Tag Archives: jeans

My newest pair of Ginger Jeans

7 Oct

If you read my post a few weeks ago about selecting the right denim for ginger jeans, you’ll know that I’ve been agonizing over the right amount of stretch and size for quite a while. In the end, the denim I chose has about 12% stretch  and I made a size 10. Now that they are all done and dusted I can see that with that amount of stretch I really should have made size 8. I find it a little frustrating that my first 3 pairs fit perfectly (by shear luck I realize now). But the lesson is learned – I think it the fabric has 10% or more stretch I should use size 8 and if less, size 10. Still, they are quite comfortable and not too shabby, better a bit big than too small as my last pair was.

This version has the skinny legs combined with the low waist – and with this extra stretchy fabric, they feel and look great (in pictures they look black, but they are actually a dark blue). As these are the fifth pair I’ve made, there’s not much to say about the construction or pattern, except that I love the design, the instructions and the end results (despite being slightly too big).

For the pockets and waistband facing I’ve used the scraps left over from one of my favourite summer dresses (Simplicity 2363 in a lovely cotton lawn I got at Raystitch years ago). Plus I used hot pink thread on all the insides, so should I ever decide to wear them inside out, my seams are ready!


I always struggle to get the tension right with top stitching. But this time I found the optimal stitch was 3.75 stitch length and tension set to 8 (normally its set on 5). Also I worked out that whenever I start a line of topstiching, it is best to hold the thread taunt before it catches, that way I can avoid it getting tangled at the start of any row of stitching.  The results are pretty damn good, even if I do say so myself.

I have two more pieces of denim from Ditto – one in dark charcoal for a high waisted, skinny leg Version B and one in a indigo for a low waist, straight leg Version A.  Slowly but surely I am replacing all RTW clothes (as they wear out of course). As both are very stretch I think I’ll be making size 8.


MMM17 Week 2

14 May

It’s been another lovely week – a few new makes and a few old favorites. I’m still loving the challenge!


Day 8: Happily pulled on some cozy tights to wear with my jean skirt (moss skirt pattern from grainline studios.

Day 9: I wore my new bonnie top from Blue Ginger Doll. I love this fabric from Dragonfly Fabrics.

Day 10: Woop woop there was sunshine! Spent the day in the garden in my clover trousers (which I later made them into shorts) from Colette Patterns and another kimono tee from  Maria Denmark Sewing. On Wednesday the garden won over sewing.

Day 10 BONUS: In addition to my me made outfit i wore all day, I’m  went out that evening in me made too! My newest bonnie top – this is my favorite neckline!

Day 11: I’ve made quite few of butterick B5354 but this one’s my favorite!

Day 12: Got caught in some serious downpours this afternoon. Up side however was that i took shelter in a grove of trees that matched my linden sweater perfectly!

Day 13: Went out last night for belated celebrations for my new job wearing my new ‘good’ dress: Laurel from Colette. Love any reason to get dressed up!

Day 14:  At Columbia road flower market in my ginger jeans and linden sweater (again) – went a little crazy.

Ginger jeans hack

5 Apr

At the moment the main thing I wear every day is ‘dog walking’ jeans. Ie the torn and dirty jeans I wear to take the dog for a walk every day. Not having any work has meant that I rarely gravitate to my dresses and nice blouses anymore. In fact if I’m going out and want to dress up, at the moment that means putting on my Ginger jeans (the only non dog jeans I have now). I love the Ginger jeans pattern and have made myself three pairs so far, one version with the low waist, straight legs and two with the high waist, skinny legs. I decided however it was time to hack it cause what I really want is a pair with low waist and skinny legs.

At the Knitting and Stitching show I got some really lovely dark very dark blue denim (50% cotton, 42% polyester & 3% elastane). To be honest I have no idea what kind of quality it is but I loved the color and feel of it.  I carefully merged the pattern lines of the two versions, which was much easier than I had expected. As before, I’ve made myself size 8 which works perfectly for me if I am using fabric with 3% stretch. They’re much tighter than comfort would dictate, but I’m hoping they’ll relax a bit? They are really well sewn so fingers crossed they loosen up otherwise I’ll be gutted.

Fuel for my sewing mojo

3 Mar

IMG_20170227_161904_703.jpgI’ve been a little low on sewing mojo lately. After finished my friend’s fancy dress back in mid January I got started on a few projects (actually they were Christmas presents) but totally lost any interest in sewing. And so they have been languishing in the corner, making me feel guilty every time I see them.

I decided that I needed a little fuel for my sewing mojo and lo and behold: the Spring Knitting and Stitching show! Hurrah – perfect timing. So this afternoon with a tight budget and a detailed list to keep me on track, I set off. And let me tell you, I was very well behaved.

