Refashion pants - way to lengthen rise?

concretenprimrosesMay 9, 2012

I've been refashioning clothing and having a lot of fun. (I belong to the Refashion Coop blog and also posted this question there.) I have trouble buying pants because the rise and the legs are both too short. Has anyone ever lengthened the rise of pants that are already made?

The ideas I have would interfere with the zipper so I'd probably have to put in a new one.

Thoughts? (other than making my own from scratch, which I may come to.)

I have put a link below to my post at the Refashion Coop. Some of you might be interested in this blog as well.


Here is a link that might be useful: Refashion Coop

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There is no way to lengthen the rise of pants unless you add a piece of fabric. You can't make longer what is not there. Of course you would have to put in a new zipper too. You could start with a larger longer pair of pants and rip them apart and make a pair to fit you using the pieces but that sounds like more work than making a pair from scratch with new material.

I did a lot of what you call refashioning when I was young to save money and that's the only reason I would do it

    Bookmark   May 9, 2012 at 10:09PM
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Thank you for your answer. I guess there is no magic bullet! But I thought I'd check to see if anyone had any suggestions.
I am finding that refashioning is improving my sewing skills, and if I make a mistake/don't like the end result on a thrifted or old piece of clothing the fact that there is minimal financial loss IS appealing.
Some things you just can't get any other way - as is true of sewing from scratch. Like these shoes I recovered with fabric. Not sewing, but it is fabric and I made a pattern. Some people sew around the bottom before gluing. I definitely can't buy them anywhere!

Happy sewing.

    Bookmark   May 9, 2012 at 11:33PM
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Some of the things we used to do in the 70s to save favorite jeans were adding contrast or print to the hems, making appliques to patch holes, making button holes(or grommets if you had the tools)to replace zippers and using shoelaces for closure. To change straight-legged pants to flared, we'd split the outside leg seam 10"-12" up and add contrast or print fabric to the space.
I never did this(but seems do-able to me), but could you replace the waistband with a wider one and add buttons or snaps(or as you mentioned, a longer zipper)and co-ordinate the fabric with bands to lengthen the hems?

    Bookmark   May 10, 2012 at 11:04AM
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A wider waistband is a good idea, thanks.

    Bookmark   May 10, 2012 at 6:03PM
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I can tell you how to get a little more room in the rise, but the legs will still be too short. Put your hand down the right leg, all the way to the hem. Grab the hem of the left leg,and turn the whole garment inside out (left leg inside the right leg)

You now have a view of the crotch curve. Starting at nothing at the zipper on the front, draw a new, lower curve that merges into the center seam maybe one quarter of the way up the back center seam.

    Bookmark   May 10, 2012 at 9:22PM
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Thanks Eva, I will definitely try this.

    Bookmark   May 11, 2012 at 6:40PM
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Annie Deighnaugh

Yes you can lengthen the rise...meaning lowering the crotch. You can't raise the crotch, meaning shortening the rise as that means adding more fabric.

    Bookmark   June 5, 2012 at 8:39PM
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That is an interesting point. Shortening is the one that would take more fabric. I don't have a pair to try lengthening on right now. Haven't found any that I want to at thrifts when I have gone. I did buy a pair of what looks like men's pants in a cool fabric. Already has a long enough rise but otherwise too big. I'm just desparate for pants to wear to work.
If I have any luck one of these days I'll let you all know.
Thank you again for helping me think about this.

    Bookmark   June 6, 2012 at 4:50PM
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My favorite comfy pants have wide stretchy waistband almost like sweat pants. Since i always wear my shirts out, I would be tempted to do this to other pants.

    Bookmark   July 7, 2012 at 1:00AM
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take the crotch area apart... and you add a little "gussett" on the back panel of each leg. the gussett can be cut at about 6" long... allow for seams and add in what you need... usually no more than about 2 inches ... more willwork IF they are a really large size, up to 2" usually works
Legs can only be faced...Once the legs have been hemmed and cut, there is NO way to make them much longer again... Facing them, OR sometimes letting the hem down all the way, making a mock cuff to sew on... might add a little more lenght IF youhave that fabric that was orig cut oFf, that is rarelythe case

    Bookmark   August 12, 2012 at 5:12PM
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I alter patterns to do similar things. Never tried on pre-made, BUT

I have never in my life had pants truly fit. Discovered my crotch/inseam measurement is off their chart. So I take a pattern and I find the difference. I then add over the top of the pattern and use the pattern with further adjustments. My front addition was less than my back. To align the sides I would put small gathers on the back pieces. Seam up as usual

So the wider waistband should work for a simple alteration. New zipper or just add a fun over zipper closure (grommets, buttons, a pass thru placard with a loop for a lock--think treasure chest lock). If more length is needed in one half than the other some side seam reworking might be needed.

    Bookmark   August 14, 2012 at 1:31PM
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