Monday, October 25, 2010

Bernina My Label Pants – Fitting Evolution

While searching for a belt buckle for the 1952 dress, I took a departure from sewing on it. I want the dress to have ¾ length sleeves and I am still considering how the bottom of the sleeves should be styled. Do I want to use the 4” zippers? Will they be necessary? A cuff? I don’t know….

Last week, I visited several thrift stores and came away without a buckle. I haven’t been anymore successful with online shopping. I did find a vendor that sells buckles you cover with your fashion fabric. Wouldn't that be ideal for this dress? The price of the buckle is a reasonable $2.25. Shipping, however, is $10.25. Somehow, I find that offensive. I mean, the little buckle would fit into a standard letter-sized envelope. $10.25 - really?
Now, I haven’t been idle while figuring out the buckle thing.  I’ve pulled together the other items for the dress and have returned to my abandoned My Label pants pattern. I had thought my fitting issue was the crotch length. Remember the old Gap pants that I had deconstructed a few weeks ago?  Well, I took those pieces and compared them to my pattern.  Other than the waist, they were surprisingly similar.

My previous My Label pants attempts had used muslin-weight fabric.  It wasn’t pretty nor did it reflect what was actually going on with the pattern. This time, I decided to use a heavier fabric.  I had a green cotton (and silk?) fabric that I had ruined by drying it in a too hot dryer with a fabric softener sheet.  I had tried, but failed, to salvage the fabric by treating and rewashing it.  The stains would not come out and so it became test fabric.
As the Gap pieces predicted, the crotch length was just fine though the waist was excessively big.  Other than the crazy waist, the pants fit me better than any others I have purchased or sewn.  The measurement used is my actual waist measurement, so I don’t understand why it is so large.  Maybe I don’t have the various height measurements entered correctly.  Anyway, back to the software for another round...

Knowing that everything else fit, I kept adjusting the waist and printing new waistbands. Finally, I got one that fit my mid-section and I printed out the new pattern. I am in the process of sewing the pants using some leftover fabric.

One thing I have learned about printing the My Label pattern pieces is that it is much easier to individually print the various garment pieces instead of all of them at once. My worktable is small and taping individual pieces means there is less paper hanging over the edge pulling the taped sheets down while trying to line up the cross marks. It does use a few more sheets of paper but not as many expletives are required.  A fair trade in my opinion.
Please note the rotary cutter and tiny cutting mat. This is a crafty mat that I have had for many years.  I want to get a large mat but my cutting table folds up when not in use and pretends to be a desk.  The mat would have to be stored and I don’t have anywhere to stash it.  Under my bed? No, I think that would just be bad feng shui.  So, until I work that out, I will just slide the little mat around.  Actually, it is faster and cleaner than using scissors.

Okay, I’m gonna get the pants fitting dealt with and the 1952 dress won’t take long to finish – with or without a buckle.  And, after that I think I want to sew another jacket. My Label?


  1. I've just found the perfect solution for my big mat: an artist's portfolio. Widely available. I stick mine behind the couch. Glad you are having better luck with your trousers now.

  2. Thanks, Elizabeth! The sofa is only 32" tall - too short for the size of mat I want. Sadly, the "under the bed" thing may be my best choice.