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waistband pulls down at back

123sew | Posted in Fitting on


I thought for sure I’d find something on this problem but a search doesn’t pull anything up. Anyway, I have a pair of pants that when I sit down, the back waistband pulls downward. I tried to use Palmer Plesch to figure out what was going on, but apparently I’m not experienced enough for this.

Sometimes I see this happen on other people’s ready to wear, so I’m sure it’s relatively common! Any ideas?



  1. Teaf5 | | #1

    Your back waistline pulls down because your back crotch seam is too short. A certain amount of pulling down is going to happen no matter what you do because a seated bottom takes up more space than a standing one, but if it's extreme, it can be uncomfortable and so worth adjusting.

    The easiest way to fix this problemis to angle the waistline on the pants back from the side seams up toward the center rather than going horizontally or exactly perpendicular to the center back seam. On my daughter's pants, I add nearly an inch at the top of the center back and then taper back down to the original waistline at the side seam. (To fit my own, flat bottom, I have to do the opposite; that is, scoop the back waistline 1" lower at the center back.)

    However, this method distorts the grainline at the waist, which would be very noticeable in a fabric with any horizontal pattern or weave. In that case, it would be better to lengthen the crotch depth by deepening the curve, as described in many fitting books. This alteration preserves the original on-grain waistline, but it can also add fullness to the upper leg area that you may not need or want.

    In any case, I would take a pair of pants that fits correctly (if you can find one) and use it as a template for new ones you want to make.

  2. mem | | #2

    The back crotch seam isnt long enough .Get some scrap fabric and cut out a front and back pants pattern then scoop out the back seam by trimming a little at a time out of the curve . try it on and sit down and when you get to the right amount of scoop stop and compare the curve to the original one on the pattern and you will then have an idea of how much you will need to trim off the pattern.I would make up another pattern piece with this adjustmant and store it with your pattern so that next time you can compare it with other patterns you might choose to sew.if the this is too small an adhjustment and you need to add alot in you will need to slash across the pattern and open up the back seam but not the side seam . You do this by creating a hinge at the side seam line and then inserting a piece of tissue into the pants piece .

  3. SewNancy | | #3

    This happens to me because I have a low rear end. Increasing the back waist ht. just makes the pants baggy. JOyce Murphy's articles show the best way to deal with this. I need to provide more body room, if I add to crotch point it doesn't work either just creates more problems as Joyce explains extremely well. I need the crotch seam to dip down towards the floor. Your problem of course may be different, but Murphys method makes it easy to fix the problem.

    1. Brine | | #4

      Where would I find these articles by Joyce Murphy?

      1. SewNancy | | #5

        Threads, Nov 2005, January 2006

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