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How To Alter Basic Pants Length

AppNote Number: ANBP0103


Depending on your needs, you may alter pants at several areas on the patterns.

  • Waist-line to Crotch-line. This area is the most complicated part of the pants. Unless you also want to alter the crotch length as well, do not make alterations in this area.

  • Crotch-line to Knee-line.

  • Knee-line to Hem-line.



First, draw an alteration line perpendicular to the grain line (see figure right).

Then, follow the directions below for adding or reducing pants length.

To Add Pants Length

  1. Cut pattern apart on alteration line.

  2. Glue or tape half of the pattern on another paper.

  3. Extend the grain line on the paper and mark the amount you want to add.

    If you work on crotch length, do not forget to divide the alteration amount evenly for each front and back pattern.

  4. Align the other half of pattern with the mark and grain line and tape it in place.

  5. Draw new seam lines.

To Reduce Pants Length

  1. Fold the pattern piece along the alteration line.

  2. Make a pleat one-half amount to be reduced.

    For crotch length alteration, divide the alteration amount evenly for each front and back pattern.

  3. Keep the pleat parallel to the alteration line and glue or tape the fold in place.

  4. Blend the seam lines.