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Waist Placement

gwoman | Posted in Fitting on

I am making a simple floor length skirt that uses a  casing for the waistband for my daughter-in-law.  She wears her skirts and pants below the waistline, at the top of her stomach.  How do I adjust for this?  How do I make sure the new waistline stays where it should?  I don’t want her to be continually pulling the skirt to the waistline point she prefers.

Thank you all for your help.




  1. suesew | | #1

    I would simply cut the elastic to fit well for that part of her body. It will not be able to be very tight. If you make it fit her waist, it will want to migrate to that position. Girls ( and many women) don't know where their waists are any more. And generally they look the worse for it.

    1. Gloriasews | | #2

      I agree - with an elastic waist, it naturally wants to sit at your waist & will keep riding up if you keep pulling it down.  I think, for a long skirt, it would look best sitting at the waist, but, it your daughter-in-law wants a lower waist, why don't you plan it for where she does want it sitting & don't use elastic, but make a smooth waist by just facing the waist (no waistband) so it just sits on her hips (or whereever), but you will need to put a zipper in it.  That way, it won't creep up to her waistline.  See what she thinks of that idea.

  2. From my Stash.... | | #3

    I'm not sure if you are asking a design question or a fitting issue. If it is a fitting issue (which I suspect), your daughter-in-law's preference for the lower waistband may be based on her actual figure, not just a fashion preference. A tip to determine this: her waistbands roll over on her skirts and pants. If it is, then to fit her properly, when she tries on the skirt or a muslin of it, take a length of 1/4 inch wide elastic and tie it comfortably around her waist. Let her wear this and move around in it for a while and the elastic will gravitate to her natural waistline.  Now, mark the bottom of the elastic all around the skirt ( you may find that she likes the front of her skirt lower than the back - if so, don't worry about it). Then sew your waistband along that line instead of the pattern waistline.  By the way, remember to make the waistband a little longer to account for the additional inches below her waist.

    Good luck,

    1. Crazy K | | #4

      This waist placement issue is near and dear to me.  I am short.......my inseam however is not terribly short for my height.  That means I have almost NO torso........I go from boobs to hips with very little space in between.  I have always worn my things way too low (according to my late mother!) but it is the only WAIST that I have!  I have about half an inch between bottom rib and my hips and that's where everything must sit to be comfy.  No wide belts or waistbands for me........  Also my distance from waist to crotch is short...........lots of fitting issues for me.  I am a happy camper when I can wear pants with elastic (or at least stretchy) waistband or jeans that are meant to ride just a tad below what people consider the 'natural' waist. 

      O.K...........that's my two-cents worth.  Moral is:  Wear it where it's comfortable if and when at all possible.  Bodies are all so different..........fashions are often made for the 'perfect figure' and I have yet to see one of those!!!!!!!!



  3. Josefly | | #5

    The way I read your message is that you want the elastic-in-a-casing, but want it to ride below your daughter-in-law's waist. The first answer you got was correct, in my opinion; the elastic must be long enough to "relax" (without any stretch) at the right distance below the waist. If it is any shorter, it will seek the smallest part of the body - the waist.

  4. tmorris1 | | #6

    I agree with all of the wonderful suggestions here, but 1/2 inch elastic is going to migrate back to the true waistline no matter what you do. You may need to use a wider elastic (1 1/2 - 2") to keep it from rolling back up to the waist as well. T.

    1. gwoman | | #7

      Thank you for your help.



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