I'm currently researching before I start a draft for some 1940s style trousers (the iconic wide leg with turnup). Because I enjoy a challenge and also for a modicum of historical accuracy, the draft instructions I'm using are from "The Modern Tailor Outfitter and Clothier - Vol. I" by A. S. Bridgland, which appears to date from the late forties. The intended results look similar to the example used in the trousers section of the Master Designer sticky in this forum.
However, having read Schneidergott's thread about the relationship between knee and crotch width, I find myself wondering. Exactly how wide is wide in 40s fashion terms, and is cutting a straight style of leg purely a matter of picking a number for the hem width and going from there? Or is the ideal hem width relative to body meaurements? David Page Coffin's book on trousers examines a lovely 1932 pair; sadly he doesn't give a measurement of the hem but based on counting the pattern repeats in the fabric(!) I make them about 18", which is a figure I've also heard quoted on websites selling reproduction 40s styles. Then I looked at a couple of pairs of modern dress trousers I own, and found that although they're definitely not cut like what I'm interested in they're still around 18" at the hem. Now I'm rather broad in the beam at the moment, so that again suggests that hem width is relative to the body rather than an arbitrary number. I'm getting steadily more confused - can anyone enlighten me?