Evening fillies! Spurred on by the Me-Made-March need for regular, every day clothes as well as Tanit-Isis’ recent denim do’s and don’ts post I decided to jump in to jeans-making. Of course, with my love of making everything difficult, I ended up with a pair of trousers that bears a suspicious resemblance to riding breeches… they also strike me as a tad bit on the martial side.
This all started with a pattern sale. I know everyone seems to love the Jalie 2908 jeans pattern, but, you know. I’d actually have to order that and wait for it. Last weekend I was flipping through the Vogue Pattern book at Joann’s and Vogue 1034 caught my eye. While there are some super-goofy details in the jeans, including giant double pockets, odd zipper pockets in the back and an optional ‘button trim’; they are a Sandra Betzina design, which was intriguing to me. I usually find her videos and books quite helpful, although I’m usually not a fan of the Sandra Betzina patterns. Also, the cut of the leg was appealing to me – there’s a slight bootcut, but not as flared as a lot of patterns look. I got the pattern, headed home and started plotting.
I picked up some inexpensive stretch denim from Joann’s and started the washing and drying process. I also made a quick muslin to fit. I used a woven fabric, even though I planned on using a stretch fashion fabric, so the muslin wasn’t super helpful. In fact, based on the muslin, I added 2 inches to the back crotch length by cutting horizontally across the back pattern piece and adding two wedges. In hindsight, I realize that was a bad idea – I don’t think the jeans were too short in that measurement, I think the lack of stretch made them hard to pull up! I skipped muslin photos – super tight striped woven pants are not a look that I should share indiscriminately with anyone…
[new jeans for today’s Me Made March!]
There was an element of introspection to this project. I am always drawn to trouser style jeans or possibly a (as-yet-undiscovered) well proportioned bootcut jean. In real life, though, I tend to wear my jeans either tucked in to tall boots or rolled up a bit and with flats. I don’t really like the look of wider legged jeans (trouser or bootcut) unless they’re worn with heels and I don’t usually wear that much of a heel in my day-to-day activities. In trying to stay with my me-made practicality, I picked up some stretch sateen from Joann’s to make a pair of practice pants. I was thinking of getting black to make some Audrey Hepburn-esque cropped pants, but there wasn’t enough black at the store. I went with beige. After tracing out the pattern, narrowing and shortening the legs, I realized I was really heading into the territory of the foxhunt…
I finished the bottom of the waistband with a piece of bias tape. Also, in this picture you can see the pocket construction – the pockets stretch across the whole front of the pant and attach to the fly – the pattern calls it a tummy control panel or something like that. I sort of liked the effect! I did all the construction at home, so no serging! For the most part the seams were either overcast or in a few places I did flat felled seams.
Speaking of pockets, there are some crazy double pockets on these pants! I knew I didn’t want the full-on pockets, but couldn’t’ really figure out which one I wanted to get rid of, so I just went ahead and made them both on the practice pants. They are surprisingly functional, but I would never need TWO pockets, so I’ll drop the lower ones from future projects.
The pattern said to topstitch the outseam, but I had a pair of my favorite Calvin Klein jeans on hand and had looked at Dan’s Levis – they were both topstitched on the inseam, but only topstitched on the outseam to right about where the pockets end. I did the same on my practice pants.
The practice pants are pretty comfy and I’m sure I’ll get a lot of wear out of them. There are a few fitting issues, though. I think they’re all around the super high waist. It is a VERY high waist! On other trouser patterns I’ve generally had to take a lot of the front crotch length. I left these fronts the way they were and the waistband ends well above my belly button. It’s not an unflattering look, but after wearing for a day, there was a clear foldy ripple where my finger’s pointing in this picture.
I also added way too much to the back crotch depth. The muslin pants were probably four inches lower than the practice pants and I only added 2 inches. I’ll have to take some of that back out – probably all of it. Hello working with stretch fabric! in the back there’s a ripple right below the yoke. I’m not 100% sure if shortening the crotch depth will fix it – anyone know the fix to the bottom of the yoke not fitting right??