Pop quiz #465

I realize there’s a gap between quiz #462 and this one but the other ones are in process, not quite ready to post and I can’t rename this one since the photos belonging to the unpublished quizzes are already uploaded with the assigned file names. I’m posting this one ahead of schedule because it’s time dependent. This quiz is based on a scan from a book at auction on eBay. The book is called Minor and Major Alterations and How to Make Them published by Daroff & Sons Inc. Oops, checking that link I see bidding has ended but the link still works, just scroll down. At any rate, this is the page that drew my attention.

My question is, is this the best way to remove a pleat from the slacks front under most common and usual circumstances? If not, how is it done? Again, I’m not talking about anything weird or inordinate. I’m referring to professional standard practices in pattern making.

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11 comments

  1. Danielle says:

    Kathleen, I am loving these pop quizzes, even if I never seem to understand the diagrams I always end up learning something. Keep testing us =D

    This diagram confuses me because it seems like the fix (assumption: the fix is the dotted lines) has eliminated not only the pleat/dart but also the fabric between the pleat and the side seam. The waist will be too small I think.

    I would remove the pleat the same way, from the side, but just take out the depth of the pleat.

    Now I’ll just sit back and wait for someone to come up with the correct answer…

  2. Kathleen says:

    I’m glad you like them Danielle. I think Todd is mad at me after the last one and I know it annoyed others.

    I agree the sketch is a bit confusing, that dotted line closest to the left doesn’t make sense. In any event, the dotted lines toward the right side make me think this guy had a lot of nerve to charge for this. The correction would look entirely different (even accounting for that left side dotted line that doesn’t make sense -to me).

  3. J C Sprowls says:

    The way I read this diagram, the author suggests shifting the creaseline (i.e. dotted line) away from the true grain. I disagree with this.

    To remove a pleat, spread the front panel flat and recut the side seam. The creaseline of the orig front should be matched with the creasline of the new pattern. There might be a slight defect introduced at the side seam of about 1/4″ ~ 3/8″ due to waist shaping.

    The Daroff book (I have a copy) was geared toward merchant tailors and sales staff. What’s disappointing is that it doesn’t teach the sales staff how to mark (i.e. bushel) the garment so the alterationist knows what to do. Nor does it explain what is possible. Depending how the pocket is set down, this adjustment may not even be feasible.

  4. Esther says:

    I would slash from the dart tip to the side seam and pivot the dart closed. That would curve the waist up at point A. Alternatively, you could slash straight down from the dart tip some distance and then square out to the side seam and rotate the dart closed. Either way, it transfers the dart to the side seam and all that’s left is to smooth out the side seam. The dart could be transfered to the hemline if one didn’t mind adding width in that area.

    The suggested method eliminates the dart but doesn’t really give any additional room for the pants to fit properly. I think they would end up too small and the pants would have weird pull lines (and an ugly hip curve!).

    At least that is what I would do.

  5. anir says:

    I read the two broken lines differently. the one to the left i saw as one side of the pleat; so the pleat depth is equal to the area between the left broken line and the obsensible grainline: the solid line down the middle of the pants. Then there’s the small dart on the right side. It looks like the diagram suggests removing dart since if you add the width of the dart at the waist line with the width of the pleat at the waistline you get the distance the broken line on the right is from the right side seam edge of the pants on the waistline. Still that leaves a very hippy pant for a supposely male person.
    I agree with JC Sprowls that you may or may not be able to reset the pocket. Funny, i’m working taking out the pleats on a pair of pants and from my experience 1) you need to open the side seam to below the knee to get a smooth seam–so lower than the end of pleat 2) the pocket placement might make taking out the pleat impossible without a very complicated alteration 3) the new waistline edge is higher by the 3/4″ or so that JC says. It’s pretty easy to see IMHO but i still thought i’d put it on a body to check before i made anything permanent.

    The pants I’m altering have besom pockets that will be cut off when i take out the pleat. The fabric clear the pockets just have enough to make a side seam. I could make some more besoms but i’ll probably just go without pockets. A regular man’s pocket would not be hard to reset in the side, although if the line of the seam changed as much as it does in the diagram, the edge of the pocket would have to be recut.

  6. Todd Hudson says:

    Not ignoring you. Just busy.

    If this question is directed at a patternmaker altering a pattern for double pleated pants (as opposed to a shop tailor altering RTW), the answer begins with analyzing how the pleats were put into the normal pant block. I think the normal block was slashed down the center grain line to open up the main pleat, the CF was added on to the left (thus the acute angle), another small pleat was added and the side seam was extended to the right.

    To change it back to the normal pant block, I would move the CF at top so that the CF slants toward the right (at least 1/4″ past the straight or more), close up the main pleat, remove the other pleat and then, from the knee, curve the side seam to whatever the final measurement the waist should be. I don’t care if the CF grain (creaseline) is at the center of the pants at the waistline, however, it should end up at the center between the crotch point the side seam at that same depth. The center grainline (crease) should run through the center of the hem, knee and between the crotch point and side seam (on the seam lines).

    Note that when you slant the CF crotch line toward the right you’ll end up with an obtuse angle at the CF waist. You should make that a square angle and blend to rest of the waist line. The pattern picture above has an acute angle at the CF waist and it would bug me to deal with that when sewing and fitting.

    If this question is directed at a shop tailor being asked to alter RTW pants, I’d say “I don’t do alterations. Go somewhere else. And next time don’t buy pleated pants.”

  7. J C Sprowls says:

    Just a nit:

    Kathleen states that she’s specifically addressing “professional standard practices in pattern making”.

    Daroff’s book is aimed toward alterationists. Re-cutting an existing garment into a different style is not the same as “kosher” patternmaking.

    But, we all have to start, somewhere!

  8. AnnK says:

    Here’s how I’d make the correction: Cut a vertical line through the center of the dart down to the horizontal crotch line stopping just a fraction above it. Then cut the horizontal line (C) from the crotch to barely meet the vertical dart cut. Pivot the paper (upward and to the right) until the dart legs meet. Blend the crotch back to its original curve and lower the waist from CF to the former dart placement. This leaves the side seam untouched and preserves the overall drape of the leg.

  9. Babette says:

    If Armstrong is right about the way to add a pleat then the reverse – slash from waist to the hem and overlap by the amount of the pleat – should hold (shouldn’t it?)

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