Pants fitting help needed:-)

October 18, 2014


I have sewn up a toile for a pair of pants from Vogue 6098  and I’d really like some opinions on fit. The fit feels as if the front is really flat and  looks odd. What alterations should I be making for a good fit? I have had such a disaster with jeans and slacks in the past ! rtw is just no good:-)

I was also hoping to add a fly zipper and perhaps a shaped waistband if it all goes ok!

p.s sorry the photos are a bit blurry.



fitting help needed

  1. Hi, I would make them from a thick stable knit, like 60s ski pants. Or fabric with stretch. Then you can make them more form-fitting. If you google “Laura Petrie” (a 60s TV character played by Mary Tyler Moore) you’ll usually see her wearing this style. She was the first TV “housewife” to wear slim pants instead of a big puffy dress.

  2. I am far from a pants fitting expert, but you definitely have extra fabric that needs to be eliminated in the seat and upper thigh in back. It looks like that little pucker in the front crotch that you’re getting is probably a related issue. I’ve fixed similar issues before by taking out some of the crotch depth (I can never remember the difference between crotch length and depth). Essentially I needed to remove the excess from the inseam and center back seam. There are a million tutorials out there for making these sorts of alterations. Maybe someone else on here can chime in and point you in a good direction?

  3. hmmm… I agree with Evie that you have some issues at the back as well as the one you mention at the front.
    Before you start making alterations though, consider what kind of fit you want to achieve. This is a great blog post on the fit of vintage trousers: http://wearinghistoryblog.com/2014/09/a-primer-1930s-1950s-trousers-pants-for-women/
    Which means that, if (like I think) you are using a vintage 1950’s/60’s pattern, it will have a lower rise than you would expect based on experience with modern trousers.

    Looking at your pictures, there seems to be a bit too much room horizontally in the crotch curve, which would explain the strange ‘puckering’ at the front. At the back, there is also too much material over your lower bottom and thighs. Be careful with alterations though, and do one thing at the time. I know that makes the whole process more time- and fabric consuming but it’s the only way to keep track of what you’re really doing and what will work.
    This is a good source for information on trouser fitting issues and possible solutions: http://www.coletterie.com/tutorials-tips-tricks/the-colette-patterns-pants-fitting-cheatsheet

  4. I feel your pain. I have had so many problems sewing vintage trousers! I agree with the comments above, but wanted to add a little more advice of my own. First, I use modern fabrics with stretch for anything except wide leg trousers. Although clearly not authentic, I can’t get a fit I think looks attractive on me without it. Lightweight stretch denim is my best pants friend. Second, I just made the pants from Gertie’s new book, Gertie Sews Vintage Casual, and the fit is amazing! I used the very clear, illustrated instructions on pant fitting to modify the pattern slightly for my figure and sewed up the best fitting pair of pants ever! Plus, the book includes shorts, slim pants, jeans, and wide leg pant variations. From now on, I am just going to use my vintage patterns for styling and details and stick to this basic pattern. If you are a pear, you might want to try it, too, if not, I recommend it just for the alterations section.

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