Ginger Jeans Part II - The Real Deal

Following on from my earlier post about the Ginger Jeans toile - here are the finished final version!

I got the denim from Anglia Fashion Fabrics -  - its black and fairly stretchy but a lot heavier in weight than my toile, although I'm informed this is only a 'medium weight denim'.

Being the obedient follower of new information - I obeyed Heather's ebook instructions for the Ginger Jeans pattern and got some good jeans sewing supplies from Jaycotts including gold top stitch thread, denim needles and a pack of jeans button and rivets. (I nealy copped out of doing the rivets as I did not want to risk holes in my jeans right before they are off to assessment for my course but so glad I did them, makes a nice touch! ). Seriously that ebook is the nuts. Mini crushing on Heather just because of it.

Having suffered 'twisty leg' in my last pair, I got all rain man about it again, pressed and steamed the fabric then measured the grainline of the fabric to within an inch of its life. It took nearly 2 hours to trace and cut the pattern pieces as I was so paranoid about getting it wrong. (Denim ain't cheap - eeesh)

Legs all on grain, points tacked, balances notched - and I STILL manage to get some crazy stretch twistyness up the back. I'm thinking I just actually have 'twisty leg' the ailment not the fabric issue. Never mind, was pleased with the rest of it and they really were a labour of love too.

As for the pretty guts in this pair? ROBOTS! The natural jeans companion.

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Ginger Jeans - The Wearable Toile

This is a little bit blog deja vu - winter months spent obsessing about trouser fitting - I think I've been here before!

For my community college projects, one of them had to be to make a pair of trousers - that fit. Thank goodness I put in some of the labour last year! Having made my floral trousers last year I wanted to challenge myself and try out the Ginger Jeans by Closet Case Files.

I have never made a pair of jeans and wow are they different to regular trousers! I cannot recommend Heather's 'Sewing Your Own Jeans' e-book enough. This became my bible and money well spent. Pages and pages of photo illustrated instructions!

Based on the measurements I cut a size 12 - they fit perfectly at the crotch and hips (and almost matched exactly the crotch curve on my self-drafted pair from last year).

The hilarity of my waist-to-arse ratio became apparent when I had to take in the waist to a Size 2!! With a careful bit of pattern adjustment (nearly forgot the back yoke pieces but had a last minute realisation) managed to get them to fit nicely.

The regular rise version of the pattern has straight legs so  took those in a bit aswell to skinny them up a little.

The fabric is super soft stretch denim from - was lovely to sew and comfortable to wear. Construction was so much fun - who knew top stitching was so therapeutic?!

The main issue I had with this toile was some serious twisty leg. I mean really twisty. I took to Instagram to gather some help and the lovely community out there taught me the importance of a straight grainline!

Look at that crazy inseam - inseam where are you going?!

Issues encountered with the toile (my sewing not the pattern, the pattern is awesome): (these are all real technical terms btw ;)
  • Twisty leg - my own fault. I hadn't got the pattern quite on grain and had cut double layer - NOT as per the jeans instructions for cutting everything from a single layer. Totally makes a difference.
  • Baggy knee - I've got quite "muscly" thighs/calves so it was suggested that the fabric was tight at calf and pooled above it at knee. In the real version I have let the pattern out again at legs back to straight leg not skinny (will post on real ones next week). It still does it a bit but teach reckoned its because my legs are fuller at front than back so excess fabric occurs. What I did with toile (rightly or wrongly) was just take them in a bit at the knee. If anyone has other ideas about this please do say!
  • Pocket flashing - The pockets pulled a bit so you could see the lining poking through. I changed the pattern a bit to just expand the pocket facing and avoid flashing pocket.
  • Tiny fly - I found the fly extension a bit small so just extended that a bit to accommodate my zip and stitching. No fault of the pattern, just fancied a bit more room for sewing manoeuvre.
  • Wiggly waistband - I cannot sew a waistband!!!!! My own incompetence at this stage. I just can't put one on without it wrinkling/waving. Had to do it in little stages and steam the hell out of it :-(
Pocket Flashing
 The good bits about the toile are that:
  • I had no idea I was capable of even trying jeans so pretty pleased with these
  • Learnt all about measuring from selvage for a straight grainline
  • Learnt that actually shortening legs at the 'shorten here' line works - its there for a reason! (To be fair I learnt that on the real pair after these were 2 inches too long)
  • Managed to make pattern adjustments not previously encountered
  • Learnt the joy of 'pretty guts' - see picture below!
Pretty Guts
 And in the end I have a pretty wearable toile! After these have been assessed I'm going to chop them just below knee or mid calf for a nice pair of vintage looking summery Capri pants.

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Happy New Year! Being Crafty in 2016

Wishing everyone a Happy New Year!

I enjoyed reading 2015 reviews on other blogs but I didn't want to re-post everything on here. Instead a little comment on 2015 would be that looking back to posts last January, I definitely saw a change over the year. I was feeling in stalemate and not learning anything new - but having something to actually look back to, the photo evidence, just shows how progress can be made. My projects were quite simple and I got a lot of the basics wrong, or 'just ok'. I also made a lot of things just for the sake of it, things that perhaps I would not choose to wear or would not be my style. A lot of it ended in a charity bag. Towards the end of the year I definitely saw a shift to trying to make things with more effort and skill. Back in September I joined community college to do night classes in dress making, back to basics, so I think this is having a good influence. I even tried to organise my patterns!

So 2016 sewing resolutions?

  • Put in the effort - I had a tendency to be lazy and a bit sloppy, then get annoyed with the result. Any wonder?? I'd also pick something 'easy' even if it wasn't exactly what I wanted.  Trying to take time over something and do it properly will hopefully alleviate some of the disappointment of a slack project!
  • PRACTICE - I need to not be so harsh on myself if things don't turn out right first time, it's easy to get a little downhearted when you see someone out there who has only been sewing a year make the most beautifully perfect creations - but hey, some are naturals but us mere mortals have to work at it!! 
  • Record and document - Firstly, if I think of a good project I need to draw it! Then, after trying patterns and making adjustments I need to write the adjustments down! I have a brain like a sieve so I just forget everything if its not on paper.  The solution - a perfect little book for this: 110 Creations: a sewist's notebook and Gertie's Sketchbook. Hopefully a great place to start!

    As for 2016 crafting plans - let's just say the list is an ever changing entity about a mile long, and realistically it's not all going to get done. However with good intention I would like to try:

    • This little trio - especially the Emery Dress which I've seen soooo many fantastic variations of on Pinterest 

    • Another man's shirt - long sleeves for my lovely :-)
    • Anything with this!!! I've been waiting ages for this collection to be released - so excited - spring octopus-wear here we come! Cotton and Steel - Tokyo Train Ride
    • I'd love to try a Watson Bra - but that may be a bit out of my league - who knows??

    Closet Case Files and Llladybird
    •  Plus a few more 'crafty' bits that aren't entirely sewing related - just for fun. 'Project ClydeArt' is in progress ;-)

    Have you got any resolutions or good intentions for the year? Would love to hear about them! Find me on  InstagramFacebookTwitterPinterest and Bloglovin too :-) xx