Make a pattern from your favorite pants

Here's how to easily copy any existing pant or trouser so you'll have a pattern for making new pants that fit the same, and a starting point to designing your own already fitted pants. It's a followup to my earlier video on copying a shirt and ONLY COVERS WHAT'S DIFFERENT about copying pants, so you should definitely watch the shirt video first! It's here:

Please drop in on my blog about pants, and about the book and DVD I created; that's the best place to ask any questions or make comments that I'll be sure to see. It's here:

Thanks and enjoy!

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Author Carolyne Kurgat (3 months)
Thanks be blzd

Author Chic Francisco (1 year)
God bless your video. :-)

Author ActinoRise (1 year)
thank you :)

Author attbogota (1 year)
Thank you, it's a very clear and helpful video!

Author Laura Arguelles (1 year)
Thanks, very usefull.

Author Jean Anderson (8 months)

Author Oscar Bella (1 year)
Very useful, I've spent the last year learning how to make patterns from
rtw clothes that fit really good, as it's so rare to find. Thank you for
taking the time to share your knowledge.

Author necchi nut (3 years)
OK I'll check that out thanks. Amateursewing @ gmail . com

Author Raven Light (3 years)
this was exactly what i have been searching up and down youtube for. Thank
you very much!!!!

Author simplythursday1029 (1 year)
Very informative.

Author David Coffin (2 years)
Sorry to be so slow to respond! I somehow missed the notification of your
comment. Unfortunately, the maker of my curves isn't making them any more,
but similar ones are easy to find. If you can only get one, I'd get the
Fairgate 24-in Vary Form ruler ; it'll handle hips, armholes and necklines.

Author SuchaCaligrrl (3 years)
What if I were to take the pants apart by the seam and used that as a
pattern?? How would that work.

Author Simon McAndrew (2 years)
Hope no one else already asked this but where is the shirt video you
mention in the opening moments of this video? perhaps you can put one of
those links in that you see on other videos... Please, Thanks!

Author Simon McAndrew (2 years)
oh! I see now I clicked "show more".

Author necchi nut (3 years)
I want to make a pattern for mens breeches with the small ballon on side of
thigh, I only have a German style breeches to copy but want to make the
U.S. style tight breeches, is there a paper pattern already available for
this?? mens size 36inch waist and 29" Inside leg, with zips on ankle and
small ballon on side beginning to extend from about 6 inches below waist to
about 4-5 inches at widest point of "ballon" then tapering in about 6
inches about the knee - any tips/suggestions??

Author moomoobrom (5 years)
Much quicker to learn basics of drafting a simple pair of trousers. Problem
with this method is that you don't show grain marking, and construction of
shaped waist bands- pocket bags, pocket facings, balance of pocket facing
etc etc... you can spot a poorly made pair of trousers from half a mile by
stressed/gapping pockets!

Author David Coffin (3 years)
@DCUPtoejuice This method is quick and dirty, which is fine if you already
like the way the pants you're copying fit. And if you want to make some
style changes such as you describe, just start playing with a copy of the
outlines you get; fold out a little horizontal length above the crotch,
same place F&B, to shorten the rise, and just redraw the long leg seams
from the thighs or knees down to restyle the leg width; take the same
amount off each side of each piece. Make muslin to test; repeat!

Author David Coffin (2 years)
I'm sorry, I don't really get what you mean by "factory". But I'd ask
somebody at the factory what they prefer if you're dealing with some
specific place that's going to make a garment from your copy. Personally,
I'd not cut it out, so whoever I took it to could make refinements and add
details on the same paper.

Author Wilma Fernandes (1 year)
Legal! Peça piloto tem que se de ótima qualidade ,vestir bem! De vemos
pegar medida do cliente pra conferir com a da peça piloto. Recursos de
costureiras praticas, comecei assim, bom!!!

Author AlovinofKeys (4 years)
when do you know to use a curve tool? and which one?

Author Alexandra G (2 years)
Great video. Thanks. Two questions, if I may: 1) I noticed your French
Curve and the smaller one. I'm in Canada, & the retail sewing shops in my
city only carry nasty, floppy plastic ones for about $30. (sigh) Can you
recommend a good source for these tools, one that provides value for
dollar, please? 2) There seem to be so many styles of those curly,
multi-curves like your small one. Can you advise which ones a new pattern
drafter should start with, please? Thanks! :)

Author imaspastichawk (1 year)
Really helpful, Thank you!

