Saundra Ros Altman's: Past Patterns

How to order #008: 1830s-1840s Small-Fall Trowsers.


#008 1830s-1840s Small-Fall Trowsers. $15.00 (US funds)

Order the pattern in one of the two waist sizes: Sizes 28"-42",and Sizes 44"- 52".

The 008 small-fall trowsers were copied from originals in the collections at the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency in Springfield, Illinois. While the trowsers were copied from the originals, the pattern was drafted from the 1837 trowsers draft in The Tailor's Masterpiece. The construction is true to the originals.

The fabric requirements are for a man who stands 5'6" tall. Add 2"-4" for every 1" of height above 5'6". In 45"- wide fabric, purchase: 2-3/4Yds. for sizes 28"-34"; 3 Yds. for sizes 36"-42"; 3-1/8 Yds. for sizes 44"-52".

FABRICS: The original trowsers were made of brown wool broadcloth. A second pair was made from a copy of the first in navy blue wool broadcloth. Substitute fabrics are: cotton sateen; light-weight cotton duck; linen; drill in white or blue, or woven into stripes, check, or plaid; and fine wool jean. Do not purchase worsted wool.

NOTIONS: The original lining, pocketing, and facing fabric is a white, medium-weight cotton. Of 45"-wide lining fabric, cut 7/8 Yd. Two-ply hand-sewing silk thread and 60/2 wet-spun linen thread to match fabric. Nine 5/8" five-holed, dyed or plain bone buttons.

TAILOR'S SUPPLIES: All notions can be purchased from: Wm. Booth, Draper, at 12119 Bigelow Ave., Hebron, IL 60034. Phone: (815) 648-9048. Website:

This is a pattern package rich with information. It is divided into seven sections:

  • Historical Notes by Bill Combs - Briefly summarizes the introduction of small-fall trowsers and where they were worn after they were no longer fashionable.
  • Fabric Glossary - A small glossary of fabrics mentioned in the small-fall trower notes.
  • Pattern Drafts 1800-1838 - Illustrates trowser drafts from 1800-1838 and the differences and similarities between tailor-made and ready-made garments.
  • Construction Notes - Explains how to measure and how to wear mid-19th-century trowsers.
  • Essentials of Tailoring Outlines the minimum tools needed by a journeyman tailor or a home tailoress, how to make them, and their uses.
  • Historical Stitches Illustrates the stitches used to construct the original trousers.
  • Making Up Describes and illustrates in detail how to make a pair of reproduction trowsers similar to the originals.

Matching Patterns: If wearing the trowsers for the first quarter of the nineteenth century, order shirt patterns from Kannik's Korner at www.http/ . If wearing the trowsers for the mid nineteenth-century, consider ordering Past Patterns' #006-Men's Drawers, #010 Square Cut Shirt, #011 Fitted Shirt, #018-Single-Breasted Vest, and #009-Double-Breasted Paletot.

Acknowlegements: Thanks to the Ross County Historical Society, Chillicoathe, Ohio, for the Tailor’s Instructor, #1942.235; the Ohio Historical Society, Columbus, for Rules and Direction for Cutting Men’s Clothes, by the Square Rule, #TT590.J7. Special thanks to Isabelle Lott of Pattern Works International for grading the pattern in all the sizes; Peggy Falk of Falk Designs for the cover and any freehand art; Elizabeth Bowling for editing; and to others too numerous to include.Final Testing: Final instructions and pattern tested and edited by Holly Turner of Holly’s Custom Sewing. Phone Ms. Turner at (573) 438-4596.

This pattern is copyrighted and is for personal, non-commercial use only. Dressmakers and other commercial users contact Past Patterns.

Phone us at (937) 223-3722 or use the Order Form to order by fax or mail.


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