Facebook Email Pinterest Twitter X Instagram Tiktok Icon YouTube Icon Headphones Icon Favorite Navigation Search Icon Forum Search Icon Main Search Icon Close Icon Video Play Icon Indicator Arrow Icon Close Icon Hamburger/Search Icon Plus Icon Arrow Down Icon Video Guide Icon Article Guide Icon Modal Close Icon Guide Search Icon

Conversational Threads

Plaid pants

Johanan | Posted in General Discussion on

Hi All,


Wonder if anyone can help me with plaid pant layout.  I notice that the grainline of the pant front is not perpendicular to the hemline.  Therefore, if I align the grainline with a vertical line in the plaid fabric then the hemline will not align with a horizontal line of the plaid fabric.  The back pattern piece, however, is perpendicular to the hemline so its hemline follows the horizontal line of the plaid fabric.  Thus, if I keep my grainlines straight and do not alter the lengths then the plaids will not match when I sew the front and back together.  Anyone know what I’m talking about or how I should solve the problem?






  1. KharminJ | | #1

    Hi BeckyEileen~!

    I haven't tried to make pants in *years and years*, but that does sound odd to me.

    Can you tell us what pattern you're using, or even better - post a copy of the pattern envelope picture(s) so we can see what "they" think it should look like?

    Also, how strong are the horizontal lines in your fabric, really? It may look horribly lopsided, when you're *in its face*, but be barely noticeable (and only by those who know about your issues) by the time you get the pants on, and the line is actually at the floor... yaknow what I mean?

    Bright Blessings ~ Kharmin

    1. Johanan | | #4

      Thanks Kharmin for taking the time to answer my question.  As I explained in my response to starzoe, the problem turns out not to be the pattern (the grainline is perpendicular to the hemline I realized when I measured carefully) but the plaid fabric itself.

  2. starzoe | | #2

    Sometimes, with plaids, the grainline is out of sync with the fabric pattern, and if this is the case you do have a problem. Are both fronts the same? If the back is okay it would seem that a mistake was made in laying out the pattern on the fabric for the front.Also, hemlines do vary, some are not meant to be horizontal to the grainline, so if your pants match in everything but the hemline, I would ignore it just as anyone looking at the pants would -- just don't point it out to anyone!!!!

    1. Johanan | | #3

      Thanks for your response starzoe.  Your thoughts about the grainline and/or hemline not always matching up well with a plaid fabric are useful.  In this case, however, the problem turns out to be partly my working late at night and misinterpreting the situation.  Placing a T-square on my pattern showed me that the pattern is o.k., that the grainline is perpendicular to the hemline but my fabric's plaid lines are off.  Perhaps, I should think about using this fabric for a bias skirt instead of pants.

      1. Teaf5 | | #5

        If your fabric's plaid lines are off, it's going to give you fits in a bias skirt as well; the side seams, which are difficult in a true plaid, will probably never line up in a faulty one. 

        If you like the colors and weight of this piece of fabric, perhaps you can make a throw or a wrap out of it--something that doesn't need to be seamed.  A particularly useful and beautiful wrap is a long, wide rectangle with a long slit up to the center and neckline.  The  full piece goes in the back, and the two halves drape/wrap across the front.

      2. User avater
        ThreadKoe | | #6

        Is the plaid a print or a woven plaid? Cathy

      3. sewslow67 | | #7

        I don't recall you saying what the fiber is in your plaid fabric.  If it is wool, you could take it to your local dry cleaners and ask them to block it, i.e. straighten out the grain of the fabric.  Most wools should be "steamed shrunk" before sewing them anyway, esp. worsted wools.  They don't usually charge much for this service, and it can frequently make a huge difference between a successfully sewn garment and one that comes up short of your expectations.

This post is archived.

Threads Insider

Get instant access to hundreds of videos, tutorials, projects, and more.

Start Your Free Trial

Already an Insider? Log in

Conversational Threads

Recent Posts and Replies

  • |
  • |
  • |
  • |
  • |
  • |

Threads Insider Exclusives

View All
View All