Muslin-ing Pants - Part 2

IMG_0054My saga with fitting pants continued over the weekend. I was very tired of making muslins, trying to fit them and failing… yet, I refused to give up. I would like to say I still refuse to give up, but I need to take a break as pant fitting was killing my sewing mojo. In the end of it all, I finished with 6 muslins and a decent fit in one pair of pants! At the end of the last blog post I ordered the Sewing Pants that Fit book which has yet to arrive, but I am sure it will be here any day now! I can’t wait to get the book and read it, look through it and see what I can learn from it. But in the meantime I was too impatient not to go forward on my own and with the help of the internet. When I went back to my sewing dungeon, I decided to start with my second muslin. It was a size smaller than the third, but the fit issues were similar. Since I was looking for a tight-er fitting pair of pants, I decided muslin 2 was the one I should start off with again. I tired it on and as I remembered it wasn’t great. The front looked good with no issues, but the back… I apologize ahead of time for the bum shots, but I think they are important here since I am trying to show the issues and my journey onto how I resolved them (hopefully eventually I will!).
muslin 2 Muslin 2
The upper back fits me well, it’s my upper thigh and lower back areas that were not looking great. I mean I think some wrincklage (I am sure that’s a technical term) should be there since I am planning to move and sit in those pants but not like what I was seeing. I tried letting the pants out on the side but it didn’t resolve my issue. As I’ve mentioned in my previous post, I have a big bum, so I knew I would need to extend and slightly deepen my back seat curve to fit over it . For my next muslin I did just that. You can’t see it in the pictures, but at this point I started to fear that I will run out of my 10 meters of muslin fabric I bought a while back, so I only cut my pants # 4 down to slightly below the knee.
Muslin 3 Muslin 4
This pair started to fit better! The wrinkles were still there though but the pants weren't digging into my bum as much. For my muslin #5, I actually slashed my pattern at the deepest part of my back inseam curve and spread it by ¾”. It definitely started to fit better and I was happy that I was getting somewhere, yet I was still getting wrinkles under my bum. I must say that this was a Friday night and the he pants were driving me to drink. I do not know how it occurred to me exactly, I must have been staring at my back from the side thinking what should I do to fix the problem and I noticed that I have pretty prominent butt cheeks that kinda stick out there. As I found out days later, there is a term for that – dropped seat. It sounds like something that would occur to a toddler who’s diaper is full and dropping… definitely not the way I want to think or refer to my backside. So to summarize, my seat is full AND dropping. Bam!
Muslin 6 Muslin 6
Anyways, in the end I ended up scooping my back seat curve to almost straight angle. I drew a very rough illustration of what the pattern for the back leg ended up looking for me, just so it is clearer. The black line is what a normal pattern would look like, and by normal I mean what it looks like out of the package, because likely that curve will have to change in some way for everyone. The red line is what I ended up doing to it to make it look okay on me. Yeah! Full dropped seat! curve My final, for now, muslin # 6 still is not perfect, but I think it is as close to perfect as I can get it right now. As a matter of fact I was so happy with it that I proceeded to make a pair of pants! They turned out beautifully! I apologize for not taking a back shot, I got too excited and forgot about it. However, my learning did not stop here. I wish it did! I was so ready to graduate from pant making. What I learned next was that fashion fabric behaves very differently than muslin. I am sure most people know it, but I somehow managed to ignore it until pant 1the pants situation. My pants fit great once I finished them! The fabric was a suiting blend, granted I didn’t know what exactly was in that blend since I bought it years ago, but I knew it wasn’t a stretch kind. I pulled it on all directions to test. Yet, as the day went on my pants grew looser on me. Not badly! But still at the end of the day I could easily take off at least ¼” from each side to make them fit the way I want them too. I still may do just that, but for now I will leave my pants alone. So far, I’ve come out of this experience with a decent looking muslin and a decent pattern for pants. As well as realization that every single pair of pants I make will have to be fabric fitted prior to finishing just because I imagine every fabric type would behave differently. I wouldn’t say it is an astonishing success, but I still think of this experience as success and I am happy with how it turned out. Here are some close ups of the pant pockets and fly, just cause I'm so proud of them! pant front pant back I think I may move the back pockets out a little bit more since they seem like they are a tad too close to each other. Other than that, I am almost ready for another pair of pants, but I think I will take a break from them for a few days... Love, Anya
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