• Kerri

Perfect Fit Bottoms

Updated: Sep 14, 2020

Adjust bottoms for a perfect fit every time!




















Finding RTW pants and shorts that fit perfectly is not easy, and rare. You search high and low, only to be left disappointed. Until you turn to making your own! Have you made a bottoms pattern with high hopes only to be left disappointed, again? Well, you are not alone.


There are many elements to a bottoms design. And every bottoms pattern varies just as much as our bottoms 😉 Do not despair! There are many adjustments you can make to your test fit to ensure a perfectly fitting bottom. Remember, these garments cover a big portion of our bodies and all those parts are very differently shaped! Think tummies to ankles… AND these parts change shape when we move and sit. So, start with a test fit from your pattern size.


Use this guide to make adjustments to any areas you see a problem with. This guide is not a full list of adjustments that can be made but are the most common ones.

Bottoms are designed with some wearing ease, whether they are tight-fitting or loose. This is because we need some room for all the movements we perform. Expect at least some lines and excess fabric in your finished garment (unless being unable to move is your thing!).


Of course, you can go ahead and make your pattern without a test fit and make alterations. This can get very tedious and time consuming. It is also difficult to mirror alterations to each pant/ short piece unless your body shape actually requires either side to be different. Which you can still do on your pattern…


Spend some time getting your test fit right and adjusting the actual pattern pieces, and you will be able to easily apply these to every bottoms garment you make WITHOUT having to make alterations every time.


It is recommended that you make small changes at a time and test fit. Some changes will inevitably need to be made to straight grains, zipper placements, darts and any other structural parts of your pattern. Make sure you alter these at the same time if they are in the same area you are adjusting.


For adjustments that lengthen or widen, add new paper to fill in the gaps and tape in place. Draw the new lines.


For adjustments that shorten or decrease, overlap as described and tape in place. Draw the new lines.


A PDF version of the Perfect Fit Bottoms guide is available by clicking on the file below.


Drape & Stitch Perfect Fit Bottoms PDF
.p
Download P • 910KB

CONTENTS

Wide Hips Long Crotch

Narrow Hips Full Thigh

Full Butt Narrow Thigh

Flat Butt Full Tummy

Low Butt Full Calf

Full Waist Narrow Calf

Narrow Waist Flat Pubis

Short Crotch Full Pubis

Wide Hips


Fit issue: Fabric tight around hips, horizontal lines point across hips.


Solution: Widen the hipline.


How to adjust: Mark the full hip line on the pattern front and back pieces, horizontal between side and centre seams. Mark a horizontal line at the knee line side seam, just in from seam allowance. At the end of this line, mark a full vertical line from waistline to bottom hemline.

Cut this line, stopping 1.5cm (5/8”) or at seam allowance from the waistline. This is a hinge point. Cut the mark at knee line. Spread the cutline as much as required. Keep cutlines below marked knee line vertical and parallel to each other (this is why there is a cutline at the knee).

Wide Hips

Narrow Hips

Fit issue: Fabric loose around the hips, vertical lines point down hips.


Solution: Decrease the hipline.


How to adjust: Mark the full hip line on the pattern front and back pieces, horizontal between side and centre seams. Mark a horizontal line at the knee line side seam, just in from seam allowance. At the end of this line, mark a full vertical line from waistline to bottom hemline.

Cut this line, stopping 1.5cm (5/8”) or at seam allowance from the waistline. Overlap cut pieces at the cutlines as much as required. Keep cutlines below marked knee line vertical and parallel to each other (this is why there is a cutline at the knee).

Narrow Hips

Full Butt

Fit issue: Waist pulls down, lines point to centre back seam.


Solution: Lengthen the seat.


How to adjust: Mark the high hip line on the back piece, horizontal between side and centre seams. This is found between the waist and full hips. Cut this line, stopping 1.5cm (5/8”) or at seam allowance from the side seam. This is a hinge point.

Draw a vertical line from the centre knee line to the waistline. Cut this line, stopping at the knee line. This is a hinge point. Spread both cut lines as much as required, making sure you spread the same amount at each line.

Full Butt

Flat Butt

Fit issue: Fabric sags in butt area, diagonal lines point to thighs.


Solution: Shorten the seat.


How to adjust: Mark the high hip line on the back piece. This is found between the waist and full hips. Cut this line, stopping 1.5cm/ 5/8” from the side seam. This is a hinge point. Overlap cut pieces at the centre back curve as required.

