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Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Fitting Pants - How To Eliminate A Keyhole Crotch

Fitting Pants

Sewing Friends:

Fitting pants is the greatest challenge to many of us, but it is possible no matter what your size or shape. Whether you sew or buy ready-to-wear pants and your crotch is too short, you can easily fix the problem.

I call a too short crotch a "keyhole crotch" because that what it looks like to me.
Read the following article to learn how to eliminate a keyhole crotch.

It just makes sense!

To Your Sewing Success,


PS: Let me know if this helps. I love to hear from you. Put your comments here on my blog.


Fitting Pants - How To Eliminate A Keyhole Crotch

- by Marian Lewis

©2006 Marian Lewis - All Rights Reserved

1st Step To Sewing Success

Fitting Pants - How To Eliminate A Keyhole Crotch

Fitting pants is the greatest challenge, but it is possible no matter what your size or shape.

Whether you sew your pants or buy ready-to-wear, one of the most common obvious problems is a "keyhole crotch". Keyhole crotches are usually found on people who wear tight fitting pants. The crotch fits quite snug against the body. In fact, the pants crotch is too short and the body pushes down on the seam trying to find room.

This creates a "keyhole" effect right at the crotch and is not pretty.

If you wear snug fitting pants, or you think your crotch is too short, check in the mirror to see if you have a "keyhole crotch". If you do and want to see how much better your pants might look if the "keyhole" were eliminated, do this:

Loosen your waistband and gently pull your pants down on your hips while you watch in the mirror. Keep lowering your pants until the "keyhole" disappears and your crotch looks smooth. Doesn't that really improve the look of your pants? Wouldn't they be more comfortable to wear?

Now, note how much you had to lower your pants to achieve the smooth look.

That is how much you need to lower your crotch. It just makes sense!

You have to make the crotch circle bigger to accommodate your body. You need to stitch the curved area of the crotch deeper. I know that normally stitching something deeper (like a side seam) usually makes the garment smaller, but in the case of a circle (like a crotch curve or armhole), stitching deeper makes the circle larger. Of course, to get the larger circle, you absolutely must trim away the excess fabric leaving only about one quarter of an inch seam allowance.

A proper fitting crotch seam should just barely touch the body, not "grab" it or push into it.

For ready-to-wear or already sewn pants, here is how to fix the crotch.

At the inner leg crotch seam, mark the depth you determined you needed with a pin. Now, draw the curve up to join the straight line of the center front and center back

Stitch on this drawn line blending in to the center front and center back seam lines. Trim away the excess fabric leaving only about a quarter inch seam allowance in the crotch curve area.

Try on the pants and recheck the fit.

If you aren't sure how much to lower the crotch, try lowering it only a quarter of an inch at a time, trimming away the excess each time and checking the pants fit each time until you get it to look smooth.

To correct your pants pattern for future pants that you sew, lower the crotch level the amount that you determined that you needed. At the hipline on both of the front and back pants pattern pieces, slash and spread the pattern the amount you need to lower the crotch. Make sure you maintain the grain line of the pants when you slash and spread. Now, all future pants will fit the crotch properly.

Eliminating the "keyhole" crotch will create more comfortable, better looking, better fitting pants.

Try it. It just makes sense!


End Of Article


PS: If you enjoyed this article or have a comment, please do so here on my Sewing Blog.

Actually, you can check out most of my articles here. You might find something that interests you. I welcome your feedback :-)


If you have sewing related questions that you would like to have answered, ask them here or at:

I'll do my best to answer them for you.


Marian Lewis is a sewing instructor, author and creator of an amazing new fitting method for hard-to-fit sewing folks who want great fitting skirts and pants. In her mini-course ebook, she teaches step-by-step common sense techniques how to find out WHAT you really need, WHERE you really need it and HOW to apply that to a commercial sewing pattern.

Marian is also the author of many articles and other mini-course ebooks related to sewing highlighting, "It Doesn't LOOK Homemade"Sewing Techniques. Copy and paste the link now to check out her website at:


Discover Fitting And Sewing SecretsTo Achieve Sewing Success.

For information on the mini-course ebook:

"Common Sense Fitting Method For Hard-To-Fit Sewing Folks Who Want Great Fitting Skirts And Pants"

Copy and paste the link:


For information on the mini-course ebook:

"Sew A Tee Pee And Accessories For Your Tribe Of Kids"

Copy and paste the link:


For information on the mini-course ebook:

"Classy Designer Straight Skirt"

Copy and paste the link:



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Fitting pants


Anonymous Anonymous said...

OMG! You are the only other person who calls it a "keyhole crotch"!! I was trying to explain this term/phenomenon to my husband and googled it and found your site! Thanks for the explaination and the validation ;)

1:49 AM  

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