Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Shorts Circuit

It's July already?? I'd lost my mojo for a moment but I'm back in full sewing mode. All the fabric is back in the fabric closet and although my sewing room could use a little more organization the idea of making shorts has lit a fire in me. I haven't made or worn shorts in years but all of a sudden I can't get them out of my mind. I swear I've been feeling like a hobo at the golf course because my golf wardrobe is nowhere near what it has been in previous seasons. I haven't worn shorts because although I think I'm still hot...I don't want my crotch feeling hot! Secondly I hate having shorts crawl up  between the thighs. You know the look...

Not a look I want to be seen in. So to the drawing board I went. I started with Simplicity 1696.

I know it's not a shorts pattern but I liked that it had the "curvy" pattern pieces and frankly, I'd already trimmed it. Although they're are plenty of fitting videos, books and classes available, it is impossible to address every possible fit issue and I don't feel any have addressed how to fit a big butt with big thighs! There I've said it. Talking about it is one thing but nobody has done it! And you have to be able to adjust it by yourself, not to mention that the fit is different standing with knees together as opposed to standing with feet shoulder-width apart. I'm think you should shoot for shoulder-width apart fit. My journey was not nearly as painful as I thought it would be. It did involve making muslins...three to be exact but the fourth pair are nearly perfect.

I didn't take any shortcuts. I even added the lapped zipper to each pair but I took the time to remove it and use the same zipper in subsequent models! Try to picture in you mind, adding to the back crotch point but having to true the seam back to the existing inseam. ALL WRONG! That will only create diagonal lines that radiate from the buttocks to the inseam. If your thighs rub, why is the inseam curved several inches as if you could view a movie through that space...yeah right. Never was, never will be. While I think I still want to tweak the pattern a little more, I got a fabulous fit with this adjusted back pattern piece:

The green arrow is pointing to the typical wedge adjustment. The blue arrow is pointing to the amount you have to add that was taken away from the pattern on the opposite side for the seat. The red arrow is pointing to an adjustment I've never seen anywhere but came up with on my own that adds to the back crotch length and adds width to the thigh but doesn't screw up the crotch point. Finally the yellow arrow is pointing to what I consider an adjustment for thighs that touch. That adjustment alone takes care a lot of diagonal lines that radiate from the back crotch. I'm currently working on a second pair of shorts to test my new theory. I promise to post photos before the end of the week so that you can see these adjustments do work. Can you ever really get enough information for fixing fit issues?


  1. Oooh. I always just do the wedge. I think I'm going to split my typical 1" 'big booty adjustment' to 1/2" at the red arrow and 1/2" at the green arrow.


    I'm making S1696 for the mini wardrobe contest!

  2. OK, I think that photo with all of the arrows is the most genius, inspired pants fitting photo I have seen ever. Thank you so much for sharing this information. I realize we all need different adjustments, but you have given me a lot to consider.

  3. Ahhh, I know it so well. The BBTT (big booty/thunder thigh) syndrome and trying to make a pair of pants/shorts that accommodates these challenge areas. Your photo is enlightening. Can't wait to see your progress.

  4. It's always great to get more fitting info and I learn from each post someone does so please don't stop! Can't wait to see the finished shorts because I don't wear them for the same reason...I can't stand the crawl!

  5. Ugh, I hate the dreaded shorts crawl. It's the reason I do not wear shorts - except nylon shorts for the gym. I'm interested in seeing how the alterations turn out.

  6. Great picture of "how not to wear shorts"! Excited to see yours. I'm itching to make a pair myself. I'll be watching your process closely!