Tuesday, March 13, 2012

pleated trousers

We are making very slow progress, because our fittings are requested but not being scheduled. Today though, we did get one of our guys and I thought I'd show you his trousers.
These are a first baste up, I cut right into the fabric for him, (after I checked that his measurements were current and correct.)

an aside about measurements: It makes me frustrated to be met with resistance when requesting updated measurements. I can't stand it when people say, "Oh, he never changes". Last week was one of those situations where I had cut into the real fabric for someone who I hadn't seen or made anything for in at least five years, only to find that he had lost 5 inches from his waist!! Waste indeed!

One thing about these trousers that you probably cannot see from this photo is the correction for bow legs. Which means the correction worked! Yeah!
The correction involved cutting the pattern at the knee level and opening the outseam about 1/4" and overlapping(shortening) the inseam by the same amount. So far so good.
Now for the dilemmas. The crease line. After altering the pattern, the centre of the lower leg runs off grain, and in a plain fabric you can't tell, but in a stripe it is obvious. I thought that since there were pleats, I could use this to my advantage.

Most of the other trousers I have made for this show have outward pleats, but I found that I couldn't keep the crease on grain with an outward pleat. If the crease was on grain through the upper trouser, the lower leg was off, but if I lay the pattern out with the lower leg (from the knee to hem) on grain (stripe) I could convert these to forward pleats.
Forward pleats naturally swing the centre front off grain, which isn't great with striped fabric, so I usually try to avoid that.

If you look closely at the stripes, you can see how the front has gone off grain, but I think in the end it is less obvious than the crease line not following a stripe in the fabric.

OK, so one more outstanding first fitting to go. Maybe I'll get that tomorrow? Scheduling is a nightmare with a cast in repertory, everyone's needs are priorities, but we only have a few more weeks to get this one ready for tech dress.
Tomorrow I'll be marking the alterations to the suit jacket that goes with these trousers, as well as the sparkly shirt and trousers which this actor/dancer wears. More to follow as we get things on their way.


  1. First reaction : bow legs, on checks ? That's tricky. And very well done indeed. Then, I read the explanation, and that is clever.

  2. Thanks, designers pick fabric for character/design without knowledge of figure issues that we end up having to solve.

  3. Thanks, designers pick fabric for character/design without knowledge of figure issues that we end up having to solve.

  4. Wow, those are some nice trousers.

  5. Thanks, I thought they turned out very well.
    It makes me wonder when the current fashion of really low rise skinny legged trousers will end, cause these look much more flattering IMHO.