Author moomoobrom (5 years)
@DavidCoffin Yes I guess you're right, I was taught the old fashioned
way... which means that although in the past I have had to copy items;
rather than trace off, it was quicker and easier to draft from scratch.
When you're dealing with such simple shapes it becomes so much easier to
learn to do it properly! Once you have the basics then you can be creative
and make interesting things if the need arises.There are lots of good
pattern books out there, just go to your library!

Author David Coffin (2 years)
I find it easiest and most reliable to just fold the copied legs in half
from the bottom to the knees and use the crease as the grain line (same
thing, no?), but the method's adaptable, and SHOULD be adapted to your
preferences. I have noted that the bottom edge on lots of pants isn't
perpendicular to the grain; it's tilted down in back. Thanks for commenting!

Author 4barnsmammastube (3 years)
Thanks to this I now have two new par of pants. Many thanks!

Author Charles Voth (2 years)
Hello. I'm also looking for the "copying the shirt" video in your channel,
but cannot find it. Thanks.

Author David Coffin (2 years)
Check the full video description; the link to the shirt video's in there!

Author David Coffin (4 years)
Use a curve tool anytime you're marking down a final cutting or sewing
line, smoothing out a hand-drawn line, or anytime you want it clean,
unambiguous, smooth. I've accumulated a lot of curves over the years, but
the essentials are a smaller, rounder one for armholes, necks and crotch,
and a longer, flatter one for side- and in-seams. You slide the curve
around until you find a section that matches what you want, then move it to
match as much as you can in one go. Make the joins smooth; done!

Author David Coffin (3 years)
@LightOfRaven You're quite welcome; have fun!

Author Alexandra G (2 years)
Thank you for the advice: I'll check into it. Cheers!

Author Jimmy McGee (2 years)
Thanks for putting this online...I make ladies dresses but am desperate to
make some men's clothes for myself...but they seem so much more difficult!
Tomorrow I'm going to attempt a pair of fishtail/braces back trousers to
wear at my Lindy Hop classes....this will really help.
digforvictoryclothing is my dress shop.

Author DCUPtoejuice (3 years)
this is awesome. I am trying to find a posting on adjusting the rise of a
dress pant, to change a long rise to a shorter rise and narrow the legs at
the same time.

Author Lorena Anghel (1 year)
Where do i see your previous video about the shirt? Thx

Author David Coffin (3 years)
@amateursewing Three links I'd start with: The Great War: Styles & Patterns
of the 1910s book at amazon suitability. com cutterandtailor. com Good

Author David Coffin (5 years)
This is just a way to swipe the front, back and band shapes from basic
existing pants; you'll need to supply other detail patterns yourself (or
borrow them from my book). To establish the grain, fold the leg portions of
your tracings exactly in half and use the fold as the grain-line. This
method isn't appropriate for copying pants with a shaped band, yokes, or
any other complex pieces, but can give you a good place to start if you
have instructions on how to add those to a basic pattern; enjoy!

Author wins shaw (2 years)
Should i cut my pattern out before bringing it to the factory?

Author Ismael Feneque (2 years)
Great rub off video, But you may want to start with the grain line so that
the front and back legs are balance. Rule is to square the grain line to
the bottom opening and to the Knee line@ Center of both. Pattern Maker NYC

Author David Coffin (3 years)
@SuchaCaligrrl Besides being a lot more work and either wrecking the
original pants or requiring you to put them back together, the problem is
that unless the pants are brand new, never been worn, the separate pieces
will be somewhat distorted and likely to get even more distorted from
taking them apart and pressing to flatten them. The seams on the garment
protect the edges, especially any curves or diagonals. For complex garments
it's often the only way; pants are simple, so you don't have to.

Author Jane Doe (1 year)
Nice tutorial, I can learn from you.

Author David Coffin (1 year)
Check the full video description; the link to the shirt video's in there!

Author David Coffin (3 years)
@DCUPtoejuice You could also try just cutting away some at the waist of
each piece when shortening the rise, which would catch the increased
circumference as you go down from the original waist. Add pockets and
waistband details after you like the new, shorter basic pattern.

Author David Coffin (2 years)
A more complete basic set would include FairGate 24" Curve Sticks, a
smaller, tighter curve like the FairGate 12" Vary Form, and the FairGate
L-Square 24"x14". HTH! Google pgmdressform for some good kits, info, and
pictures you could use to find similar stuff elsewhere.

Author DCUPtoejuice (3 years)
@DCUPtoejuice thank you

Author MyKalliope (5 years)
Thank you very much for this! You are excellent at explaining what might
otherwise be complicated procedures. <3

Author maylayfox (4 years)
thank you! this was a wonderful video! I Ill use a lot of the the things i
learned that weren't obvious before~

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