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Tips & Techniques > Contoured Waistband that fits YOU perfectly

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Posted by: Annette Wright
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Posted on: 3/29/10 7:31 PM
Review Rating: Helpful by 5 people   Very Helpful by 27 people   
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I had problems with the contoured waistbands of slacks being too curved. I'm fairly straight. Using this technique I found out my front waist was quite flat but my back waist very curved. My right hip is even curvier than my left hip.

In your undergarments, lightly wrap a piece of very thin interfacing around your abdomen. You could also use tissue paper, or even toilet paper I would guess.

I started wrapping around my waist with masking tape, about 1" wide. Heck, it doesn't matter exactly, this isn't a duct tape dummy, just a mold of your waistline.

Don't make it too tight or too loose, but seriously an inch more or less isn't what determines the "shape" of your waist.

Give yourself about 3-4" of height. Determine where you want the top of your waistband to sit, put a piece of elastic around your waist (have it level) and then mark the top of the waistband. Make marks for the CF, CB, and sides.

Cut it off right at the center front.

Now it's fun to take your tape measure, check the full waist size, check if the sides are close. They won't be exact. If there isn't a major discrepancy just average it out and you have your waistband.

If there is a big discrepancy you might consider making separate pieces for the left or right waistband sections.

I then drew in the top of the waistband, smoothing out the curves a bit, drew it 2" thick, then traced my waistband and added the seam allowances or front closure spaces based on the pattern piece I was copying.

You can use this as a two piece waistband, or 4 piece waistband, or 3 piece if you choose. Just use it with the original pattern piece (for shape and style) but now it fits you.

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15 Comments
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frame said... (4/13/10 8:49 PM) Reply
This is a great tip and a very clever idea. Thank you for sharing.
ryansmumAria said... (4/12/10 9:37 PM) Reply
Brilliant! Thank you for sharing this great idea.
quathy said... (3/30/10 6:11 PM) Reply
Clever! Great idea!
waltzqueen said... (3/30/10 11:42 AM) Reply
THANK YOU! Contour waists on retail clothes fit me the best, but I hadn't the courage to sew one myself. Now I will!!
waltzqueen said... (3/30/10 11:42 AM) Reply
THANK YOU! Contour waists on retail clothes fit me the best, but I hadn't the courage to sew one myself. Now I will!!
elsew said... (3/30/10 9:11 AM) Reply
Kudos on this one...you are a genius. Thanks so much for doing the head work for us! Great tip!
OP Gal said... (3/30/10 9:04 AM) Reply
Oops, duplicate post.
OP Gal said... (3/30/10 9:03 AM) Reply
Great tip. Very clever of you to think of this and figure out how to do it.
becca a said... (3/30/10 8:46 AM) Reply
Thank you so much for this tip. Armed with this, I can tackle contoured waistbands.
Karine said... (3/30/10 8:29 AM) Reply
This is great - thanks! I, too, struggle with contoured waistbands. I can never seem to get them just right, particularly since I lost my waist!
sewme47 said... (3/30/10 1:55 AM) Reply
Cool. I think I'll try this!
deesews said... (3/30/10 1:27 AM) Reply
What a brainstorm! Thanks for sharing!
Gingersnap1932 said... (3/29/10 11:59 PM) Reply
what a great idea - I am very lopsided; I once did a contoured waistband and it fit beautifully but was never able to repeat it on another garment - this should help.
RadarRadiance said... (3/29/10 11:13 PM) Reply
Very interesting idea to try. I am not pleased with most pattern waistbands. Great idea!
Orsi said... (3/29/10 10:57 PM) Reply
Great tip. I thought of trying something like that, but never did. I'll use this method next time I sew something for myself.
 
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