Posted on 14 August 2018
Last week when I posted pictures of my finished Lander Shorts on Instagram, I mentioned some of the fit adjustments that I made and asked if it would be helpful to show you my muslin vs. the finished pattern. And oh my gosh - it was a resounding "yes"!
So let me start off with some disclaimers...I am definitely not a pro at fitting pants! I made a few adjustments that worked for me and my body type, but I don't have much insight beyond that. I would recommend taking a look at the pants fitting guide from Closet Case Patterns - that's what I used and it's so helpful!
These two pairs of shorts are made out of two different types of twill. My muslin pair, the olive green, is made out of a twill that I think I got at Joann's a couple years ago. I don't know if it's 100% cotton or what the weight of the fabric is. My lilac pair is made out of the Chino Twill that we have available in the shop. I LOVE it! It doesn't wrinkle too much after wearing them all day and doesn't stretch out like crazy between washes.
Speaking of - I just washed and dried both of these pairs of shorts. The lilac pair is definitely a touch more snug than usual thanks to my husband touching up the load of laundry on high heat.
Last disclaimer - my muslin pair of shorts is just that...a muslin. I didn't interface my pattern pieces when called for, I barely trimmed my threads, and didn't worry about finishing seams cleanly (I didn't think anyone would see them!). So just don't judge me on my sewing skills when you see those insides!
So first up - my muslin pair of Lander Shorts! I cut the pattern and didn't make any adjustments other than to grade from a size 12 at the waist to a 14 at the hips. I had a feeling the waist would be too big, but I really can't stand it when shorts are too tight!
And yes, I was right...they were WAY too big in the waist! As you can see in the pictures, I have probably a good inch of extra space. My waist is typically a size smaller than my hips, but two sizes was a surprise! I think it's because this pattern is SO high-waisted and I'm used to sizing based on a lower point of my hips.
Here's where things get awkward...let's talk about all that fabric around the crotch area. At first, I couldn't tell if the area was too high or too low. I thought I would need a lot of adjustments by changing the rise somehow and I definitely got worried. Luckily, Kim from Straight Stitch Designs was over for a sewing date and she helped me out...I just needed to do a flat pubis adjustment.
Um, what? How do you even know if you have a flat pubis? Who thinks about that? Like I said...awkward.
Basically, there was a lot of extra fabric in the area of the pattern just below the zip fly. I could pinch out extra fabric. With the flat pubis adjustment, I basically made the crotch curve a little more shallow. This adjustment can have super dramatic results, even if you just change it by an eighth to a quarter of an inch, so start small!
As you can see in the photo below, the second row of stitching is the flat pubis adjustment that I made...about a quarter inch change, but it made such a difference!
So for my final pair...
I decided to use a size 10 at the waist and grade to a size 14 at the hips. I think they're still a little bit tight through my tummy area and when they first come out of the wash the pockets pull. But thanks to the 1" seam allowance on the side seams, I can pretty easily take that out a little if I decide to. I think I'll probably end up letting the side seams out about a quarter inch on either side right around where the pockets meet the side seam.
The flat pubis adjustment made such a huge difference. If I had changed the rise, like I originally thought I would, I wouldn't be able to sit down comfortably...but I have no problem with this pair! They're super comfortable.
There's definitely some other alterations I could probably make to perfect this pair. That said, I really don't want to get sucked down the rabbit hole of over-fitting! I think there's something to be said about accepting that you're close enough without going overboard. I never even think about changing them once they're on my body...I only worry about it when I'm staring at myself in a mirror.
How about you guys? Are you chronic over-fitters or close-enough-ers? How do you know when to say enough is enough?