Pattern matching

I should have some photos for you very soon of my beautiful silk blouse, but in the meantime, I’ve started thinking about sewing up my next pair of jeans, using some brand name Levis 3% lycra denim from Crybaby’s Boutique (though it appears to be sold out now!). It’s all washed and dried (in my neighbour’s tumble dryer) and pressed and ready to go, but now I have to decide whether I’ll stick with my tried and true jeans pattern, Burda World of Fashion 08/2006 #109, or whether I should a new pattern, BurdaStyle’s Anita skinny jeans pattern.

So my first thought was to compare the two patterns to see exactly how different Anita is from my usual pattern. It fits me like a glove, but has back darts rather than a yoke, which is my only aesthetic issue with it. Now, the BWOF pattern (in brown paper) does not have seam allowances and Anita (in white paper) does, so if the two patterns were exactly the same there should be 5/8 inch of white showing all the way around the edges.

Here’s the waistband pieces:

Now, despite the BWOF being a bit curvier, there’s not too much difference here apart from the back waistband on Anita being about an inch longer. A few people who’ve made this on BurdaStyle have commented on the back rise being too low when they bend over, so I think this might be part of the problem…

Then we come to the fronts:

The difference in the top left is just the scoop of the pocket, which has no bearing on fit, but look at that lack of seam allowance the whole way around! The finished hip size for a size 42 on Anita is 40 3/4 inches, giving it a downright scary 1/2 inch of wearing ease! I think the only way this would work is if you had very stretchy denim, so for my 3% (which hardly stretches at all), I think I would need to go up at least one size if I went with Anita to avoid cutting off all circulation from the waist down!

The other interesting part here is that the seam allowance appears in the crotch, meaning (I think) that the crotch depth (vertical length) stays the same and it’s just the width of the jeans (horizontal) that’s shrinking.

This is echoed in the back pieces:

Except that Anita has a bit more seam allowance play in the back than the pretty much non-existent ease/allowance in the front. The important thing here is that the crotch curves are nearly identical on both patterns (as you’d expect from two Burda relatives!), so the good fit I get in my BWOF pattern should still be there in the Anita, albeit a hell of a lot tighter. You can’t see the lower legs in these photos, but it surprised me how similar the cut is between the two, especially since I think of the BWOF pattern as being more boot cut than straight.

I think the end result of all this scientific study is that I’m going to trace out a new back piece for my BWOF pattern and use Anita’s yoke to cut a new one for it. My plan of attack is to:

  1. Trim of the seam allowances from Anita’s yoke
  2. Transfer the BWOF back dart to the side seams
  3. Subtract the yoke from the back piece

And this will at least have the added plus of having all pieces without seam allowances, which makes things much easier on my poor brain!

Oh, and in addition to the silk blouse, I also finished up all the lace handstitching inside my Jean Paul Gaultier skirt, so as soon as I can arrange a grand photoshoot I can wrap up my FW/07 Collection!

Also, it’s a long shot, but if anyone owns the 1980s sewing book “Simple Pattern Cutting” by Ann Ladbury, could you please leave a comment? I’ve got the basic blocks but no book and I just need to know the body measurements for the pattern sizes!

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