A while back I posted about upsizing jeans, adding an inch on either side to make them bigger. Last weekend, I altered a pair of my husband’s corduroys to make them smaller.
My husband decided to clear out his wardrobe. I have written on this blog, many times, about the importance of a cleared-out wardrobe; how cathartic it can be, how important it is not to hold onto things if you never wear them. But my husband was so ruthless with his clothes that he made me look like a hoarder. He was so thorough that I worried he wouldn’t have anything left to wear. So I tried to show some restraint myself, and only saved one thing from the charity shop bag: a pair of navy corduroy trousers.
Of course, they were far too big and Sunday afternoon was spent making them fit. First, I had to think about how I wanted them to fit. Corduroy is a thick, heavy, material and works best, I think, with more masculine cuts – so I decided to keep the legs straight rather than narrow-fitting. Secondly, I had to decide where I wanted them to sit on my waist. I know that high-waisted is fashionable at the moment but I don’t think it suits me and I don’t find it particularly comfortable, so I decided that they would sit on my hips. That meant that the crotch was going to be quite low because I didn’t want to make the alterations too complicated, but that was in keeping with the masculine style that I was going for.
The first thing I did was unpick the waistband at the back and sides, keeping it attached at the front because I didn’t want to make any changes to the flies. I unpicked the hems on the trouser legs too. Then I used safety pins to take the trousers in an inch on both sides from the top of the trousers all the way down the leg to the bottom. I tried them on a few times, altering the safety pins slightly to give the trousers a bit of a curve around my hips. Then I ran two rows of stitches down the legs to make sure that the new seam would be secure.
I don’t have an overlocker and the material was too thick to french seam, so I used pinking shears to cut away the excess fabric to avoid it fraying. I re-hemmed the trouser legs. When I reattached the waistband, I made a new seam in the centre back so that I could take out the excess fabric.