Thurlow muslins and reverse-engineered trousers
I am joining in on Lauren’s Thurlow Sew-along at the end of this month. So, I’ve been choosing my fabrics and working on my muslins in preparation.
I want to make a pair of trousers in this material
and a pair of shorts in this velvet-y material.
I don’t know how it happened, but two trends that I have consistently turned my nose up at have grabbed me: shorts for fall and floral printed bottoms. The floral print above is a very tiny floral print, and I think with shorts the floral print will be a lot less obtrusive than many of the pants I’ve seen. We’ll see if I like the look.
The muslin process has been a trial with this pattern. I made two muslins for the Thurlow trousers and still couldn’t get a proper fit.
Muslin #1 and #1.2
For the first muslin I cut everything in a size 8, with the legs shortened about 2 inches. According to the finished measurements on the envelope I should have had plenty of room. However, when I tried the muslin on, it was way too tight. I had to rip the seams out and add width at the thigh (on both the inside and outside) and add to the crotch length.
Once I added the width at the thighs, this is what my first muslin looked like.
The front view wasn’t too bad, but there was some pulling. There was also too much extra volume in the legs under the fullest part of my thigh. I already have large thighs, so I don’t want to accentuate the area. The seam line needs to be taken in under the fullest part of the thigh to give more shape to the pant leg.
The pant legs were still WAY too long. Yes, they aren’t hemmed in this picture but even taking into account the 1 3/4″ hem allowance, the legs needed to be shortened another 1 inch.
I made the second muslin as shorts because I wanted to conserve some of my muslin material.
I didn’t take pictures of the second muslin on me because it was such an epic fail.
I made a separate pattern by tracing along the final seam lines of muslin #1 and adding to both the front and back crotch lengths and both side and center leg seams.
The horrible fit of the second muslin was the result of over-correction.
Final Alteration Notes
I finally determined that all I needed to do was add a couple of sizes to the crotch area (only on the back pieces), and about 1/8 inch to each side seam in the thigh region. That’s 1/8 inch in addition to my previous adjustment to the side seams for the first muslin. Basically, I originally needed to go up a couple of sizes at only the back crotch and side seams (only at the fullest part of the thigh, grading back to size 8 at upper hips/waist and below the thigh).
I also have to take it in to about a size 6 along the back waist extension.
In addition, I found that I like my trouser legs to have a bit more shape, otherwise my legs look like stovepipes. So, I had to shape the side seams below the fullest part of the thigh.
Honestly, all the work I put into altering the pattern doesn’t seem worth it to me now. Maybe that will change once I have the final product in front of me. Don’t get me wrong, I think the pattern design and the instructions are great; I just thought I wouldn’t have to do as many alterations to a pattern made for curvier women. I’ve been working on my own trouser pattern at the same time, and it has been much less of an ordeal.
My Reverse-Engineered Trouser Pattern
I’ve talked about making my own trouser pattern for a couple of years now, and finally forged ahead with the idea. The pattern is based on a favorite pair that I deconstructed. It is designed for trouser fabrics with a bit of stretch, or potentially fabrics cut on the bias.
I have the pattern finished, and now I’m working on a muslin. I’ve started titling my patterns for fun and to keep track of the pieces better. This pattern is called Dahlia.
I plan to use the purple-pink herringbone material pictured below for the Dahlia trousers.
Is anyone who is reading this doing the Thurlow Sew-Along, too? How’s your muslin coming along?
I’m also working on a coat pattern based on a favorite old coat. I’ll share more about that at some point this week.