I got myself three denims, from left to right:

  • denim with colored motes 83% cotton/17%polyester to make Gainline’s maritime shorts;
  • unknown denim with estimated 2% stretch for a pair of Closetcase’s Ginger jeans AND the Gainline Morris skirt;
  • dark blue denim 50% cotton, 42% polyester and 3% elastane for another pair of Ginger jeans;
  • as well as some 100% cotton swiss knot for an unspecified top;
  • plus I got myself the Cleo dungaree dress pattern.


Now  I hope to polish of those garments languishing in the shadows so I can get on to my newer and exciting projects.


January Jeans

7 Feb

One of my  New Year’s Resolutions was to make myself a pair of jeans. So when Handmade by Chris announced Jeans in January, it seemed like the perfect incentive to jump straight in. I’ve been eyeing up the Ginger Jeans from Closet Case for ages now and  decided I’d have a go at making them. I decided I’d follow the Sew Along that happened back in 2014 to learn some tips and tricks. Unfortunately calamity struck and I only got to start sewing these the last weekend of January. I nearly finished but then I was struck down by the dreaded lergy and only got to finish them this week.

Choosing my fabric and bits: I learned alot about denim in the first sew along post and dutifully set out to purchase the right type of fabric. Preferably some cheap denim (I’m learning my lesson – first attempts should not be made on expensive fabric). I initially ordered two pieces of denim from MyFabrics at the beginning of January. I liked how their website laid out the weight and fabric composition so it was easy to find exactly the right type of fabric. But after two weeks of waiting for it to arrive I found out that one wasn’t in stock and wouldn’t be replaced, and one wasn’t available in a continuous piece. With only 7 sewing days left in January (as I’m traveling quite a bit for work) I was more than a little frustrated by this news.

So I ended up buying some lovely dark blue denim from Ditto in Brighton (an old favorite of mine). It is 97% cotton and 3% elastane, but there’s no info on the weight. Although I’d initially planned on making version A, because the fabric feels so lightweight, I’ve gone for version B.

IMG_3235Pockets: The pockets came together well but I have to say they required a lot of concentration. It may have been a particularly dyslexic moment but I really struggled at first to conceptualise how they went together. It’s one of those things I guess that once you’ve got it, it seems so obvious. Anyway I used the scraps from making my McCall’s M4769 dress, so my jeans will look real pretty when inside out, gracing the floor.

Front fly: I’ve only ever done two front fly, one on my Maritime shorts (from Grainline) and another on my Simplicity 1969 trousers. Inserting a fly properly gives me an immense sense of satisfaction. Though I must say I followed Pt8 of the Ginger Sewalong closely (rather than following my instruction booklet) as  I found the numerous images very helpful!

Finishing my seams: I’d initially planned to us flat felled seams for the inner leg. But As I am loving the double overlock stitch setting on my new machine, I just sewed them normally, then with the doubleover lock before trimming away excess fabric and top stitching. I think they look gorgeous now – inside and out. The biggest challenge I’ve had with these jeans is the bloody top stitching. I really struggled to get the tension right for the thicker tread, and it continuously jammed. But I got there in the end.

Waistband and back pockets: I used the denim for both the waistband and facing, without applying interfacing. The pattern suggests that this makes a much softer waistband, which is very nice on high waists, and I must say I concur.IMG_3270 I dutifully had followed the suggestion from the sewalong to baste the back pockets and I’m really glad I did. Because now that my waistband was on I could see they were way too low and a touch wide. I moved them up about 3/4″ and in just a smidge. I’ve never before contemplated what pockets do for your butt but its amazing the effect well placed pockets can have.

Loops, button hole and hems: My belt loops were a cinch. Given the problems I’ve had with my top stitching I expected these to be a nightmare but who knew a hammer would come to my aid in sewing? The button hole however proved impossible with the top stitching thread. After about seven practice runs, I gave up and just did the button hole with normal black thread (as I had no matching normal weight gold thread).I needed to take the hems up about 2 1/2″ (instead of the recommended 1″), so I ended up first trimming them then hemming them.

 Button and rivets: These were I admit the detail I was most scared of, but they turned out to be quite straightforward to do with the help of an awl and hammer! It was a little tricky to get the awl through all the thickness on the back pockets though. But the effect is fantastic! .The only downside is that the interfacing at my button hole shows a touch or at least the fraying does. But at this stage I’m not feeling too picky.

A comment on size: I made size 8 which the pattern says is for a 28″ waist (which is my measurements) and a 37″ hip (my hips are 38″). The size 10 hips are 38 1/2″. I ended up choosing the smaller size as I thought with the stretch denim it would be the best fit over time as denim  always gives. And honestly at this point I think the jury is out. They are VERY tight (not camel toe tight mind you) and I think they look amazing. And really until I’ve spend the whole day in them it’s hard to judge it they are uncomfortably so.

Ta-da! I am so immensely pleased with myself! No more shall I fret at finding jeans that fit and in the style I love.


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