Sunday, January 24, 2016

How to make it work with a too big waistband

Being a petite lady can make it difficult to find something off the rack that fits just right. Most garments fit giant and oversized, which, fortunately for us, has now become a popular silhouette, but I like to try out other styles too. For me a major issue is waistbands on everything: skirts, pants, shorts, belts, everything. Too many times I have fallen in love with a fabric or style and bought something that is too big, promising myself that I would take it apart and resew it for the perfect fit. Instead it just sits in my "to-do" pile unworn, either completely untouched or in pieces. So instead of being inspired to tackle these projects, I came up with creative (lazy) ways to fix the fit without completely reconstructing it. Here are a few of the shortcuts I have used in the past.


The Easy Elastic Fix

I instantly fell in love with the pattern of these shorts! It was a final sale item online, and typically I would never purchase something that I haven't tried on and couldn't return, but I just couldn't pass them up. Luckily, they were only a couple inches too big, so I was able to fix it with a piece of elastic I already had.

First I measured only the back side of my waist (not all the way around), subtracted 1 inch, and cut my elastic. Pin each end of the elastic on the inside to each side seam then pull the waistband straight so that the elastic is stretched all the way across, and sew the elastic down. This is easier to do with a sewing machine, but I sewed it by hand. You might have to get creative to stretch the elastic and sew at the same time. I held one end between my knees, stretched it with one hand and sewed with the other. You can also try hooking the waistband onto some heavy furniture, or asking a friend to hold it and chat with you as you sew.

When you're finished, the back waistband should slightly gather and fit snugly, but not too tight. This works best with thin, flowy fabrics.



Put a Belt on It


I bought this skirt quite a few years ago with false hopes that I might still be growing. I've probably grown about 1/10 of an inch since then, so needless to say, its still pretty big. This trick is similar to the elastic fix, but less permanent and quicker. It's pretty simple, you just put a belt on! The trick to making it work is to make sure the fabric is evenly distributed so that it looks intentional and not just bunched up. I prefer to use a wider stretchy belt so that it covers more of the fabric and its more secure. This can also works for jeans that are slightly too wide, although jeans are less forgiving.

Poke a Hole in It

This tip requires a special tool, but it has so many uses! If you have a belt that's notch is not far enough to fit, you can use a leather hole punch to place a hole in the perfect place. Make some cool knots and tucks with the excess length.As a bonus, this also works for purse and shoe straps with a buckle.