Adding a gusset to pants pt.2

Continuing where we left off yesterday, I’m not sure what to show you first -the process or the result? Oh what the heck. Let’s do results first so you can know whether you want to follow along.

I have to apologize for the discoloration in these (new) photos. Mr. F-I came home too late to shoot these in natural light. I may reshoot them tonight (if he’s home on time) and amend this entry. First the front. On the left is pre-surgery. Right is post gusset insertion.

Now onto the back, the original is on the left and the modified version on the right.

Right off the bat, the first thing that should strike you is that the points I made in Anatomy of a Camel Toe pt.2 are demonstrated in the flesh. The camel toe (hereafter abbreviated CT) is eliminated but we still have her brother Wad. In CT pt.2, I explained that some companies -I can only imagine to increase marker yield- have trimmed the side seams of pants and grafted what was subtracted from there, onto the CF/CB crotch line. This has the effect of shortening the crotch line. While the subtraction and addition cancel each other out in total girth -say in a simple undarted skirt- they don’t when it comes to a bifurcated pant. Reducing your fabric costs by shaving the side seam and adding to the CF/CB creates other problems. Specifically, you have two possible results and perhaps a combination of the two. If the pants are snug, you get a CT. If the crotch line is baggier to start with (as I made it baggier with the addition of the gusset), you can end up with CT’s big brother Wad which is what we have now. Off to the side is an illustration.

The only possible cure for a Wad -assuming the pant is roomy enough at the side seam- is to take the excess fabric out of the CF and CB seam but There. Is. No. Way. I. Am. Going. To. Fix. That. You can’t make me. So the end result here is I’ve eliminated the CT by lengthening the crotch with a gusset but now the underlying Wad is unmasked. I really hate how they make jeans and pants these days. The end result is these pants are wearable for the purpose but no sample of beauty or engineering.

How to design the gusset
First open your crotch, guesstimate the length of gusset you’ll need. For mine, I planned a length of 4 1/4″ off to either side of CF/CB. Mark the ends with a wax pencil or something as shown below.

You also need an approximate gusset depth. I’d decided 2″ was good. Now, this is such a simple draft, I did it right on the fabric rather than drafting on paper. By the way, this is all done on the bias, not the straight of grain. Draw in a cross line along the bias that represents the total desired depth. Extend the depth line in both directions the amount of seam allowance -I used 3/8″- as illustrated below.

Now, from the center point depth line of the gusset, draw a line the same length as your crotch opening, making it diamond shaped to end up on the baseline. Again, below.

Repeat this for all sides. You should now end up with a diamond shaped thingy. b.e.l.o.w.

Now, you can cut it out as is but really, those points are unnecessary. You can round them off. It’s much easier and no, the gusset police will not come and get you for this. For the life of me, I don’t know who invented this “rule”. I’ve been rounding off the center points of my gussets forever; these are so much easier to sew. In fact, you might want to make your gusset depth just a bit deeper to compensate for this trimming off.

Because this whole thing was done on the fly, the draft (drawing on the bias with a wide leaded wax pencil is not optimal) it is possible your gusset may not fit perfectly. Mine did not. This is not a problem. You can trim it off on the too long side to match. Obviously this wouldn’t work for an actual pattern draft but this is an on-the-fly alteration so I’m not going to be crazed about it. Oopsie shown below.

Anyway, here is the finished result of the gusset applied. I hope you never need to do this but this should come in handy if you do.

Related: Jeans and pants fitting tutorials
Jeans fit so lousy these days
Jeans fit so lousy these days pt. 2
Yet another pet peeve: Waistbands
Anatomy of a Camel Toe pt.1
Anatomy of a Camel Toe pt.2
How to fix a camel toe
Adding a gusset to pants pt.1
Adding a gusset to pants pt.2

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