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LizA270 | Posted in Fitting on

Hello all from New Zealand. I’ve been reading this great site for a while, but this is my first message. I’ve just made a pair of pants, a tweedy wool/silk mix but fairly lightweight, from a Burda World of Fashion magazine. These patterns usually fit me really well. The front is a perfect fit. But the back has diagonal wrinkles across the thigh area. The wrinkles go diagonally from the outside hip to the inside knee. Does anyone have any suggestions?


  1. sanderson | | #1

    My manners have been quite lax lately.  Welcome. 
    Do you think it could be a fabric grain issue?  If this were an alteration problem that a client brought to me I'd be tempted to take the seams apart from the waistband down to the knees on the side seam and the center back seam, have the client put the pants on inside out and then pin fit the seam back up from the knees to see where the extra fabric should go.  Hopefully you have a sewing buddy who you could do this with.  I'm sure someone else will be along shortly who will have more practical sewing solo suggestions. 

  2. ElonaM | | #2

    There can be several causes for this. One is a flattish posterior, where there isn't quite enough, um, contour to fill out the pants back there. One cure for this is to slash the pattern horizontally from the center back seam out to just the hip seamline (not all the way across, though), maybe about five inches down from the waist. Then overlap the cut edges at the center back seam, taking out perhaps 3/8" to start with. This is the correction that I use, and it pretty much takes care of the problem.

    Another cause is a full "high hip," where the fullness of the hip starts right below the waist, instead of further down. You can correct for this during the last try-on before putting on the waistband. Here, you pin a length of elastic around your waist, and then you (or a helper, but it can actually be done alone) smooth the pants into place, front, back, and sides. Often, the wrinkles you describe are the result of the side seams being hiked up too high on side hip fluff. If you smooth the sideseams downward a bit, you can see those diagonal wrinkles disappear.

    When the pants look the way you like, then chalkmark along the underside of the elastic for your ideal waistline, and add a seam allowance above that (5/8" or a little more for a safety net).

    1. rjf | | #3

      I've had that problem and what works for me is to raise the back waistline, marking it as you suggest.  The other thing that helps is a two-piece waistband that gets sewn on before you sew the center back seam but that presupposes a fly-front.    Sometimes I'd make the seam of the waist band wider at the top so it curved in towards my backbone.  Sewing from the end of the zipper, around the crotch and up the back through the waistband was the last thing I did except for hemming and fastening the belt loops.  Ah me!.......I wish they still fit.        rjf

    2. LizA270 | | #4

      Thanks for your advice. The problem was both high hips and not enough posterior, as you suggested. I let out the side seams by half a cm, did the smoothing thing and adjusted the waistband. Wrinkles gone! thanks again.

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