Grading down pluse size patterns – Useful Advice?

It happened to me again: While at the fabric market recently, a fabric spoke to me! A lightweight light blue chambray printed with little white stars stole my ear and told me it wanted to be made into some slouchy beach vibe summer pants.
Well, who am I to disobey fabric orders?  So I have been looking through my Burda stash, and can you believe, the only pattern that the fabric squealed at in delight is a plus size pattern from the latest edition.

It’s Burdastyle 6/2014 #136

This is a plus size pattern starting at size 44. I normally need a size 42 for trousers, so I thought that grading down one size shouldn’t be a problem – in fact if I take 1/2 cm off each side seam and inseam I should be there.

But is my thinking right? Is a plus size pattern simply  “standard” pattern but a little larger? Or are the proportions within a plus size pattern different to standard patterns? Is there anything I need to take into account in particular?

Have you ever down sized a plus sized pattern and would you like to leave any useful advice or word of caution?

As always: Thanks you so much for your comments!


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6 thoughts on “Grading down pluse size patterns – Useful Advice?

  1. Marianne K May 14, 2014 at 9:16 pm Reply

    I never noticed any difference between a ‘regular’ 44 and a ‘plus size’ 44 in Burda patterns. Which makes sense, because it’s a 44 according to the measurements in the size charts, no matter what other sizes the pattern comes in. You’ve got some bossy fabric, telling you what it wants to be!

    • Chris May 14, 2014 at 10:19 pm Reply

      Thanks Marianne! Yep, it’s tough in my sewing room, that fabric is becoming more and more impatient. It doesn’t even want me to finish my WIPs, can you imagine 😉

  2. jennyrecorder May 15, 2014 at 9:36 am Reply

    Hi Chris, I have nominated you for a Liebster Award. You don’t have to accept, but the details are on my blog, I hope you have a look and enjoy the process 🙂

    • Chris May 15, 2014 at 10:11 am Reply

      aaah, thanky you so much Jenny! That is really lovely. I will get into all the details as soon as I can!

  3. Tia Dia May 16, 2014 at 3:18 pm Reply

    Chris, I’ve often graded down patterns for my girls by simply making smaller seam allowances. I have noticed a significant difference in crotch curves in plus vs. regular, so I would measure twice to be sure. Otherwise, baste, try it on and then stitch! It may take a little extra time, but it is doable and the finished result will be good.

    • Chris May 19, 2014 at 9:34 pm Reply

      Thanks for the tip re crotch curves. They are my nemesis, so it’s good to be aware of the enemy 😉

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