Cyclist post

Grace of Badmomgoodmom asked about the adjustments I do for ‘cyclist legs’. You can interpret this as full thighs for pedaling for hours and hours to get from A to B.

My favourite ‘go to’ reference is “Fitting and pattern alteration: A multi-method approach to the art of style selection, fitting and alteration” by Liechty, Rashband and Pottberg-Steineckert. Or the big red book.

Above are three ways to add width to the top of the leg. This book always offers a number of ways to tackle a fit issue. I’ve used the slash method (see below).
Close up view
How did I figure the amount to open the leg? I added 1 cm to the front and the back. This then gave me 4cm extra width for my thighs. That’s a lot of extra thigh room.

This shows you the amount I added for the sway back and the deeper curve on the back piece. The first test shorts were 4cm too low at centre back so that’s how I knew how much to insert.


The book shows you the initial image with the drag lines so you can analyse what adjustments you need to make, if it’s just you, a camera and a family member on hand.


If I stop cycling and training, I might need to read about a ‘low buttocks curve’ adjustment.

Pattern drafting basics

For 6 weeks on Thursday nights after work I attended a pattern-making workshop and loved it. Yep. Local community colleges are gems for learning from industry experts.
Can you tell that I’ve finished my work studies yet? Got the certificates in their frames.

Below is a simple cowl neckline top drafted using a basic block bodice. I drafted every aspect of this top. Bodice, cap sleeves and peplum.

Dear niece #1 took these photos for me (big hug). The fabric was bought in Vanuatu a few years ago and it’s pure cotton so it’s a bit stiff. Inside the cowl neckline I’ve sewn in a big button so the cowl neck fold nicely to form a V. Littlest niece #2 was gobsmacked when I told her about the button inside the top. She refers to as the creative Aunty. And she gave me her Christmas make wish – make her a toy puppy. Who could say No to her? Not me.

The shorts are RTW but I now have a trouser block and the knowledge to draft shorts. Any shorts. Summer is here too so I’ll plunge into the stash and find an appropriate piece of fabric soon enough to test out a me-made shorts pattern (she says breathing deeply).

This is my second test top placing the front piece on bias. This time I sewed the cowl to the centre front seam.

The cowl forms a soft v-neckline and it’s cool to wear. Kirsty, I’m wearing RTW jeans too:)
Scary side view above. This pattern works well with an invisible zip down the centre back seam, so I have the self-drafted cowl top with the shaping I wanted. I wore it at our Melbourne meet up and didn’t catch any food crumbs.

I love commercial pattern as much as Peter of MPB. Confession: I caved and bought Grainline’s Maritime shorts pattern at Jen’s recent sale 🙂

What I am finding is more confidence to use any pattern knowing I can redraft pattern parts if I need to make it fit better. That’s what it’s all about for me. If I can make a pattern fit me, I can do the same for my family.

A much better trouser drafting write up
Cation Designs recently did a much more extensive trouser pattern drafting and a trouser fitting workshop at Canada’s College Fashion department. Go and read about her full-on learning experience. Her posts are extensive and worth reading if you’re in the midst of your own trouser making journey.

Thank you
… for continuing reading my blog posts.
I know there’s a problem with blogger comments on mobile phone. I’ve tested a few blogger blog comments and experienced the same problem.
The solution on blogger hasn’t worked and I’ve failed twice to install disqus. I’m planning to move across to wordpress – when I have done plenty more research and get enough courage and patience to press the ‘go’ button. Fingers crossed!
 I would have said ‘wish me luck but … oh blogger 😦