Well here, finally are my pictures of the P&S pants. A light and dark grey pair, a black and grey mini houndstooth, a navy and black pair, all from the same pattern.
I realize now that I have been at this a while, a few months at least since I started this and 40 years (!) if you count back to my first pair of awful pants. I am pretty happy with these, not perfect, but if you scroll down to the versions that got me here, much improved. I also feel that I learned enough about my body and this method that I could apply this to other pants patterns. A more casual pair in twill with narrower legs, maybe bootcut would be another one I would like to try, and also something more trendy. Katherine has made some good pattern suggestions and I think I will follow up on that, next Vogue pattern sale.
So what have I learned:
1. Let go of your assumptions about your body. I realize that my grandmother who was also tall, 5' 9" was very tall in her day, told me when I was a teenager that I had "a long pelvis" like she did. So since then I have dutifully added and added to my crotch seams just like I added to my skirt lengths and bodices, being 5'9" myself. One thing I have found out by measuring myself and comparing those measurement to the pattern that in fact I don't have anything at all like a long crotch length, and am shorter in the front crotch than even the standard draft. Glad I cleared that up. Wonder how much money I have wasted on wadders over my lifetime of sewing. Sometimes you live by your own family myths.
2. And speaking of money rather than spending a fortune, as I have, in search of the elusive "good pattern" it makes sense to just deal with a basic pattern and compare your own measurements to the flat pattern and learn where the differences are. The Simplicity pattern I used for this experiment was nothing fancy or really stylish but it was an uncomplicated place to start applying this method.
3. One step at a time. Pants fitting I have decided is a lot like learning to how the tension on your serger works. I have seen sewers who had tension issues and just gave each tension dial a little twist to see if that helped. It doesn't. Much better to make a fine tune to each dial at a time, because one adjustment affects another.
3. There may in fact be something to this buying a pattern two sizes smaller thing. These were fairly wide legged pants to start with but I added, mainly to the hips and waist and only slightly to the upper thigh to a size 12 pattern. If you look at the pictures and imagine if I worked from a size 16, and working from the pattern envelope measurements I would probably have cut out a multi-sized pattern somewhere between the 16 and 18 imagine how these same pants would look. I am looking forward to trying this method again on some really different pants to see how it goes.
4. Sometimes it pays to just focus. I haven't let myself work on anything but pants for at least two months now and I really have learned at lot. My previous approach would have been to make one terrible wadder, give up, then buy another pattern eight months later and repeat that same process. It feels great to finally have something that fits, I almost feel as if I have the basis for jumping into a SWAP.
5. I am pretty impressed with the old Pivot and Slide. I should have read this book when I first bought it 20 years ago.
Now time to settle down and plan my Christmas sewing.