Hello! I hope you are ready for an onslaught of Ginger Jeans photos! This is the first pair- I made view A which is the low-rise stovepipe leg.***my shirt is a slimmed down version of Deer and Doe’s free Plantain t-shirt…love that pattern!!
I have found the best way to muslin or fit jeans is to cut them out of the denim you plan to use, and then baste the front, back, and yoke pieces together to check the fit. Because every denim is a little different in weight and stretch I would do this every time I switch to a different denim.
After basting these together the first time, I realized I needed to make some changes to the fit. I added 1″ to the rise, both front and back. There was some excess fabric at the inner thighs and I felt like the crotch curve wasn’t working for me either with a bunch of whiskers in that area. Instead of fussing around with it forever I decided to dissect my favorite pair of RTW jeans (which were pretty much falling apart anyway) and use the pieces as a guide for the changes. You can see in the photo below what these pieces looked like compared to the pattern. I was skeptical, but it worked great! I basted the new pieces together and was super happy with the fit, so off I went… I was really pleased with this pattern- Heather did a great job with the design and instructions, and there is a fully illustrated sew along on her blog as well…lots of hand holding! If you have been thinking of sewing jeans I highly recommend this pattern as a first go. I used two different colors of topstitching thread- one beige and one gold. It was a bit of a pain switching out the colors but worth it as I like the effect very much.
I ended up with a little too much fabric in the area above the bum, which you can’t really see here but after I have been wearing them for a while it kind of bunches up a bit in that area. I cut the waistband straight instead of using the curved waistband piece from the pattern…all of my RTW jeans are made this way and I find it fits well with my body.
I waited a couple of months to make the second pair- I find it takes a while of wearing to really determine if the fit is working with a pair of jeans. I wanted to make another pair in this cheaper denim to make sure I had the fit nailed down before I moved on to the Cone Mills denim that I bought back when Heather had it for sale in her shop. The only further adjustment I made on these was to take about 3/4″ off the back rise only, half of that from the back pieces and the other half from the top of the yoke, tapering to nothing at the side seams.It’s interesting to see how these fit differently because they are brand new- it goes to show that with wearing denim will soften and mold to your body over time. Plus, even though I pre-washed and dried the denim there is still a bit more shrinkage with further washing.
I used different topstitching thread and rivets for these- everything is a copper color and I really love how it looks! One note about installing rivets- you will almost certainly have to trim down your posts before you hammer them together…I used some wire cutters and trimmed them pretty much flush with the denim after they were poked through the holes.Regarding pocket placement- if you use contrast topstitching thread and then place your pockets equal distance from the center seam, they won’t look right visually. I noticed on my RTW jeans the pockets are placed based on the topstitching, not the seam. That is what I did on my first pair…with these I did one row of the copper thread closest to the seam, and the other row of topstitching in navy. I then placed the pockets based on the row of copper topstitching.
I also got all fancy-pants and made a leather label for the waistband. I bought a bag of veg-tanned leather scraps and a leather stamping kit from my local Tandy leather store….I debated what to stamp on it but settled on something simple.
I don’t know about you guys, but I have had absolutely no luck with making buttonholes using topstitching thread on my machine. Instead of fighting with it I decided to hand stitch the buttonhole, and I really couldn’t be more pleased with how it turned out. I learned how to do it when I made my Gerard coat, using this tutorial which is so helpful with lots of pictures and even videos! I posted this pic on Instagram and I am pretty sure it received the most likes and comments I have ever had on there, ha! I think it is so awesome that we have a community that can get super excited about a buttonhole 🙂
I really love sewing jeans! I am surprised how much I like it, actually…it’s definitely a different kind of sewing from using more delicate fabrics. But it is really satisfying to make something that I wear soooo much, and I know will last a really long time. I am considering this my jeans sloper, and am working on a few other variations based on it. I have plans for skinny jeans, boyfriend jeans, flares, and overalls 🙂
Closet Case Files Ginger Jeans, View A
My measurements: waist 27″, hip 36″