Well, that was boring …

Well, that was boring …

but unfortunately, necessary.

A friend/co-worker was complaining last week that she had to give a few of her clothes away as they did not fit properly anymore.  I agreed.  I must have three or four pairs of pants that are now too big.  She scolded me, “… after all, you sew your own clothes … you can fix them” she declared.

oops!  I am shamed!

So I dredged through my closet and my drawers and found what doesn’t fit anymore and yes there are four pairs of pants that needed to be taken in, another pair with a broken zipper and another that needs hemming still (I guess that one is in the UFO category actually!)

So what did I do this last weekend … I did the alterations on my pants.  BOORRRING!

I did learn one thing though.

When I previously made these brown pants here, I attached the waist band according to the pattern instructions.  Pants finished first, then the complete waistband attached.

So to do the alterations – take my waist and hips in 1/2 inch on each side – I had to remove the waist band first to expose the side seam, 

fix 1

take in the side seam and the waistband 1/2 inch, 

fix 2

and re-attach the waistband.

fix 3

It was a bit of a process but it worked out just fine.  I continued on with the same procedure with my blue plants.  

My black pants were different though, surprisingly.  Apparently when I first sewed them up I attached the front of the waistband to the front of the pants and the back of the waistband to the back of the pants and then sewed all the way up the side seams right through to the edge of the waistband. I don’t have the faintest idea WHY I did it that way, but it was a lot easier to make needed alterations afterwards.

I unstitched the waistband from the inside of the pants so I could access the long side seam, 

fix 4

See … the side seam runs all the way up into the waistband, so I just stitched in the extra 1/2 inch all the way through the hips and waistline,

fix 5

and reattached the waistband.

fix 6

I think I might try to remember to attach my waistband front to the pants front and the waistband back to the pants back in the future.  It sure makes for quick alterations!  What do you think?

I’m happy I only have a few alterations to make.  I think Ali over at aka thimberlina has a whole wardrobe to alter!  Actually, I think she has been working hard altering her health first, and as a result her wardrobe!  Good for you Ali!

So be honest now – CONFESS – is your pile of repairs and alterations higher than your fabric stash?

Happy sewing!


Linda of Lányos Handmade / Nice dress! Thanks, I made it!!

👜I'm a PDF Sewing Pattern Designer and Maker of stylish, vegan, sustainable, repurposed Handbags and accessories at lanyoshandmade.com ✂️I'm a Sewing Blogger at nicedressthanksimadeit.com Creator of the #designindecember Sewing Challenge

Reader Comments

  1. I have just altered a beautiful pair of linen pants that were too large for me, a job that has been waiting to be done for quite some time. I also started to alter another pair of pants but these are proving to be more tricky and have been put to one side, just for a little bit longer. 🙂

  2. Alterations are such a pain, good on you for getting them done. When altering my brothers school pants once I noticed the centre back seam ran all the way up in the waistband. It had a very large seam allowance, so I assume this was to facilitate easy alterations. It certainly did the trick for me!

  3. Men’s trousers often have the waistband done like your black pair. It is a much better system as alterations are easier. If you inspect a pair you will see that the back seam is larger so they can be let out more easily.

  4. Women’s clothes are sewn, men’s are tailored, another example of male privelege? I have never seen women’s suits with that extra seam to alter. Men’s suit jackets are also designed with easy alterations in mind. It was a cinch to alter DH’s pants until he started wearing jeans almost exclusively. They can be taken in, with some difficulty, but not let out.

  5. I hate doing alterations. Picking seams out was never my strong suit. I rely on the 3 stage closet. It is like living with the 3 bears, I have a small, medium and a large section. I always tell myself I will throw out the large section when I make it back to medium but then I chicken out and just put it in a large Tupperware container under my bed. But, now that I know my sister likes to do alterations well….

  6. Congratulations! I avoid alterations like the plague normally, though once did a two week marathon of reducing a huge pile of one daughters clothes by a couple of sizes. At the finish line, I felt like I never wanted to see another zip.

  7. I ended up sending lots of my alterations pile either back into storage (in case I get pregnant again) or to charity. It was too overwhelming!

  8. Oh my goodness, I HATE alterations! =’D Luckily I rarely have any to do, but usually they are for the husband, which makes them that much more of a chore. I have repaired jeans multiple times but never right away–I suppose I hope that if I avoid them, they’ll fix themselves? 😉 But the real “winner” has to be a knit top of his that he asked me to fix. He had torn a hole in the sleeve, not on a seam, and asked if I would just remove the cuff bands and reattach them higher, thus removing the hole and preserving the shirt. I sat on that shirt–literally, it ended up on my sewing chair cushion and I would sit right on top of it–for A YEAR before I finally got it done. It was such a simple fix, especially with a serger, but I couldn’t bring myself to devote any time to it. In fact, Tom had forgotten all about that shirt by the time I presented it to him, all fixed up, haha!

  9. Nope, I confess I love alterations because I get new wearables in under a day – which never happens when I sew because I am the slowest sewer in the universe!

  10. God yes, I loathe alterations. I’ve got a huge pile of things stacked up to fix or change and I never feel like tackling it compared to making something new. The only thing that’s worse is other people’s alterations..!

  11. Well done! I have an alteration I have to do for someone who just “dropped this LITTLE task” on me. it is really a small thing. But it is creating a complete bottleneck in the sewing flow (well for one thing I have to put other colour thread on the overlocker….) Aaargh! Alterations require a special kind of discipline…good on you for pushing through!

  12. Ladies, ladies, ladies…alterations are a teaching tool! You never know the sewing sequence until to start to back track the original stitching. Try working on wedding gowns…keeping track of sequences just so you can get the dress back to looking right and not like a grandma had her way with it. If we are making pants etc for ourselves, why can’t we make the seams work for us later on? When I make dresses for my daughter 3000 miles away and the last seam to be sewn is the side seam, not the waist seams, as then the dress can be altered very easily if needed. So Linda, you have some “new” pants to wear and enjoy…good for you for sticking to the job at hand!

  13. Are you spying on me? I have just had a trawl through my wardrobe with the intention of clearing the dead wood and ended up with about half a dozen garments for alteration hanging on my workroom door. I might even get round to doing them sometime…

  14. I’m not entirely sure why you were deleted from my reader list, it wasn’t by me, but now you’re back. I thought you weren’t writing posts but realised, through instagram, that you still were!! I’ve been doing similar type alterations, boring, but somehow satisfying since I can now bearly close my wardrobe doors??

    1. No harm done! I have to ask the young people all the time how to get on or get off this or that! I thought you were just busy with work, as I know you are quite quite busy with work! HAHA yes I am having a bit of difficulty finding hanger space in my wardrobe myself – I think I might have to take a serious look at what I actually wear and what should go to charity! Nice to see you on IG all the time and nice to have you back here!

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