Wednesday, 4 February 2015

Peace, Love and Ginger Jeans

When it comes to technology I usually lag around ten years behind the rest of humanity. That's why I only discovered the blogosphere last year. It took being couch ridden for months with a new baby to get me there but once I found the sewing blog community I never looked back. I've read devoured  a lot of sewing blogs in a short space of time and even though I had seen jeans being blogged about I never imagined it possible that I could or would make my own jeans - the thought never even crossed my mind.


And then I saw Sallie's post about her Ginger Jeans by Closet Case Files which got me thinking that maybe I could make my own jeans. The stars aligned and the Ginger Jeans pattern came on sale on Kollabora, so of course I had to buy it! And here I am today blogging about the jeans that I friggin made!

I'm not the most patient person. I tend to launch headlong into projects, lose steam halfway through then take up a new project before the first one is finished. I also have way more creative ideas and plans than I have time for, so I can end up rushing things which often leads to botching things. Sewing has been good for me in that respect, because it can be pretty unforgiving. I've learned a lot about mindfulness, attention to detail and the importance of slowing down. So even though I was rather excited about making my Gingers I took some deep breaths, centred myself and consciously made a commitment to take my time and make my Ginger Jeans sewing experience a meditative process. 

Generally I'm a low waisted to super low waisted jeans girl but I decided to get out of my comfort zone, try something new and make View B - high-waisted skinny. Stretch denim was in limited supply at The Fabric Store, but I found some black stuff which looked pretty sturdy and decided on red topstitching thread.

I made a mustlin in size 6 which was pretty good but a little on the big size. I decided to stay with a size 6 though because the denim that I chose was pretty low on the lycra. I duly cut out all my pieces which laid in wait for my return from a one month holiday to Bali.

What I didn't anticipate was that I would lose a considerable amount of weight whilst on holiday - probably because I wasn't loafing around the house drinking chai and eating brownie and whatever else was in the pantry. So when it came to sewalong session 10 (sewing the side seams) much of the day was spent in my undies at the sewing machine taking in the legs and crotch here and here and there between examining the fit in the mirror. I like my skinny jeans skinny and I wanted to get them just right so yeah, I was taking in all over the place. My denim didn't have a lot of stretch so I couldn't make them super tight. I find it's quite handy to be able to bend at the knees and sit down in every day life so that's why theres a few wrinkles left around the knees and seat . Next time I'll go down a size provided I don't put on any weight, but I'll probably stay with the size 6 waist because it fits perfectly. I also raised the back pockets quiiiiite a lot.



I wish I could say I was left handed and that is why I placed the coin pocket on the left hand side, but the truth is, despite my intention to make my jeans sewing process a zen experience I accidently made the coin pocket left handed, realized too late and couldn't be bothered changing it, so on the left it stays. Let's see if anyone notices.


I followed the sewalong schedule which helped in two respects. 1) really detailed instructions with loads of quality photos makes the process so much easier and 2) it breaks down the project into bite size, accomplishable pieces. I limited myself to one session a day which was a more balanced approach to sewing than I'm used to and made way for other activities during the rest of the day.







































This top is a Cynthia Rowley pattern which I blogged about here. I am super stoked with my Gingers. It was waaaaay easier than I thought to make jeans, thanks in part to the great sewalong. Yay sewalongs!

After examining the photos I can see a few things to be improved upon for next time eg. putting the button in the right place so my zip doesn't peek out - woopsy. I think going down a size will fix a lot of the problems though and I'm not going to dwell on them - I just want to enjoy my jeans!

It seems as though a lot of sewists including me are making a concerted effort to add more me-made basics to their wardrobes. Jeans are the penultimate wardrobe staple, so it makes sense to have a crack at making your own. I've got a few projects brewing at the moment but more Gingers are definitely on the list - I've already bought the fabric for my next pair which are going to be View A.












9 comments:

  1. They're fab. Great approach to slow sewing. I tend to binge sew too....

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    1. Ha binge sewing! A very apt description indeed!

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  2. Wow! These look great!! Congratulations! I love your red topstitching thread with that black denim. And I really like your 'bite size' sewing approach with this project. I've found that is a great way to stay sane and also be productive as well. Also, that top is super cute - the fabric is gorgeous.

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    1. Hey thanks Sallie! If it weren't for you I wouldn't have made these so double thanks! I think I might have a jeans sewing addiction now though. So many projects so little time....

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  3. Well done! they look just fabulous on you! I like the colour combination you chose, red on black looks really cool. Now you have your own custom fit jeans pattern, you'll never look back!

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  4. These look great! I love the worn black denim with the red thread- fantastic!

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    1. Thank-you! Can't wait to make my next pair :)

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  5. I've now made two pairs of the low rise Ginger jeans and am planning a high rise pair so it was nice to read your post. I love that red top stitching - inspired!

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    1. Goody, can't wait to see them! I've got fabric for two more pairs hehe. I'm going to try the low-rise ones next.

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