If your pair of wool trousers needs any sort of alteration so that it has a customized fit, you would probably take it to the tailor, right? This is not the case with jeans that also require some nips and tucks to fit perfectly. Although most of them are just about perfect, chances are they could use some customization, especially in difficult-to-alter areas (i.e. the hips). So, why not let the experienced hands of a tailor alter your favorite pair of jeans to the utterly perfect fit? Below is what you can expect from trusting your jeans to a tailor and when it’s better just buy a new pair of significantly less challenging jeans.
But first, let’s talk about…
Best Jeans Per Body Type:
1. Hourglass Figure
A flare or bootcut jean looks great on you. Flaring out to wider hems and fitted through the thighs, it is a very flattering silhouette that shows off your best assets and helps balance out the generous hips. Ask for a pair designed for women with curves that feature contour waistbands, plenty of stretch in the fabric (ultra necessary so that your jeans don’t gap at the waist and follow your curves nicely) and a higher front rise.
If you can’t imagine yourself without the look of skinny jeans, you can opt for a slim-fitting style (rather than a pair that’s too tight), avoiding anything that could visually widen your body (i.e. fading at the hips).
2. Plus-Size Figure
A straight jean, especially a dark wash denim, will look marvelous on you as it will help balance your fuller behind and hips and skim over your curves while elongating your legs at the same time. However, flare and bootcut styles will also do a great job slenderizing your figure instead of just squeezing your curves or squashing your legs.
As long as the jean you have selected skims the floor, giving you the illusion of longer legs, you can be sure your legs won’t look stumpy. As for the fit, better go for a classic mid-rise style that won’t accentuate your belly like a high- or low-waist style will do.
3. Boy-Shaped Figure
Many women with slim-hipped boy silhouette have a flattering booty that with the right pair of jeans can be played up even more. To create the much-desired curvy figure, consider skinny jeans from top to bottom. Decorative stitching, pockets with flaps or those that sit higher on the butt or any other kind of embellishments will help draw all eyes to the proud area. On the other hand, styles with a high waist and wider hems will deliver the opposite result.
4. Pear Shape
A trouser jean with broad waistband and snug rear fit will help women that are smaller above the waist and fuller through their bottom, hips, and thighs as it will make the legs look longer and create a continuous line from their waist down.
You may also fake the look of skinny jeans with straight leg jeans that are cut to make a pear-shaped body look skinnier.
Stay away from jeans with back pockets that are also too small. An ample behind does not look flattering.
5. Petite Figure
The ideal pair of jeans for shorter women is one that make them look taller and elongate the legs. For that reason, a straight leg jean is a great candidate, especially darker wash denim instead of paler hues and pastels, to make your lower half look longer. Needless to say, the tighter the jean, the better as baggy styles won’t flatter your petite physique. However, you need slim-fitting jeans and not jeans with extra-tapered hems. Also, ankle-length and skinny jeans should be avoided as they make you look shorter and more petite respectively.
Now that we have talked a bit about what type of cut best fits your body, here’s how to tailor them.
Challenges Involved in Altering Jeans
When you buy jeans, it is always great to know that you can alter them if they don’t fit perfectly. However, there are some alterations that are too difficult to make. Insisting on having them tailored will probably increase the cost of your purchase significantly so it’s best to pay attention to the 3 key areas that your jean should fit you will in : (1) Rise, (2) Hips, and (3) Crotch. If you have any issues in one of these areas (i.e. the jean squeezes you too tightly or sits too low/high), you should try to find a better-fitting pair.
What you CAN Alter in a Pair of Jeans
You can easily take in a bigger waist, remove excess length and baggy legs to make your jeans flatter your body. Here is how to do each!
1. Altering the Length
It is the easiest type of alteration one can make to jeans. You only need to cut off the excess fabric and redo the hems. The trick, though, is to redo them without having to cut the fabric. To achieve that, take the jeans to the tailor shop and try them on. The tailor will use pins or chalk to mark the right length. Just make sure you wear the shoes you will most often wear with that particular pair of jeans so that the tailor doesn’t cut it too short and that it doesn’t sweep the floor when you walk.
Then, there are 2 hem methods that you could ask from:
i) The European or Original Hem
Your tailor will remove the original hems, cut the excess fabric and then re-attach the hems of the jeans. It is a method that ensures the hems look perfect and, in many cases, it’s a much more preferred method since the tailor doesn’t need to reproduce the exact same stitching method, right thread and so on, which raise the difficulty level of the alteration.
Note: If you need to shorten your jeans for more than 2 inches, make sure the leg shape is also addressed, so its style doesn’t change. This is particularly significant with flare or bootcut jean styles. Also, distressed of faded jeans will also need to be properly cut so that the overall result is flattering.
ii) The Inside Hem method
It is a great method to take up your jeans that involves stitching the excess fabric under the extra length without cutting it. However, we believe that it is an excellent, short-term solution, though that doesn’t deliver the finished hem look. It is still a good option for those that haven’t decided how long they want their jeans to be.
2. Altering the Legs
So, you have found the perfect pair of jeans that fits very good through the hips and waist but is rather too baggy on the thighs. In this case, the tailor will pin or mark the legs of the jeans along the inseams, turn the jeans inside out, and sew the fabric. The excess fabric will be either sewn inside or cut away.
Now, if you want to take in the thighs and calves of the jeans, the tailor might also need to re-do the hem. As long as you don’t want any drastic changes to the style of your jeans (i.e. go from flare to skinny) that will cost you more than what you can pay for a new pair of skinny jeans, tapering the legs of the jeans is a pretty straightforward alteration for the experienced tailor. Of course, you can always change your straight leg jeans to skinny jeans.
3. Altering the Waist
It is a common problem of many curvaceous women that want a pair of jeans that fits perfectly on the waist. Unfortunately, most of the times, they end up with jeans that gap at the waist. An expert tailor will have no problem nipping the waistband in a bit. However, if the jeans you have tried on would require more than 1.5 inches to be taken in at the waist, it’s better to leave it back to the shelf and find a more figure-fitting pair of jeans or be ready to wear it with a belt. Otherwise, you will get into a whole lot of trouble (and unnecessary costs), asking your tailor to make changes to the hips, alter the front shaping of the jeans and change the pocket positioning.
Wash your jeans a few times in cold water (always turn them inside out) on the delicate cycle. Hang to dry and repeat a few times. This will help give the jeans their final after-original-shrinking length and shape.
Always bring or wear the shoes you will be wearing with that particular pair of jeans so that you know the tailor will mark the right length.
Ask the store you are buying your new jeans from whether t hey offer discounted or free hemming. Chances are you will need to pay a bit more if you want the original hems altered. However, you can take the jeans straight to a tailor. If you are new to an area and don’t know where to go, ask your local dry cleaning shop. They will recommend some professionals that you can probably also look up in your local listings under Tailors or Seamstresses.
Ask for feedback. The tailor you finally choose to trust will have to be experienced in altering denim and is up-to-date with the latest denim styling.
Have you encountered any other types of issues when trying to get that perfect fit from your jeans? Tell us about it.
and, if you have questions as to how to tailor your clothes, just drop us a line and we’ll reply post-haste!