Prepping the Pattern Pieces

Oh my goodness! It’s already here! January 3, 2011. And that means its time for the official start of the Trouser Sewalong. I hope you all had a wonderfully relaxing and fabulous holiday! Unfortunately, I was sick nearly the entire time. Laid up in bed. And quite frankly, it was a drag. But I’m good now and ready to beat my January/winter blues. This week we’ll be cutting out our muslin and stitching it up. First, I thought it would be a good idea to go over the individual pattern pieces together with Burda #127. What with all the confusion and craziness with this pattern, I’m here to say that it does actually sew up and though my muslin was probably one size too big it did fit. OK, are we ready? Let’s go.

I’m again going to stress the 1″ seam allowances everywhere but in the crotch. Here’s the thing with those allowances: the crotch is the major crux of the entire operation. The way it plays with the other areas of a pair of trousers is a big deal. This is the area that you are probably going to have the most trouble in, but it’s not necessarily the area you fix. You’ll actually be fixing the area that’s affecting the crotch. Make sense? Hopefully so. Let’s talk about the pattern pieces now. Alright? Alright.

As you can see on the original pattern, the pieces are labeled. So after you’ve traced off or taped together your pattern (PS, even after I had taped the pattern together, I noticed that there would not be enough room for the 1″ seam allowances I needed, so tracing I did, very disgruntled I might add) you should go about labeling them. It makes the whole experience less difficult. Pattern piece no. 1 is the leg front. You’ll cut two of these. Everywhere but the crotch area (and the hem) will have 1″ seam allowances. The crotch will have 5/8″ seam allowance and the hem does not need any seam allowance. Believe me, unless you are really tall, you definitely don’t need to add anything to the hem. Ahem…

Piece no. 3 is the leg back. Same thing as for no. 1.

Pattern piece no. 2 is the pocket. In fact it’s a pocket within a pocket. I separated this piece to show you what you’ll need to cut. The smaller piece is the pocket lining, which I’ve labeled 2A. You’ll cut two of these. 1″ seam allowance everywhere. The actual pocket is the entire piece. You’ll cut two of those. 1″ seam allowance everywhere but that extended tab part. That part connects to the crotch and so you’ll only need 5/8″ seam allowance there.

Piece no. 4 is the waistband front. 1″ seam allowance everywhere but along that edge that will be cut on the fold of the fabric (right edge here).

Piece no. 5 is the waistband back. 1″ seam allowance everywhere but at the actual waistband back. There you’ll only add 5/8″ because that is part of the crotch area. And that’s only if you want that seamline in the back waistband. Personally I don’t, so I decided to cut this area on the fold, in which case you don’t need to add a seam allowance there. Also, if you are into the plaids and stripes for your trousers, you’ll want to cut the waistband on the bias, because I can’t think of anything worse than trying to match plaids or stripes in this area. In fact, its not even possible. Especially if you consider there is a pleat and a dart in these trousers. So, I’ll show you how to transform your waistband in an upcoming post.

OK, does this help? I certainly hope so. I definitely want to hear your thoughts. Even for those of you who are tackling a different pattern. It is a good idea for you too, to do the same things you see here. The adjustments and fittings I’ll be showing will be easier with more room to work with. Have fun sweets! Next up, cutting your muslin!


12 thoughts on “Prepping the Pattern Pieces

  1. Wow, the sew-along is already off to a fantastic bang! I love how you’ve spelled out the pattern pieces here, especially against the orange background. The best part is that even though I’m not able to use the Burda, that this is equally helpful to anyone using a fairly standard pant pattern as well.

  2. Hey Sunni! This info helps a lot! 🙂 My pattern (Vogue 1051) has a slightly different structure than the Burda you guys are using (extra welts, fly and loop pieces, and facings). I am assuming that I will be cutting all of these our per your instructions here, with only a few minor changes. Looking forward to getting started!

  3. Wow, I am really curious about the fixing issues now – because the last time I made trousers, the problems seemed to be indeed with the crotch. Well, my muslin is cut and waiting for me to have some more time!

  4. Hi Jen! I would keep the fly, but don’t insert the zipper. No facings, welts or loops though! I’m thinking about a showing a fly front for those of you who’ve picked a pattern with that. We’ll see. That would be a lot of pants for me, but I’m quite convinced you can’t have too many pants.

  5. Dear Sunni,
    this is a tall pattern. I was interested in seeing how you would shorten your pattern pieces. However, this post shows that you skip that step altogether. Are you planning to fit by pinching and taking in seams instead?

  6. Hi Steff,
    Yes, I do realize this is a tall pattern. I will be doing all of the alteration posts next week and because there are various things to consider with shortening and lengthening pants patterns I decided to keep that for next week too. I have many alterations to go over next week. Many, many. But don’t worry, one of the first will be the hem and lenghthening and shortening the legs.
    I will say that my legs are quite short and boy there is a good chunk that can come off.

  7. Hi!
    I am joining the sew along but not making the burda pattern… maybe I am being a bit too optimistic but I want to make the Nouveau Dressy Jeans by Hot Patterns using one of my corduroys. Wish me luck!

  8. I’ll start the sewalong a month late, but I’m looking forward to reading your posts on fitting and sewing, so I’ll know what to expect when I can finally begin!

  9. No problem! Hopefully trousers/pants will be something that everyone can make for a long time to come. They definitely are not as hard as one might think. Putting together this sewalong has really furthered my understanding of pants and how they fit. It’s very exciting indeed!

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