Sewing Mishaps and Discoveries

My sewing experiences as I learn to sew.

The Jeans Contest Voting

2013 Jeans ContestIt’s time to vote for the best pair of jeans in The Jeans Contest. I hope you will vote for one of my entries here. Mine are the ones posted by aunrea, plus they are the only kids jeans made. To jog your memory here are the pictures of the jeans I made for my kids.



Jeans Completed!

So I finally finished my daughter’s jeans! The pattern wasn’t bad at all, except being unclear on how to sew the fly, and they look super cute. I just had trouble with my machine. After I broke the size 16 needle that came with the machine I tried to install a universal size 16 needles. It wouldn’t fit! So I sewed with a size 14 but I had a lot of trouble with the 14. I was able to get it done but it’s not as nice as I hoped it would be.

I love how they look on my daughter. They are a little long. I made a them bigger so she could grow into them and added an adjustable waist.These should fit her for awhile.

To add an adjustable waist I stitched a button hole in the waist band near the notches on the inside section of the waistband. I made sure it would not go into the seam allowance. After sewing the waistband on I added buttons and fed button hole elastic a little bigger than my daughter’s waist through the waistband and buttoned it to both sides.

Jalie 2908 Sewing Fly

So I have been working on my daughter’s jeans. It was easy sewing with clear directions until I got to the fly. I sewed it in following the directions as I interpreted them but it didn’t turn out right. I ripped out the seams and tried again, still not right. So I ripped out the seams and decided that was enough for one day.

The next day I did a search and found this great video: An Easy, Flat Fly-Front Zipper, which was exactly what I needed. It showed me exactly how to sew this kind of zipper insertion.

I got the zipper in but then I needed to top-stitch the curved fly line in the front but I just couldn’t get my machine to co-operate and I ended up seam ripping so much the fabric was weakened. I then added interfacing to strengthen the fabric along the seam line. I top-stitched again and still had trouble but the stitching didn’t look too bad so I kept it. I didn’t attempt doing double top-stitching lines.

I was so frustrated when I finally finished the fly that when I sewed the inseam and side seam I forgot to zigzag the seam allowance! I am going to try going int and doing it now at least out the outseam where it’s not top-stitched down, this denim keeps fraying.

Check out the pics of my progress so far.

Jeans in Progress – First Pair Complete

So last night I completed my son’s jeans. They didn’t exactly turn out liked I plan. There was some difficulty with the pattern. Burda 9525 was not designed to work like standard jeans.

I like that this pattern has an adjustable waist, but now that I have made it I don’t think I like how they did the adjustable waist. The construction was a little backwards if you want to sew these like jeans. I wanted to do top-stitching on the inseam like rtw but since I followed the instructions without thinking it through I could not. You sew the outseam first then the inseam which make it impossible to do top-stitching. I also installed the zipper before realizing I wanted to top-stitch the crotch seam but couldn’t do so because then the zipper was in the way.

I made a few alterations to the pattern. For one I did not add the tabs. I had planned on adding the cargo pockets from the other view but when I went to put them on they were so small it was comical. So no cargo pockets. I was going to use the flag buttons on the pocket flaps but since I didn’t add those pockets and my son insisted I still use them, so I used them on the belt loops as an embellishment. Also for the front pockets I created a new pattern piece, a yoke facing, since they had the pocket bags made of the same fabric as the pants. I didn’t want to have denim pocket bags so I created the facing and sewed it to the pocket yoke. This turned out really well.

I also changed to patch pockets on the back as I mention here. I had a problem with the blue A not showing up on one of the pockets, I fixed this by buying shiny blue embroidery thread and sewing over the A with it. Not it shows up more which you can see in the photos.

Online Sewing ClassThe directions were hard to follow especially for the fly area and if it wasn’t for Kenneth King’s Jean-ius class I don’t think I could have gotten these jeans completed. I re-watched the part of the videos so often trying to figure out how to get it to work. The pattern was constructed differently then standard jeans but I figured it out. The section in Jean-ius on how to shorten a zipper was very helpful since I couldn’t find the correct size zipper at Joann’s.

I had planned on making my own buttonhole elastic but that didn’t work out. So last minute I was looking for buttonhole elastic. Joann’s doesn’t carry it in store but has it online, but you have to buy 30 yards. had it by the yard but on back order. I searched other online stores but couldn’t find any amount less than 30 yards until I checked the Hobby Lobby. They have it in white and navy! But the navy is on back order, so I drove to my local store (I always forget that a new store opened locally a year ago) and found the white buttonhole elastic, so I just bought that. I might see if I can find the navy at some point and replace it in my son’s jeans.

So here are some photos of the construction and the finished jeans.

I plan on taking a break from jeans for a bit before working on my daughters. I am working on a dress (McCall’s 6749) and some boxers for me first, for the The Fabric Stash Contest.

Jeans in Progress – Pockets and Patches

So I have cut out all the pieces I needed for my kids jeans. Next I started by placing the patches I bought and embroidering the back pockets.

I let my kids determine where they wanted the patches with some suggestions from me. I then ironed them on and then stitched them on so they stay on secure.

To embroidered the pockets I drew out the design on tracing paper and then pinned the tracing paper to the pockets. I just stitched over the tracing paper and then teared it away. Now the tearing wasn’t as easy as I thought it would, I would suggest tissue paper or other very easy to tear paper. Now I just need to sew the pockets on.

Note: I got a new phone that takes bad pictures with the flash, everything is washed out. The pockets are the same dark blue as the pants.

The Jeans Contest

2013 Jeans Contest is holding a Jeans Contest from June 1st to June 30th. I am entering it. I ad been planning on making my son a pair of jeans and had bought the fabric last year! For some reason I bought 2.5 yards. I only need 1.25 yards so I am also going to make my daughter a pair.

For my son I am using Burda 9525, which has an adjustable waist. Instead of adding the tabs to roll up the bottoms I am going to add the cargo pockets from the shorts to the pants. I also bought some patches to add to his jeans. He is really into learning all about the United States so I thought the flag patches would be appropriate for him and I was right. He loved them! He wanted me to complete them before his Memorial Day assembly at school which was last Friday (I bought them last Wednesday).

For my daughter I am using Jalie 2908, which were the only pattern I could find for jeans for a young girl. I also bought some patches for her jeans. She picked out stars, so we are going more for a rock look. I bought pink thread to top-stitch with. They didn’t have pink top-stitch thread at Joann so I bought 2 spools to do 2 threads in the needle instead, which I learned to do from Kenneth King in his Jean-ius class at Craftsy. I also bought a pink zipper, which you won’t see on the outside but it’s a hidden surprise. I plan on making her’s adjustable waist too. So I will be making my son’s jeans first to see how it’s done and then do my daughter’s jeans. It shouldn’t be too hard.

I haven’t made jeans or any kind of proper pants before, so this should be a learning experience. I think Kenneth King’s Jean-ius class will be a big help.

Online Sewing Class