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Tailoring Pants - Taking in vs. Letting Out

Discussion in 'Menswear Advice' started by scrollphaser, Feb 28, 2008.

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  1. scrollphaser

    scrollphaser Member

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    I could use some help and it looks like a lot of people here know what they are doing.
    I tried on a pair of slim fitting flat-front dress pants by Hugo Boss today.
    The opening at the bottom is 9" and seems to work good. My shoe is 10.5 B width.
    I originally tried on 33" but the tailor wanted to take in the waist and seat about a 1/2".
    I then tried 32", which seemed to fit better in the seat, but the waist was uncomfortably snug.
    He said he could let-out the 32" about a 1/2" in the waist only and not have to alter the seat.
    The 32" felt alright unbottoned and an extra 1/2" would probably do the trick.
    Which way is the norm? Is it ok to "let out" pants? Are there any side effects of doing so? Should I maybe just try finding a different pair of pants?
     
  2. Jared

    Jared Well-Known Member

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    Letting them out is the right thing to do. For slim pants, buy what fits your thighs and have the waist altered.
     
  3. trailer36

    trailer36 Well-Known Member

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    I agree 100%. You will be much happier with the fit if you let them out. I have made the mistake of buying suits with pants that are a 36 when I am a 34 waist. After they were taken in, they were much too baggy for my taste.
     
  4. Roger

    Roger Well-Known Member

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    I'd recommend taking-in, rather than letting-out. Particularly with any fabric other than, perhaps, wool. Letting out a pair of cotton or linen trousers will leave a line where they were originally stitched that will always be visible--even with subsequent ironing--and with a smooth worsted wool, you could have the same problem. There's no reason in the world that a pair of 33W pants couldn't be taken in to a 32.5W without the slightest problems in fit elsewhere. Any decent tailor can slim the whole waist-to thigh structure, and could, if necessary, slim-down the whole leg. A half-inch reduction would be trivially simple. I've had larger reductions work well on occasion. I've had, for example, 36W trousers taken in to 34W, with a complete rework of the hips, butt, and thighs, so that there is absolutely no bagginess. There are limits, of course, to how much a pair of trousers can be taken in before issues of balance and cut arise. The consensus seems to be that this limit is about 2 units of size (e.g., 34 to 32).
     
  5. gumercindo

    gumercindo Well-Known Member

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    Well, another useful trick is if your cotton trousers are a bit on the snug side and you don't want the tailor to let it out b/c of the visible stitching issue, you can always just have them move the clasp/button over a fraction of a cm. That avoids them having to let anything out.
     
  6. Philosoph

    Philosoph Well-Known Member

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    Member a tailor consistently recommends that you not worry about the waist. Buy the pants that fit you in the seat and thighs, and then alter the waist in/out appropriately.
     
    1 person likes this.
  7. Justin Wright

    Justin Wright Member

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    I've never had pants let out; but all the pants I've had taken in have all been disasters for the reasons heretofore written. I'm considering a similar question with off the rack suits. I am a 38R coat and a 33R pant. Problem is: most 38R suits come with a 32R pant. I have in the past purchased a 39R suit in order to get proper fitting pants, and then have the jacket slightly taken in. On the other hand, should I be buying a 38R suit and then have the pants let out?

    In other words, what's preferred:

    1. Buying a 38R suit with a jacket that fits properly off the rack, and then altering the pants; or,

    2. Buying a 39R suit with pants that fit properly off the rack, and then altering the jacket?

    I think this is a good discussion. While most are too concerned with suit manufacturers, canvassing, etc.; I happen to believe that fit should be the top criteria. In other words, you can wear the most highly regarded suit in the world; but if it doesn't fit properly, it's worthless.
     
  8. Luc-Emmanuel

    Luc-Emmanuel Well-Known Member

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    1. Buying a 38R suit with a jacket that fits properly off the rack, and then altering the pants; or,

    Do this. Altering the waist (letting out) on a pair of pants is easier and less costly than trying to alter a jacket which doesn't fit.
    I have sent pants to be altered, I got the waist and the seat taken in, the result was perfect. But I usually buy my right size which doesn't require waist alteration unless I happened to eat too much the previous month [​IMG]

    !luc
     
  9. noVA99

    noVA99 Well-Known Member

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    I would agree with it's best to let out.....I had tried on a Canali suit that was one size bigger than what I usually wear in Canali. The suit pants were baggy in the seat and thigh, with a little bit of waist that would had to be taken in. It would had to been hacked down in all areas for it to fit properly. I'm sure if I tried on one size smaller than my normal size, the pants in the seat and thigh would be fine, just the waist would have to be let out.
     
