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Message Board > Pattern Modifications, Design Changes & Pattern Drafting > Tapering already constructed pant leg

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Tapering already constructed pant leg
Is there a method, or do I just go like gang busters
MissCelie
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MissCelie  Friend of PR
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Subject: Wide leg pants to more narrow Date: 4/22/08 9:14 AM

Last summer I made these pants from Simplicity 4237
Love them, fit well, but are too short to wear with anything but the flattest of heels.

Yesterday, as they were swinging around my ankles like the liberty bell, I decided it was too much. I'm thinking that if I narrow the leg and shorten them, they could be nice cropped work pants. I think if I don't take them in and just shorten them, they are going to look dumb. Or can I just take them in and keep them this length?

Any suggestions or tips? Or, do I just need to start pinning and see what happens? Do I take in on both sides or one side? And how much shorter would you make them to keep them work (suit and tie) appropriate. I was thinking just below the calf?

I know, those are a lot of questions!
-- Edited on 4/22/08 9:15 AM --

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Cidell
www.missceliespants.com

EleanorSews
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In reply to MissCelie


Subject: Wide leg pants to more narrow Date: 4/22/08 9:21 AM

You need to take them in from both sides, otherwise they will hang weirdly. Take a look at the original pattern piece too. Is there more fullness to the side or is it evenly distributed? For example, you may find you need to take in 2 inches at the outside seam and only 1 on the inside. You can determine a bit about the proportion if you find the center of the front and back pant legs. Another approach would be to select a point from which you want to straightne the legs and drawn a straight line or even a tapered line (you might begin with drawing the straight line and use it as a guide for a taper).

The most important thing is to keep your straight of grain in the center of the pant leg. You throw it off if you take it in from only one side. HTH

Eleanor

PS They would make cute capris. You and they look terrific! What a great fit!
-- Edited on 4/22/08 9:23 AM --

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Sherril Miller
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Date: 4/22/08 9:32 AM

Cidell, I would unstitch the side seams and the inseams after pressing in a center crease. Then use a pattern with the leg width you want and place that over these matching the crease line with the crease line you fold into the desired pattern.

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petro
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Date: 4/22/08 10:09 AM

just before you do that Cidell, from the photo it looks as though you might have an inch or perhaps one and a quarter inch hem. have you thought of unpicking it and facing them up with a spare bit of cotton fabric, taking the teeniest of seam allowance? I've done this so many times on shrunk pants - yes I know, why don't I pre-shrink my fabric - it works well, the weight of the facing is good, and you can run a strip of interfacing along as well so the seam turnings and the hem stitches are less visible.

MissCelie
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In reply to petro


Date: 4/22/08 10:17 AM

Quote: petro
it looks as though you might have an inch or perhaps one and a quarter inch hem.

I have literally no hem. I used hem tape to let it out to about 1/4 inch The pants were a cropped pattern that I lengthened on my own. I just didn't make it long enough.

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Cidell
www.missceliespants.com

Patti B
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Date: 4/22/08 10:56 AM

They are so darling as they are. But if was originally a cropped design, perhaps they will look just as cool shortened?

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Patti

R-r-r-ripping my way to fitting success

Debbie Cook
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In reply to MissCelie


Date: 4/22/08 11:15 AM

Quote:
I think if I don't take them in and just shorten them, they are going to look dumb


Just my cents, but I don't think they'd look dumb just shorter and not narrower, if you make them significantly shorter ... like a split skirt, just at your knee level. I don't know that cropped/capri length is dressy or goes with a jacket/tie.

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ladybegood
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In reply to MissCelie


Date: 4/22/08 12:21 PM

I'd start with narrowing first, and then just pin up the hem to get the right length. For narrowing, I'd look at the original pattern piece to see if it is flared evenly at both sides. I'd measure how much it flares from the grainline at both sides, but ultimately, I think you just need to get your pins out and and go by what the fabric wants to do.
-- Edited on 4/22/08 12:24 PM --

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Nancy K
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In reply to MissCelie


Date: 4/22/08 1:31 PM

I just did this to a pattern the other day, but it is the same for a pair of already constructed pants.
You need to take in the same amt. in the outseam and the inseam at the hem. Before you start mark the knee, because the outseam and inseam have to be the same here too. If you take in 1" on each inseam and outseam hem, than draw a line to the inseam. Where it crosses the knee, measure this amount and mark the same amount in on the outseam. The line up from the hem has to cross this point. If the leg is unbalanced it will twist. The line you draw needs to be blended at the knee so that you have a nice gradual curve.

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Irene

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Date: 4/22/08 1:47 PM

These are such nice pants! One way to use the fullness might be to make pleats or tucks on the outside, like Marcy Tilton did with Vogue 8397, while straightening ("un-belling") on the inseam. This is not as professional-looking as you might like, but it would make the most of the current length.

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