We just got some great news in my family – my daughter is expecting a new baby in January! Now, while this means many great and wonderful things – it also means thinking about the clothing she will be wearing for the next several months. She has a career job that requires her to wear suits to work each day – and she would rather not go out and buy new slacks for all her suit jackets. She is a very tall woman who has difficulty finding slacks that fit correctly off the rack.
So, we decided to alter her existing pants instead of buying (or making) new ones. And the pants can be altered right back to their original size later on.
I started with a pair of her existing slacks. Sorry, I didn’t get a picture before we cut the pants up – but they were originally purchased at The Limited, so you have an idea of what they looked like. The pants had a low-cut waist line, so I removed the waistband and the zipper (which was only 4″ long), then I sewed a maternity band into her pants where the waistband had been. Here is a picture of the pieces I removed, and with the maternity band added.
When she is ready, I will just reverse these steps and add the waistband and zipper back into the pants. If the pants had a higher waist line originally, then I would have measured up from the crotch 8″ and cut the rest of the pants off. Use a 1/2″ seam so the maternity band will start about 7 1/2″ above the crotch.
I’ll be doing this with all of her pants, it’s very easy to do, saves some money (and shopping time) and she loves the results!
One important thing to note, this method uses a maternity band (sometimes called a belly band), and NOT a maternity panel. Maternity panels require you to cut up your pants much more than using the band does, and while it is possible for a skilled seamstress to restore the pants after the alteration is done using panels, they would never look quite the same.
Sheila Reinke, Heart of Sewing