Getting fit

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Nope, this isn’t about health, diet or exercise, but about trousers. Because let’s face it, unless you can afford tailor-made or are capable of making them for yourself, all of us are at the mercy of the Great British Highstreet and its dubious notion of ‘fit’. No room to fit my Great British Arse that’s for sure. But I have a few sneaky tricks for getting around this size-ist tyranny, and this is one of my particular favourites: how to take in the waistband on a pair of trousers.

You will need:

  1. A pair of trousers to modify – mine are a gorgeous pair of pinstripe pretties from Zara. I find this method works best on lighter weight fabrics, but you could just as easily try it on denim.
  2. Pins
  3. Sewing kit or sewing machine

Mousey helper named Roderick (he’s a posh mouse from Liberty), glass of milk and flapjack (not pictured) are optional but pleasurable extras.

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First, turn your trousers inside out. Next you need to find the centre of the back waistband, which is usually an obvious seam that runs all the way down the arse of the trousers to the crotch. As demonstrated below by my glamorous assistant.

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The aim here is to use this seam as a guide to re-shape the waistband and seat. I’m putting in a new line of stitching that runs parallel to the centre back seam but one centimetre in, effectively removing 2 centimetres (1 inch) from the size of the waistband. To do this I fold the back of the trousers in half along this seam, as shown above and below, and then put some pins in to mark where the new seam is going to go.

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If you’re going to sew by hand, I’d recommend doubling up your thread to make the seam really strong – the last thing you want is a trouser-splitting moment (which has happened to me before). I used the triple stitch on my sewing machine, which is really strong and ideal for trouser seams.

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Once your sewing is done, give everything a press with an iron and you’re done. Wear your altered trousers with the revolutionary pride that they deserve. I subject all my trousers to this treatment if I’m not happy with the fit, and it now takes me no more than half an hour from start to finish. Once you get the hang of it you need never submit to the trauma of ill-fitting trou ever again. Good luck, and let me know how you get on!

I’ll leave you now with some classic winter indoor blog photography. Oh yeah, work it baby.

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What do you think?