Sunday, September 2, 2012

Perfect Pants Pattern: An Unfinished Quest

Ever since I finished Project 26: Boy's Kilt, I have been working on drafting and executing the perfect pair of pants for myself. I'm using Garment Designer 2.5 and discovering that even though there is a drop down sizing chart labeled "men" I have to keep a lookout for womenswear silhouettes. I made the mistake with the first pattern I drafted of going straight to fabric. I had a length of beautiful thick black linen that I had purchased back in January to make pants for my concert. Didn't quite make that deadline, but oh well!

The really great thing about Garment Designer is that you can set up slopers* for different people and then invoke them from the size drop-down and everything gets re-sized for the person's exact measurements. I, unfortunately, trusted that process a little too much. I got a pattern that fit me and I executed it with ease, but when I went to try them on, the waist was up where a woman's pant would be, covering my bellybutton. Not a good look on a man.

Back to the drawing board! I was heartbroken to have wasted that gorgeous fabric, so I decided to just use left-overs until I was absolutely sure the pattern was right. I had some of the beautiful brown wool from Project 12: Halloween Costumes left over, so after shortening the waist I printed out the new pattern, taped the pieces of paper together and made my plastic pattern pieces. Again, I executed the garment very well, but did so at night. With dark brown fabric and black interfacing. Imagine my horror when I had a very well-fitting pair of wool pants with one of the back pocket welts in black interfacing instead of brown wool. Grrr!

At least the wool was used up. Next I made a couple tiny adjustments and tried again with the leftover black linen from Project 17: Black Linen Dress Shirt . The execution was even better this time and I was sure that I had a hit. I wore them to perform at an event up in B.C. and my brave and wonderful fiancé informed me that the fabric was a little too light for pants. Ooops! Thank gods we have the kind of relationship that allows him to say things like "Honey, they're beautiful and everyone can see your underwear" without fear of repercussion.

So I'm taking a short break from the perfect pants pattern quest to sew up some resort wear for our upcoming trip to Maui. Stay tuned for my all black resort wear mini collection! After that, I'm conquering pants. Really.

* A sloper is a two-dimensional representation of a body which allows two-dimensional patterns to be adjusted precisely.

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