January 3, 2011

Snipping up your Trouser Muslin

Oh it's the day we've all been waiting for! Today, I'll be showing you a few basic steps and info for cutting and marking your trouser muslin. Now, I will warn you that you might need to cut more than one muslin to get the right fit, I have. Being an animal in and of themselves, you might find that pants have odd fittings and two, possibly three muslins may be required before you get the perfect fit. However, I will say that when you find a good pant/trouser/jean pattern and such that you want to make again and again, you'll be thankful that you fitted them correctly and perfected your flat pattern so that you can go and whip them up in no time flat. Let's start snipping!



I'm using a basic cotton muslin. This you won't need to prewash, but you will need to press. Please, pretty please, press your muslin before you cut. Sometimes there are folds and creases in the fabric that will affect the fit. Now onto cutting.  Layout your pattern pieces on your fabric.  Whether you choose to pin you pattern pattern to your fabric or trace or what have you, is ultimately up to you. Now go ahead and cut. With muslins, you are looking for the basic idea of the pattern. You don't need to bother with lining or facing the waistband. Here's a run down of how many of each piece to cut.

  • Piece 1 & 3 (trouser leg front and back) cut 2

  • Piece 2 & 2a (pocket & pocket lining) cut 2

  • Piece 4 cut 1

  • Piece 5 cut 2, unless you are sewing this piece without a seam in the back in which case you'll cut 1




Once you've got everything cut, it's a good idea to label everything with a magic marker or pencil or pen. I write directly on the fabric and mark all the darts and such with it too.



Next, thread mark your seam allowances. Why do this? It's very helpful when you need to adjust a seam, you'll know exactly how much to adjust because your seam allowance has already been marked. To threadmark, use a basting stitch with a contrasting thread and sew all around your pattern pieces, marking the seam allowance. Now, be careful that you mark the right seam allowances in the right places. Remember, 1" along the outseam and the inseam, the waistband and the pockets. The crotch, the back of the waistband (if you've opted for a seamed back waistband) and that pocket extension flap will be 5/8". Please refer to this post if you need a visual.

OK, that's a wrap for today. Tomorrow, muslin construction.
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