Saturday, April 30, 2016

Pants Fit: Part I

Throughout the years, I have tried many different methods of pant fitting in an attempt to make pants that fit me nicely.  I have taken many online classes.  I have gone to seminars.  I have taken every pant fitting class offered at the sewing expos I have attended.  Each class deepened my understanding of pant fitting and why pants don't fit me well.  Despite all my efforts, I could not make pants that fit me properly.  My problem is that I have too much fabric below the derriere.  There have been times where I got so exasperated that I just put the whole thing aside and picked it up much later.

By far the method that worked best for me was a pant fitting class offered some time ago by the NJ Chapter of the ASDP (Association of Sewing and Design Professionals) taught by Karen Bengtson (member of the Colorado Chapter).  Karen based her techniques on the Joyce Murphy method of pants fitting using Joyce Murphy's pant block.


Karen had a "test pant" of each size of the pant block.  She had us try on the test pant that came closest to our size and then "draped" them on us.  She took it in here and there until she was satisfied with the resulting fit.  She measured the adjustments and had us record them.

We then traced Joyce Murphy's pant block and transferred the recorded adjustments to the pattern we had traced.  We then cut the pants out in fabric and sewed them.  It was a 3 day class well worth the time and effort.

Goodness - they had a nice fit!  Just a little bit of wrinkling below the derriere on the left (my left hip is lower) but it doesn't bother me at all.  Woo hoo!


And now I am a happy camper!


Karen Bengtson still does pant fitting sessions so if you are interested, do contact her by emailing her at Karenssewunique at gmail dot com.  If you want to try the method on your own, you can certainly do so.  Check out Joyce Murphy's website where you can purchase the pant block.  Joyce wrote 3 articles for Threads magazine which will assist you with fitting the pants:  Issues 119, 122 and 139.  By studying these articles, you can try her techniques and methods and see if they work for you.  (By the way, I have no affiliate relationships with either Karen or Joyce.)

Joyce Murphy's pant block uses a European cut.  I notice that the pattern has a different crotch shape and different crotch lengths for the front and back pattern pieces than do the Big 4.  For my next post, I am going to explore why I think her pant block worked for me.

Until next time, Happy Sewing!

21 comments:

  1. Those look great, Tomasa. Congratulations!

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  2. Everything about these looks just perfect. I totally agree that this is a pattern block that works for you and having someone fit it for you is half the battle. I shall look forward to seeing pair No. 2! Fantastic fit!

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    1. Thank you Dawn! Keeping my fingers crossed that the next pair will fit as nicely. I plan to use a different fabric and leg shape on my next pair.

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  3. WOW Tomasa those pants fit amazingly well! Really perfect!!! I'm jealous!!! :) I think that pants that fit is like the holy grail of sewing. I'm interested to read your next post about why your pants block worked for you.

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    1. Thank you Kyle! I agree with you about pants fit. They are such an easy garment to sew but boy are they a puzzle to fit. I happen to like the fit of your Mimi G. pants - beautiful!

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  4. Unbelievable! The fit is superb!! I'm interested in reading your next post as well and will check out the links you shared.

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    1. Thank you so much! I am happy with the fit. When I put them on, I gasped because I couldn't believe it...after so many years of attempts. Do look for the Threads articles by Joyce - very interesting.

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  5. You certainly nail the fit of your pants Tomasa!

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    1. Thank you Faye. I am pleased. I hope I can repeat this in a different style of pants.

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  6. Your parents look fantastic, Tomasa! I will look into Joyce Murphy 's block and articles.

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    1. Thank you! Joyce's articles were excellent. I think you will enjoy reading them.

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    2. Hmm, I recycled all my Threads mags a few months ago because I had not looked at them in ages. Ooops. I didn't feel like paying for them again, so instead I looked at Suzy Furrer's craftsy class on drafting pants. The section on fit adjustments was really informative. Have you seen that one? I look forward to more posts on pants fitting!

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    3. I have not purchased the Suzy Furrer pant class but I just took a look and it seems very interesting. I am happy with the fit of my pants but it nevertheless seems like a very informative class, especially the section on using the sloper to draft a cigarette pant or trouser. I am working on the next post and hope to post it soon - hope I don't disappoint!

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  7. Fabulous fitting pants Tomasa!! I would be a happy customer too!

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    1. **I meant "camper" LOL!**

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    2. Yes, I am happy either way lol :)

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  8. Wow, amazing! I really love the pants fit you! The waist and hips seem to fit you perfectly.

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    1. Thank you so much! I am pleased with the fit.

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  9. Joyce called me this morning and shared the link. You do look great in your pants!
    love hearing every ones comments!

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    1. Thank you Karen! I wouldn't have these great pants and pants pattern without having attended your wonderful class!

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