When I made my Ginger jeans earlier this year, I felt that I head reached a major milestone when it came to making my own clothes. I’ve worn those jeans almost to death and it was so satisfying to be able to make something so complicated and essential to my wardrobe.
To challenge myself even further I decided to rip apart a an old pair of H&M jeans that I thought fit really well and turn them into a sewing pattern. Well, the bits of jeans ended up lying in a pile in my sewing room for a few months, before I plucked up the courage to do something with it. I was just dreading the time consuming process of creating the pattern and what I figured would be a crap result. Here’s how it went:
Like I said, the first step was to take the jeans apart – which is looooooong and boring. Turned out RTW jeans are held together by some pretty badass stitching. The second step was to figure out the different seam allowances, which was tricky thanks to all the flat felled seams. Thanks to everyone who advised me and got me to even out the seam allowances. I ended up applying a 1/2″ seam allowance all over. I chose 1/2″ for the simple reason that it meant I had to make the least changes. As you can see here, I was pretty methodical when mapping out the seam allowances…
FYI I would never have been able to sew up the final thing without Heather-Lou’s brilliant sew-along for the Ginger jeans – it’s so insanely detailed. And having made a pair of jeans from scratch before made it a lot less daunting.
When it came to sewing the legs I first basted them together to make sure the fit was good. I only ended up making a tiny adjustment to the yoke and the top of the side seams. After I simply stitched it all together and finished all the inside seams with my new SERGER. I clearly need a bit of training, but oh my god how wonderfully fast it was. And neat. Finally, I had bought a button and rivets kit from Thread Theory ages ago, so I had that ready to go.
And the result? Pretty darn good if I can say so myself! The fit is pretty much exactly the same as the originals. I guess this shouldn’t really come as a surprise, but it did since I was sure I was going to F something up. Sorry about all the ass shots and the dust! I made these out of a super soft stretchy and brushed twill that attracts all dust in sight. It’s from Stof og Stil and has 3% elastan content. I thought they would be too tight, but the fabric stretches very nicely. I found it hard to find nice looking quality stretch denim, so twill was a good compromise.
I am so chuffed to have ended up with a custom jeans pattern that I can use again. I’m going to make some tiny changes to the pattern, but all in all it’s pretty spot on. I you have an old pair of favourite jeans that are on their way out (and if you have the patience), I can really recommend doing this.
Have you tried doing something similar with RTW clothing? And have you tried a different technique?
- Pattern – nada!
- Fabric – £25
- Notions (incl. button and rivets from Thread Theory) – £6