Added Jul 19, 2008
I had a pair of jeans that were miracle-workers, in that they made me, a five-foot-two-inch stumpy-legged descendant of leprechauns, look sort of petite-ish and slim instead of like a Hobbit.
It was a sad day when they died. Even sadder was going to the shop I’d bought them at, and they’d changed their cut and it was all wrong, total Corgi-ville.
Well, I cut the dead jeans up and made a pattern of the pieces, and cut them out of some 4% lycra denim I bought for $2 a metre. They were surprisingly quick to sew up and not difficult, even flat-felling the seams wasn’t too much trouble- Akwa’s how to is a really great step-by step explanation. It was a little hard going over the seams that had four layers, but my machine has a low-gear and for the really hard bits, I gave the handwheel a bit of help. Probably if I had done something sensible like, used a proper denim needle, it might have been easier.
I’m quite pleased with how they turned out, but my next pair will have some improvements. Because of the high lycra content, the fabric gives a fair bit so the jeans have become a little roomier than I wanted them, particularly around the waistband. I’ll cut the next pair a little smaller to compensate. I also should have made the legs longer, they could probably do with an extra inch or two, as they’re a bit stubbifying.
You should definitely give making your own jeans a go, and I was thinking it’s not such a bad project for an advanced beginner. The reason they’re good is even if you make mistakes and have to rip out seams and stuff, and if you overpress, it doesn’t ruin them, it actually makes them look better- jeans are supposed to be a bit roughed-up.
Denim with 4% lycra.
I used Gutermann upholstery thread for the topstitching.
I got 6 jeans buttons for $2 in a packet- the brand was Birch.
Simon for taking the photos.
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