  10. gdl203

    gdl203 Well-Known Member

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    New York
    I've never had pants let out; but all the pants I've had taken in have all been disasters for the reasons heretofore written. I'm considering a similar question with off the rack suits. I am a 38R coat and a 33R pant. Problem is: most 38R suits come with a 32R pant. I have in the past purchased a 39R suit in order to get proper fitting pants, and then have the jacket slightly taken in. On the other hand, should I be buying a 38R suit and then have the pants let out?

    In other words, what's preferred:

    1. Buying a 38R suit with a jacket that fits properly off the rack, and then altering the pants; or,

    2. Buying a 39R suit with pants that fit properly off the rack, and then altering the jacket?

    I think this is a good discussion. While most are too concerned with suit manufacturers, canvassing, etc.; I happen to believe that fit should be the top criteria. In other words, you can wear the most highly regarded suit in the world; but if it doesn't fit properly, it's worthless.


    Clearly 1 is the better option
     
  11. breakfasteatre

    breakfasteatre Well-Known Member

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    Question, what kind of costs would i be looking at for:

    letting out a pair of slacks
    tapering
    hemming and cuffing

    I couldnt find anything in the search on the cost to do these and this post just happened to show up as i was about to make a new one
     
  12. gdl203

    gdl203 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    36,646
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    Jun 9, 2005
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    New York
    Question, what kind of costs would i be looking at for:

    letting out a pair of slacks
    tapering
    hemming and cuffing

    I couldnt find anything in the search on the cost to do these and this post just happened to show up as i was about to make a new one


    Varies wildly between cities and tailors. My tailor would charge $25, $30 and $20, respectively
     
  13. breakfasteatre

    breakfasteatre Well-Known Member

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    oh wow, there is a tailor a walk down the street from me, he told me 10 for the let out, 16.5 for the hem and cuff
     
  14. Tomasso

    Tomasso Well-Known Member

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    While most are too concerned with suit manufacturers, canvassing, etc.; I happen to believe that fit should be the top criteria. In other words, you can wear the most highly regarded suit in the world; but if it doesn't fit properly, it's worthless.
    Can I quote you on that?
     
  15. Justin Wright

    Justin Wright Member

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  16. binge

    binge Well-Known Member

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    As to the OP, for me it seems that with every pant that fits in the thighs/seat is a 36" waist with the waist being a bit loose, which I then have my tailor take in. In one instance a pair of 35" waisted pants fit great everywhere, so all I needed on those was cuffing.
     
  17. Fishball

    Fishball Well-Known Member

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    If the seat is fit, then I think let out is a better option.
    Most of my pants has been let out 1-1.5inch, since I take in few pounds after marriage. They all look ok.
     
  18. Garage/Surf Rock

    Garage/Surf Rock Well-Known Member

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    May 10, 2006
    Is there a way of having the waist on pants increased? I have a bunch of pants I bought up 'cause I like them a lot and the style had been discontinued. But the waist is a tad tight. I like the fit of the legs and seat so no need for altering there.
     
  19. millionaire75

    millionaire75 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
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    Jan 14, 2007
    Resurrecting this thread. So, two pairs of pants....which is the better option.

    1. Too big in waist, seat but thighs fit (have tailor take in)

    2. Fine in waist (bit snug), seat but thighs are very tight (have tailor let out if he can)

    Which do I go with.
     
  20. anon

    anon Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,325
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    Jan 28, 2009
    Location:
    Houston
    Resurrecting this thread. So, two pairs of pants....which is the better option.

    1. Too big in waist, seat but thighs fit (have tailor take in)

    2. Fine in waist (bit snug), seat but thighs are very tight (have tailor let out if he can)

    Which do I go with.

    1 sounds right to me. It seems a lot better to alter a waist than thighs
     
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