Flat Butt

Low Butt

Fit issue: Fabric creeps between buttocks, horizontal lines point across lower seat, diagonal lines may point across thighs.


Solution: Adjust the back crotch curve.


How to adjust: ‘Scoop’ the back crotch curve by moving the crotch curve toward direction of side seam.

Low Butt

Full Waist

Fit issue: Fabric digs into waist, diagonal ‘smile’ lines point down from front crotch.


Solution: Widen the waistband or waistline.


How to adjust: Add the required width at the side seams and cut outwards down to the hipline. Add this same width to the TOTAL waistband (1, 2 or 4-piece waistbands) by cutting a vertical line and spreading as much as required. Remember to quarter the required adjustment and add to pant front and back pieces.

Full Waist

Narrow Waist

Fit issue: Fabric loose around hips, diagonal ‘frown’ lines point down from front crotch.


Solution: Tighten the waistband or waistline.


How to adjust: Decrease the required width at the side seams and cut inwards down to the hipline. Decrease this same amount from the TOTAL waistband (1, 2- or 4-piece waistbands) by cutting a vertical line and overlapping as much as required. Remember to quarter the required adjustment and decrease from pant front and back pieces.

Narrow Waist

Short Crotch

Fit issue: Tight fabric across front crotch, horizontal lines across front crotch.


Solution: Extend the front crotch.


How to adjust: Extend the front crotch curve and thigh as much as required.

Short Crotch

Long Crotch

Fit issue: Baggy fabric in front crotch, vertical lines down sides of front crotch.


Solution: Shorten the front crotch.


How to adjust: Shorten the front crotch curve and thigh as much as required.

Long Crotch

Full Thigh

Fit issue: The centre back seam sits in between the buttocks, can be diagonal lines away from the lower seat.


Solution: Extend the back crotch.


How to adjust: Lengthen the back crotch curve and thigh as much as required.

Full Thigh

Narrow Thigh

Fit issue: Fabric sags at the rear lower seat, vertical lines across back crotch.


Solution: Shorten the back crotch.


How to adjust: Take in the BACK inseam in the crotch area as much as required.

Narrow Thigh

Full Tummy

Fit issue: Pant front and hips ride up, diagonal lines point from the tummy.


Solution: Raise and widen the centre front.


How to adjust: Mark the high hip line on the front piece. This is found between the waist and full hips. Cut this line, stopping 1.5cm (5/8”) or at seam allowance from the side seam. This is a hinge point. Draw a vertical line from the centre knee line to the waistline.

Cut this line, stopping at the knee line. This is a hinge point. Spread both cut lines as much as required, making sure you spread the same amount at each line.

Full Tummy

Full Calf

Fit issue: Fabric is tight across calf, horizontal lines point across the back of knees.


Solution: Widen the calf area.


How to adjust: Draw a vertical line from the centre knee line to the hemline. Mark points on the left and right seam 8-10cm (3.25 - 4”) above this line. From these marks, draw lines straight to the centre knee line. Cut all lines, through the bottom hem and stopping at left and right seams.

Spread cut lines as much as required, spreading the same amount at each line.

Full Calf

Narrow Calf

Fit issue: Fitted pants are loose around calf, diagonal lines may point down from back of knees.


Solution: Decrease the calf area.


How to adjust: Draw a vertical line from the centre knee line to the hemline. Mark points on the left and right seam 8-10cm (3.25 - 4”) above this line. From these marks, draw lines straight to the centre knee line. Cut all lines, through the bottom hem and stopping at left and right seams.

Spread cut lines as much as required, spreading the same amount at each line.

Narrow Calf

Flat Pubis

Fit issue: Excess fabric in the front crotch, horizontal lines point across the front crotch.


Solution: Raise the front crotch.


How to adjust: Raise the front crotch curve as much as required.

Flat Pubis

Full Pubis

Fit issue: Centre front seam sits in too far in front crotch (think a certain toe named after a humped animal!), vertical lines may point down the front crotch.


Solution: Adjust the front crotch curve.


How to adjust: ‘Scoop’ the front crotch curve by moving the crotch curve toward direction of side seam.

Full Pubis

You should now have a perfect fitting bottom! ;) There are many adjustments that can be made to garment bottoms. Remember to take your time getting it right, and make small adjustments at a time.


Interested in trying one of our bottoms patterns? Click here.















Like this guide? Please comment below :)


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