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Focus on the Waist

Use a simple method to improve the fit of any pants pattern

Threads #207, Feb./March 2020
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No matter how close your measurements are to those listed on a pattern’s size chart, you are likely to need some fit adjustments for comfort and appearance. With pants, a key area to fit is the section from the waistline to the hips. Everyone has a different slope from narrow to wide, a different distribution of padding, and a different waistline angle.

Pants patterns are typically shaped with darts: These bring in the garment’s circumference at the waist, and create space and shaping for the abdomen, hips, and buttocks. A pattern may include one or two darts on each side in back, and one or no darts on each side in front. This configuration may be all right or may be all wrong, depending on your shape. The darts may take in too much or not enough circumference at the waist, or they may not be positioned where your…

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