Tag Archives: jeans

Relaxed fit jeans

Here we go with part 2 of March sewing. I told you I’ve been busy, hehe. (And there will also be part 3 once I finish that post.) After wearing the un-bootcut stretchy jeans for a few days, I decided to try making a pair of relaxed-fit jeans. I have that awesome Calvin Klein jeans pattern from, what, the 90’s? But those have a rise that looks mighty close to the armpits. And I like mine medium, with a curved waistband. Enter my good old TNT from Burda magazine back when it was called Burda World of Fashion (or BWOF, hehe). Remember that? Anyway, the pattern is #106 from BWOF 08/98. Mine no longer looks anything like the original wide-legged pleated-front trousers. I took out the pleats many years ago. This time, I also narrowed the leg from the knee down and shortened them to ankle length in an attempt to eliminate some of the tripping hazard. (You wouldn’t believe the stuff I trip on. Or maybe you would.)

Jeans - frontJeans - side

The fabric is a nice heavier weight 100% cotton denim from G Street Fabrics in Rockville. It’s like denim used to be before manufacturers started adding lycra and polyester. I’d bought the last two yards on the bolt and after wearing the jeans, I was hoping to buy a whole bolt of this fabric but no luck. When we went back to G Street, all their black denim was the stretchy stuff. Oh well. I’ll just cherish this pair.

Jeans - back

See the embroidery? I had fun with the back pockets. I used a design that came with the Bernina embroidery software. While looking for just the right design to put on these jeans (inspired by the hibiscus flower decals on my machine), I also took a few hours’ detour into organizing all the designs into folders to make future searches easier. Yay! I covered the back of the embroidery with a layer of stabilizer before sewing on the pockets, to ensure I wouldn’t snag the threads with my fingernails. That was an issue the first time I embroidered back pockets on jeans and a good learning lesson to remember.

Jeans - back closeup

I found two of my old labels and sewed one in. There should be an almost full box of them somewhere still but I think they disappeared in one of our moves. I haven’t seen the box in years. Isn’t the label neat?

Jeans - front closeup

And that’s all I have about these jeans right now. Stay tuned for the next post about the top I’m wearing in the pictures above.

See you soon!

Black jeans but not bootcut

My wardrobe has been in dire need of black jeans for a while. This month, I finally hopped to it and made not just one pair, but two. For the first pair I used Angela Wolf’s Angel Bootcut pattern with the leg narrowed to eliminate the bootcut. I’d used this pattern before for my blinged out teal jeans so the fitting issues were already worked out. Well,  mostly. I scooped out the crotch a tiny bit on this pair but I’m not sure it made any difference. Hard to tell in that black fabric.

Black jeans - closeup

The fabric is a slightly stretchy flocked cotton twill from JoAnn’s that I picked up a little over a year ago. At one point when I finished the jeans, I wondered if they’d be one-day pants as the fabric didn’t seem to have the best recovery, but that turned out to be an unfounded worry. They’re comfortable to wear, for a narrow pant. The leg width is new to me and I’m not sure it’s my most flattering.

Black jeans - frontBlack jeans - side

I omitted the pockets on this pair because it was meant to be a test pair. A wearable prototype, if you will. I finished them one evening and promptly wore them the next day for an all-day house-hunting trip with my sister. They held up just fine. I didn’t miss the pockets. Still not sure about the leg. I like more room all over. Like those relaxed fit jeans of old. I made those next, so stay tuned and I’ll show you. But before I go, let me show you my machine’s new look:

sewing machine with flower decals - front view

Isn’t it fabulous? I love it. It makes me happy every time I see it. And I take off the cover every morning to look before going to work, too. It’s such a cheerful sight.

Yardage sewn in this project: 1.5yds

Teal jeans with embroidery and bling

I’ve been waiting to post about these jeans, hoping to get better pictures. Alas, between the rain and cold weather, I haven’t been able to get outside to take pictures so we’ll have to do with these indoor ones.

Teal jeans 1

Two years ago, I made a pair of jeans that was meant to serve as a wearable prototype. I had wanted to make a few more pairs but then life happened, and the planned jeans did not materialize. Until now. A few weeks ago, I finally picked up the pattern, Angela Wolf’s Angel Bootcut (AW 4200). I used the altered version from the prototype because it fit well enough, and added two refinements – one for fit, the other for style:

  • a 1/2″ flat seat adjustment, using Ann Rowley’s instructions, to eliminate at least some of the wrinkling on the back of the legs;
  • an adjustment to the width at the hem, tapering to the knee, to make the hem circumference 19″ so they can be worn with heels.

Teal jeans 2

The fabric is a stretchy denim from Emmaonesock. It’s 65% cotton, 32% polyester, and 3% spandex. It feels very cottony and comfortable, and doesn’t seat out. At least not noticeably.

Teal jeans - back closeup

I’ve been wanting to use this bubbly embroidery design set ever since I bought it last year. I thought the back pockets of these jeans were the perfect canvas for it. I combined three smaller designs in the software, and then played with them a bit so that each pocket is a little different. I had fun getting back into machine embroidery. Note for future: remember that 24 minutes of actual embroidery stitching time will easily mean several hours of work total.

The crystals took longer to put on than I had anticipated but it was easy work and fun to watch the designs come to life. This is the first time I’ve worn bling on my butt and I wasn’t entirely sure about it at first, but once I put them on, I loved them immediately.

Teal jeans - front closeup

I considered contrast stitching but it wasn’t right for this project. Instead, I topstitched tone-on-tone. The stitching is visible, but not in-your-face. The pockets, fly shield, and inside waistband are cut from a coordinating quilting cotton.

Teal jeans - zipper DIY

I didn’t have a coordinating zipper. I had white (too light) and navy (too dark). So I improvised with Sharpies, hehe. Blue and green make a decent teal together, don’t they? On one side, I only needed to color the 1/8″ or so that shows next to the teeth, on the reverse I colored the whole width of the tape because it can be seen when the fly is open. Not that it’s a common sight, ha! but I wanted to make it as close to perfection as I could.

I needed a refresher on sewing jeans so I used Angela Wolf’s jeans class on Craftsy. I’d watch a lesson, then sew that part. Then I’d watch another lesson and follow up with a sewing session. It was nice because the process is divided into manageable chunks, each of which is a visible progress towards the finish. Very satisfying.

I’ve been wearing these jeans quite a bit and love them. The fit is just right, the fabric comfortable, and now I want to clone them in other colors.

And that’s all I have about these jeans for now. If you have questions or compliments, please write them in the comments.

See you soon!

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