How to alter the Tippi pattern to a boy pant.

I got asked the other day, how to alter the Tippi pattern into a boy pant, so I thought I'd stick a tutorial up on how I would go about it. I have left all my workings out on one piece so you can see and compare how they sit from one piece to the other.

The light blue is the Tippi pattern, the dark blue with the yellow stripes is the new pattern.

The red lines are your anchor lines and the pink are your shifting lines.

Front pattern piece of Tippi

Draw around the pattern piece, all the patterns that are available on this website have a separate gusset piece, this makes altering the pattern piece easier as you don't have to worry about re-shaping the gusset piece back in.

Basically if you have a brief shape you're happy with and want to alter it to a boy pant brief I start with the following .

1. Lower the waist - boy pants should sit lower and more on the hips, depending on the style I would lower by 1cm. (pink guide line 1cm, shift the pattern down and draw in the new waist line)

2. The depth of the side seam needs to deeper so on this pattern I have deepened the side seam by 4cm. Also as the brief is sitting more on the hips then your legs have to be wider, as the briefs won't be sitting on the natural crease of the leg, but will be sat across your hips. Usually the legs are also seam covered or if elastic is attached there won't be as much tension on the elastic as the previous briefs (the tippi ones).

(pink guide line 4cm, shift the pattern down, also shift edge of pattern to the red vertical guide line of 2cm and draw in bottom of side seam and legs corner.

3. Connect top of side seam to bottom of seam seam using a ruler.

5. Draw in new leg shape, blending into the gusset area (approx 2cm up from the bottom), the curve of the leg can be done either with a french curve or the brief pattern.

Remember the new leg curve has to come up  and then go down to the side seam, rather than just curving into the side seam, this allows for ease and movement of the legs. (if you're unsure if you have done this correct,  get a set square and from the vertical guide line, square off into the bottom of the side seam, and you should see that part of new leg line is above the horizontal line (set square).

altering pattern to a boy pant

Back Pattern piece of Tippi

The back brief measurements are the same increase as the front.

1. However to start with, re-join the back brief pieces (the Tippi brief is in two parts, to allow two fabrics to be used). It's easier to re-join your pieces at the start, knowing that they work and cut them up afterwards re-adding the seam allowance.

2. I drew 1.2cm on the top piece so the pieces would re-sit flush again (pink dotted line: 6mm seam allowance plus 6mm seam allowance).

3. Follow the same order as the front pattern piece (waist, side seam and legs). This time with the legs you're making the new line (once it's blending into the gusset seam and side seam),  as straight as possible with a slight curve outwards. This is because with a boy pant it covers the butt cheeks more, than a bikini style brief. and doesn't have to sit flush against the skin.

4. For the window part of the brief (lower part) I extended the seam curve line out (blue dotted line), this pattern was then cut along this blue line, and 1.2cm was added along the line (the seam allowance as you chopped it off previously).

Remember to make a toile and adjust accordingly, but this is a good starting point for your boy pant.

altering the back pattern of tippi brief

How to attach elastic with zig-zag stitch

For a clean finish on your brief or top of the bra cup, the zig-zag stitch allows the elastic to stretch as when used on stretch fabrics like jersey or mesh.

1. With the right side of the fabric facing up, place (pin) the elastic on the edge of the fabric with decorative side facing in.

2. Sew the elastic with a zig-zag stitch to secure the elastic into place. You want the stitch as close to the decorative edge as possible and the edge of the fabric not to poke out past the elastic otherwise you'll be trimming the fabric before the next step. Keep your groove of your foot in line with edge of the elastic to ensure a straight stitch.

how to attache elastic with zig zag stitch

3. Turn the elastic back on itself so the elastic is now underneath when the right side of the fabric is facing up. You should just be able to see the edge of the elastic peeking out from the fabric. Secure with second row of zig-zag, the zig-zag should be near the edge of elastic so the elastic doesn't flip up and the edge of the fabric doesn't poke out. 



How to fix the curve of the leg flipping up

I'm in the process of sewing up the first toiles of the patterns that will available to buy in November this year (2016). I finished #2 pattern The Penelope, a tanga with fold-over elastic, and the curve of the front leg of the elastic, instead of sitting flat, stood up vertically, perpendicular to the brief. 

Has this ever happened to you? And do you know how to fix it? There is nothing worse than having spent all that time and effort sewing up a pair of briefs, for there to be an error and not know the reason why.

On this particular brief, it was all down to the elastic, it was too heavy and it didn't stretch very much. It was the type of elastic that would be best used on the top wing of the bra or maybe even the top of the bra cup.

As you stretch the elastic when stitching around the legs if it's too heavy it takes it's original form, it's not soft enough to sit flat. 

Other reasons that the elastic may flip up:

1. Would be if the curve of the leg is too sharp, so you would need to make the leg curve shallower.

2. The elastic is too wide so the elastic can't sit flat around the curve, so the only way it can sit is if it flips up.

I hope that helps? Also if you are new to elastic and can't gauge if an elastic is heavy or not, hold it up to the light and stretch it, the lighter it is then more light will shine through it. So a dense heavy elastic you won;t be able to see through it.

how to Draw a fashion model

I will be the first to admit, that I am not the greatest drawer when it comes to designing. However give me a sketch and I will be able to produce a pattern and handset a garment together that will fit. I prefer to design from seeing fabric, rather than plan out the design and go from there. 

This way hasn't always been the most productive though when in my younger years I had to prove my design abilities and have a portfolio showcasing my work. Along the way Ihave practised practised practised - until I found my own style. To help me I followed the rule of splitting the fashion model 5 times and taking a couple of mm off around the edge of the body.

For those of you who have read "How to become a Lingerie Designer" will recognise this picture, for those who haven't, this tip and a whole host of others can be found in the book to get you started.

How to spec a bra and brief

It's finally here. The book I've been mentioning for soooooo long, it went through edit after edit to make sure that it was fully understood, so aimed at complete novices and also people with knowledge. 

Providing industry knowledge on what to write on a spec sheet and how to write a spec sheet, this book should demystify specification sheets. With different blank spec sheets that can be used, for those wanting to make different sizes of their lingerie or get them made by a manufacturer then this book will take you there.

*This book is part of three, including How to write a tech pack, and How to grade a bra and brief.

You can buy it here:  e-book.



how to understand Lingerie Abbreviations

When reading a spec there are some lingerie abbreviations, learning them makes life a lot easier. 

understanding lingerie abbreviations

CF - centre front

CB - centre back

BP - Bust point

NL - neck line

OB - over bust

SS - side seam

UA - under arm

UB - under band

WB - waist band

H&E - hook and eye