The development of a method for determining the best-fit shape for the crotch seam of men's pants

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Virginia Tech


The fit of ready-to-wear clothing is an area of concern for the consumer and the apparel manufacturer. Pants are one of the most difficult artic1es of clothing to fit due to the crotch area. The manufacturer strives to provide the best fit possible, but measurement, and pattern making techniques currently available may not be sufficient to satisfy the fit needs of many of their customers.

The purpose of this research was to develop a method for determining the best-fit shape for the crotch seam of men's pants. A measurement method and instrument (flexicurve) for reproducing the crotch shape were developed including identification of the crotch point. Crotch shape reproductions and specific anthropometric measurements were taken from a sample of five subjects.

The crotch shapes for each subject (n=3) were aligned on an "x" and "y" coordinate grid using the crotch point and a second reference based on back waist height and a common "x" bar. The shapes were plotted into a load analyzer to establish a data base of "XU and "y" coordinates.

Descriptive statistics were used to compare anthropometric data and the standard deviations between shapes within subjects. Crotch shapes were diagrammed using scatter plots. A regression function was modeled to the subjects average crotch shapes to determine the best-fit shape.

The method and instrument for crotch shape reproduction seems to have potential, however, were further work needs to be done on the establishment of a second reference point, so that the shapes could be meaningfully analyzed. The best-fit shape differed from the pattern crotch curve, but meaningful analysis was hampered by lack of pre-established, scientifica11y based methods for incorporating ease and style features (such as darts and pleats) being incorporated into the shape of the crotch seam. From this study it has been learned that an instrument can be developed which can identify the crotch point and reproduce the crotch shape for male subjects. Future research needs to be conducted with a larger sample to resolve unanswered questions.