14 November 2008

More D.I.Y. Guerilla Tailoring

After having recently complained about some shoddy hems that were way too long, I decided to take matters into my own hands. I taught myself how to produce cuffed hems, on dress slacks by hand (without a sewing machine). If I do say so myself,I'm happily surprised with the results:

The first pair I tried were these dark grey J.Press flannels. I bought them about a year ago at a thrift shop, never got around to having them tailored and never wore them, so I figured that even though they're nice pants I wouldn't miss them if I screwed up royally. But I didn't and now they fit like a glove.Next up was this pair of pleated grey flannels. I recently had these tailored, and I wore them the day after, and even posted about them. But I have a confession to make. They were so long that I wore them all day uncomfortably high. All shame on me, I picked them up without trying them on, so you can all go ahead and have a field day on that. When I took the pictures for the blog post, I settled the waist correctly, and made sure my feet weren't showing in the pictures. But all's well that ends well and they fit great now.

So have a look at this little secret I discovered when I took down the old hems:

Looks like somebody cut my pants too short, caught the mistake, fashioned a patch, hid it in the cuff and didn't inform me of it. Shame! All the more reason to do it myself.

Not to bust all tailors, though, because the Tartan slacks were repaired with fine hand made craftsmanship and care, by a more attentive professional. And there's nothing like a jacket that has been tailored properly, nothing.

How did I learn all this so quickly? I watched some videos on youtube about it, thought it over for a while and gave it a try. I don't advise this approach for everyone. To be fair, I have worked in men's clothing retail before in a shop with an in house tailoring department, and my Dad's Dad was a tailor and my Mom's Mom was a seamstress, so I have a good understanding of clothing construction. Plus, being a student at architecture school, I'm good at measuring things precisely with rulers. But if you're feeling confident, why not pick up a junker pair or two of slacks at the local thrift, never mind if they fit you, and give it a try. Knowing how to do it can't hurt, and you may wind up saving a couple of bucks.

1 comment:

Charles said...

Nice work. I know it's annoying to get a bunch of grief from tailors. I find I've had to get really snotty with them to get them to shut up.