Apr 7, 2014

Party in the Front, Mom Jeans in the Back

I thought I hated high-waisted pants. But now, after the third draft of my self-drafted Perfect Pants pattern (made using Kenneth King's method as outlined in the Craftsy "Jeanius" class, I realize that I do like 'em high — but only in the back:


Some would say that the above my high-in-the-back-but-low-in-the-front waistline is poor patternmaking, but I love how these pants fit more than anything. I can bend over without revealing my undies (or worse), and yet my front waistband rides low enough that it doesn't cut into my stomach when I sit down. In fact, I love these pants so much I wore them twice before I managed to get photos for the blog — something I avoid out of fear I will get food on them or otherwise ruin.  

I'm not one for cropped tops, so there's really no way to tell I've got a high-low waistline going on:


The last time I made this pattern I was disappointed; the front rise was too long, and though I loved my fabric and had sewn them really well, every time I put them on I'd get frustrated and change. A baggy crotch is a major deal-breaker.

So I reduced my front rise by an inch and half — and then added it to the back rise (I've learned the hard way that if you take out of the front, you must give to the back or else the end result will be butt-crack-city). I then had to reshape the waistline through the side seam, resulting in this high-low look. The result is the best-shaped pants I've owned. In fact, I didn't even mind doing the over-the-shoulder shot in these pants:


Oh, and that top? The Tiny Pocket Tank by Grainline in a lovely cotton-silk from Metro Textile in NYC's Garment District. The print, which I think looks like an Impressionist painting, has just about every color in it. 

My pattern has some tuxedo-pant-style detailing, which I find very flattering, even in this non-tuxedo-pant-style yellow, a (non-stretch) cotton I found in Mood's denim section: 


The tuxedo-pant detailing appears also in the inseam. I think I will omit that piecing in my next iteration of this pattern:


Any other high-low lovers out there? (I've noticed that some of my RTW pants have a similar cut, so maybe I am late to the high-low party!)

24 comments:

  1. Makes perfect sense to me! And gives me an idea for some upcoming jeans.... seriously, I don't like seeing undies (or worse!) on people, so I think this is a great idea.

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    1. yes, the "or worse" is...the worst!

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  2. I love this cut! I've found it pretty impossible to find in RTW jeans though. I need to tuck this bit away for when I get to the Jean-ius class myself.

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    1. Put the Jeanius class at the front of your sewing must-do list. It's awesome. I learned so much.

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  3. mmmmm. i petted these pants in real life, and they're scrumptious.

    this color palette on you is perfection. like, you're glowing.

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    1. I AM glowing — with the happiness that can only come from a pair of well-fitting pants...

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  4. These look great! I am very pear shaped and all of my 'volume' is in the back so a higher rise in the back sounds like a great idea Very cool tuxedo details. :)

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  5. Wow! These look amazing! The fit is so perfect and the color is fantastic!!

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    1. Thanks lady! I'm optimistic I will get to wear them soon (without getting cold ankles, brr!)

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  6. Omg YES, I'm the same! My favorite RTW pants are at the waist in the back but at least a couple inches below my belly button in the front. I'm definitely going to transfer this fit to my upcoming jeans/pants pattern(s). I've also found that the back rise is the key to pants staying in place, on me... I can have them lower in front as I like, as long as the back is at my waist -- without that, I'm constantly having to yank at them.

    Love the tuxedo seaming, and how fun at the inseam too!

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    1. The key to making the high-low work is a well-shaped waistband. I hate pulling pants up!

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  7. I'm a high-waister in the front and the back, but part of sewing is creating what's right for you and what you feel comfortable in. So, if you like the hi-low, go with it!

    I have a crotch question for you - you wrote "I've learned the hard way that if you take out of the front, you must give to the back or else the end result will be butt-crack-city." If there is excess, why would you eliminate and give it back?

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    1. When I have removed excess in the front and not shifted it to the back rise, the crotch point pulled forward, tugging down the back, resulting in a too-low waist band in the rear. I am very curved in the rear though, so perhaps this would not be a problem for everyone. I think the tricky part with drafting pants is getting those two curves just right, and that the point where they meet is at the right place to not pull in other direction.

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  8. genius! love the "high/low" waistband situation. these colors look amazing on you, great outfit!

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  9. This looks like the best of both worlds, and might solve the reason why I gave up on making my own jeans!! I've had the CB pull down way more than I could understand whenever I sat- arrrgh! so... thank you!!

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    1. Slash and spread to add to the back rise. Such an easy fix.

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  10. They look fantastic. Holy cow they look fantastic. It makes total sense to have the back rise higher than the front but I never would have come to that alteration on my own, I don't think. I just love the color, too. Great job! This is really an exceptional pair of pants.

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  11. I just used Jeanius for the second time, tracing a different pair of jeans, and I continue to be amazed at all the info that's packed in that course! I loved the new jeans that I was copying and didn't fully realize how much higher the back was than the front until I copied them. Its seems like I was sneaking the hi-low thing without even realizing it. It's nice to have a little extra coverage when you spend most of your day in a chair (the 90 degree rotated version of bending over).

    The fit on these pants is just lovely and the fit through the leg is perfect. I freaking love the color too! Basically, I would like to steal your pants please.

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  12. This is exactly how I like my pants too! It makes sense... there is an inward curve in your back and front where the waistband is sitting. If I try to put them at the same height they just want to migrate there anyways and I get the same baggy crotch problem you described. I think there is too much focus in sewing on circumference measurements but not how the measurements are distributed front-to-back. Pants aren't like skirts - the waistband can't rotate around you - so your smallest half-circumference in the front and back can be at different heights.

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  13. These look great- I prefer the high in the back low in the front look as well

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  15. I really think this is the future of trouser making for us ladies with bodacious butts. I can never find trousers that are both low enough in the front and high enough in the back.
    High fives!

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  16. My life story involves adding 1- 1 1/2 inch to the back via a wedge :) Gotta have butt coverage!

    Love the yellow!! So "in" for spring.

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  17. I have a rather round behind and a waist that tilts down in the front so the high in back low in front is a MUST. Thanks for the recommendation of the Craftsy class. I've had it on my wishlist for awhile but couldn't decide if it was worth it. Sounds like it is!

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