts. Er, when the new copy of the Eureka arrived which was within a week. I read the directions carefully.  I had already reviewed my experience post and discovered my  issues at the first fitting of the  Eureka were all self-inflicted. So, I read the instructions carefully and chose to make a Med size with Back #2. I chose my fabric based mostly on the fact that it is light-colored, the right weight for pants and oh yeah, I’m never going to sew pants from this 30-year-old  fabric again.  (At one time, I made pastel colored pants and would have loved a yellow pant. My life style has since changed and this fabric languishes.)

I got muslin 1 done:

Muslin 1 Back


I examined the back carefully. I begin with the back because the front and sides of nearly every pant pattern tend to be near perfect. It is the back which tortures me.  Overall, I’d say the back looked a bit tight and small. That’s typical for me.  Usually my solution is to slice the back vertically along the grain line and separate the 2 halves to add an inch of ease.  Unfortunately, that also makes the hem circumference much larger than I want. So I didn’t immediately take action.  I continued to evaluate the back. I think there is some excess ease around the thighs (also typical for me) but this is a woven, non-stretch fabric. A little extra ease could be a good thing.

I looked at the back photo while reading and examining the diagrams carefully and in detail. I’m not posting any pics from the instructions because well it is copyrighted but also this is the kind of information that works best when you are also working a test garment (muslin) made from the pattern.  Just like many other Indy pattern companies, Fit For Art has their own philosophy for fitting pants and they may disagree sharply with the another company’s procedure. Sometimes I think, I’m not a novice why can’t I just work with what I know to be true. But other times, like now, I think I paid a lot for their opinion. It worked last time (after I undid my preliminary changes). I thought, I should at least give their instructions a real chance.   Anyway, after careful study of my back side, the booklet drawings and text, I decided to follow the recommendation of choosing the next size larger back.  For me that was   Back 3 in size medium.

So I made Muslin 1.5 i.e.  I cut Medium, Back 3 from a new piece of fabric and replace the back two but kept  the front and waistband of muslin 1.



Muslin 1.5

The muslin is a little long in the leg for me and I’m standing in such a manner as to introduce a drag line on the right side, BUT It’s been a long time since I’ve seen such a nice fitting back on me.

My Sewing Angel’s advice:  “Copy that crotch to poster board so you can use it everywhere.”  She finally confess her secret for great fitting pants nearly every time:  Several years ago she was carefully and perfectly fit. My Sewing Angel copied her crotch to poster board and transfers it to every pant pattern she tries.  When I think about it, she makes perfect sense.  No matter the pant pattern, it is still going to have to fit my body space.  Why not start fitting by using the crotch I know works with my body?  I do this with tops. I start a new top/blouse pattern by first copying my sloper/block. I line up center front/back and superimposed the shape of the new pattern onto a copy of my sloper.  By starting with my top my sloper, I have already adapted for my size, my shoulder slope, my round back, and rounded tummy. Why have I not been doing something similar with pant patterns?  I think  I never truly understood that I needed not only the circumference, but the circumference divided for my body (on skirts/pants I am larger in back than in front) and that the body space has to fit.  Maybe I haven’t used a pant sloper because I haven’t had one. OK, probably the real reason is I hoped all these designers were telling the truth when they said they’ve made all the changes for your perfect fitting pant. So sue me for being gullible, hopeful and believing.

With the back fitting pretty nice, I evaluated the front and sides of Muslin 1.5. Which oddly don’t look quite as nice as the back.


This seems typical to me, i.e. the back needed a change to the crotch so the circumference would be sufficient. But then my smaller needs a little less circumference. Both front and sides need some length adjustments. (It could be depth (darting).)  I made a few changes. Offset the waistband wich shortened the crotch depth and took a little ease from the front. I was pleased with muslin 1.5. Not saying it couldn’t be tweaked a little more, just that I was pleased with where I finished.


And that’s where I stopped pant fitting In November. At which point, DH and I drove off to Sioux Falls  a 3 day anniversary celebration 42 years is amazing. It’s worth celebrating!  Instead of celebrating in style, we made the Emergency Room trip and came home deflated by the diagnoses.  BUT the day we arrived in Sioux Falls,  I had time to shop at JoAnn’s.  I was impressed.  In the front were 2 full shelves of good pant fabrics.  I was overwhelmed with the selection.  Such richness had not been available to me in some time.  I buy pant fabric off the Internet by guess and by golly; always planing an alternative if the fabric is really not pant-worthy. JA’s pants offerings used to be 1/4 that volume and all in basic black.  I think the buying team has changed. Maybe they realized they are America’s leading Brick and Mortar store.  I quit drooling and decided to stick to my plan which was buying blue fabrics. I never seem to have blue pant fabrics have in my stash.  I went back to the hotel with 3 gorgeous slack fabrics.  And then it all went smash.

To be continued……