Monday, December 30, 2013

Skinny jeans!!!

I really have perfected my jeans! I bought lots of fabric to make more. I ordered some online from Some hot pink, melon, and light gray.  I never wear bright colors but I like them so much I am going wild. I found some nice black denim at a local fabric store today, so that means I have about 5 pairs of skinny jeans to make. Oops, I mean 6. I forgot about the Angela Wolf fabric that I just ordered. Maybe one pair will turn into some bootcut jeans, but I am pretty much stuck on skinny jeans, or toothpick jeans, as J Crew calls them.

The favorite pair is a cobalt blue, which is a blend of 3% spandex, 65% cotton and 32% polyester. This is from EmmaOneSocks. I found what I think is the same thing at That has not arrived in the mail yet. Those are all the wild colors mentioned above. I highly recommend the class from with Angela Wolf to make designer jeans. Great instructions, great instructor.

Today I received the present I bought myself, a grommet attacher. It wasn't cheap. This is to attach my rivets and jean buttons to the jeans. I have been pounding with a hammer, most are successful but none as easy as this thing works. Wow. Kinda pricey but really works well.

Unfortunately, my machine was taken in for service today and I won't have her back for at least a week. I have been very unhappy with the service where I got the machine so I took it elsewhere. No service plan there so I will have to pay out some big bucks but hope to get it running like it used to. 3 times at the other place is enough and I really feel they don't care about my million dollar purchase.

I would love to post some pictures of my jeans but it is so hard to take selfies!!! I live alone so I don't have a partner to take my picture! One of the other purchases that I plan to make is a tripod. Or maybe I should just buy a dress form, I have been looking for one of those too. Not enough space in my downtown loft though. Simplify Janice….

Monday, December 2, 2013

Burda 7863

Here is the second pair of jeans. The first pair is not what I dreamed of. They were huge and high waisted. No way to fix that waist line that I can figure out. So it was on to the next pair. I made the same size since the faux leather has no stretch. I guess that was a mistake because these are too small. I can't get it right. I shortened the crotch length by 3 inches. The waist has a big gap in the back so I need to learn how to adjust that. Lots of work and I probably won't get to wear them….but they are cute!!

Now there are a few options that I see myself doing. I signed up for the Craftsy class, Jean-ius. That is where you learn to copy a pair of store bought jeans and then have your perfect fitting jeans. I watched lesson 1-3. Looks like lots of work and I have to go buy silk organza and some art pencils. hmmm, maybe next weekend.

Option #2 is to hope that someone makes the perfect pattern for my body. Angela Wolf has a jeans pattern that I am almost going to click 'purchase'. They look to be low cut jeans, they are boot cut, which is easy to turn into skinny. I think they look ok. They call for a 7 inch zipper and that sounds high waisted to me. I also wonder why they call for 3 yards of 60" fabric when all the other jean patterns call for less than 2.

I was also hoping that would come out with a skinny jean pattern. She makes patterns for women with hips and small waists and that sounds like me. She has one pair of pants and I bet I could turn that into a pair of jeans…..that will be option number 3. I don't think she will come out with a pattern in the next few days though…..

Looks like option 2 is my choice….

Friday, November 29, 2013

The Mission: Turn Burda 7863 into J Crew Toothpick jeans

My first attempt at turning this pattern into a pair of skinny jeans is in the works. I bought the fabric at Really my favorite fabric store. Not cheap but well worth it. They have stretch denim in all the colors I would want. The first pair is a faded blue slub, which looks EXACTLY like the fabric in my J Crew jeans ($130). So those are going to be the pair for me to copy.

They say to choose the size in your measurement which is really hard to do. A 14 really??? In the stores, I wear about a 6, American women usually do not care for double digits. Oh well, I'm not the skinny girl I used to be. 

My thoughts on the sizing is that the 14 fits me like a regular pair of jeans, not what I want. I am resizing the pattern as I go for the next pair, which is going to be the color, coffee.  So far I have taken 2 inches out of the crotch length, it might need to be 3 inches. Otherwise, they just might look like 'mom jeans' and no one should want to wear mom jeans if you don't have to.

The length is at least 2 inches too long. The upper thigh is somewhat tight but needs to be tighter. I need to at least go down to a size 12, maybe a size 10. The entire leg needs to be taken in, as much as 1.5 inches at the ankle. 

The pattern has you make the pocket with denim fabric, but I never have owned a pair of jeans with denim fabric pockets so that had to go. I used muslim that I have a bolt of. I sewed the pockets on the inside like the ones I wear, stitched twice. First seam is about a 1/4 seam with wrong sides together, then turned
and with right sides together, another 1/4 seam to enclose the previous seam. viola.

I have made these jeans using my BabyLock Evolution about 90% of the time. I have used several stitches  used in jean construction. The Cover Stitch is used all over the place and also the 3-Thread Overlock- Narrow. I used heavy weight thread. Mettler calls it Extra Strong. I think Guterman calls it heavy weight or jeans thread. I used either of these throughout construction. except for the pockets. For the belt loops, I will use do a long strip of cover stitch- wide, and then cut them. Just like J Crew's. 

I'm ordering fabric for the 3rd pair of jeans, it could be called electric blue but emma calls it cobalt. by then I should have this pattern perfected to look like this. 

Now those are skinny jeans. Love em.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Not Your Mother's Jeans

My next sewing challenge will be to make a pair of jeans. I mean skinny jeans. There are no patterns for skinny jeans. The closest pattern I can find are called tapered and they are anything but skinny. I want these jeans like J Crew's Toothpick jeans. I will have to make my own pattern from my J Crew's. The place that I find the best denim with some stretch in them is EmmaOneSock. They will send you free samples of up to 5 different fabrics. The fabric is fabulous if you want really good stuff. It isn't a place to go if you want inexpensive fabric.

From what I can tell from the jeans patterns from Vogue and McCalls, they are the proverbial MOM JEANS. I do not wear mom jeans.  I bought a pattern from Burda 7863, you can see it here. They have not arrived in the mail. The description says 'slim jeans'. That has yet to be determined. I see a couple of sewers out there who have made these to look like skinny jeans. So that is my goal. A photo of this blogger's skinny jeans are  here and I think they look quite smashing.

I will start by shortening the crotch length by an inch. I hope not to get tired of these jeans before I get a sample made that fits.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

More bags!!

How cute are these??? (if I do say so myself…)

100% natural linen, Heather Ross lining. 2 of my favorite things. I also love that 6mm long triple stitch that I put near the zipper. 

My machine has big huge bobbins that I keep in a case that they come in. Unfortunately they end up in any of 10 drawers. Now they will belong in this bag. Always trying to organize, a never ending feat. Can you tell my favorite color is orange??  well, maybe green, and I like black too.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

What have I been doing for the last nearly 2 years?? I have no idea. Still sewing. Bags, and more bags. Here is one of the latest large cosmetic bags. I put vinyl on the inside. The plan was that I would take it to Florida with me but it didn't get done in time. Oh well. I have made so many of this style bag in different sizes you would think I would be an expert. I think I learn something each time to make it better next time. Vinyl can be quite a bear to sew with. 

The boyfriend thought he should get a bag. Lightbulb moment. He just made me decide what he's getting for Christmas. I'm going to fill it with crazy socks. I learned last year the man only does crazy gifts. I got magnetic measuring spoons plus a couple other non memorable type items. This year he gets socks, plus a hand made bag from me....

 It had to be 'manly'. So I bought faux black leather. I laminated the black and white striped fabric for the lining, cause I know his toothpaste will get all over. The man is a mess.

Had to embroider a little label on the inside with a little heart. Aren't I sweet?