Friday, 12 July 2019

Turquoise Ginger Jeans: Lounge Camouflage

It wasn't until I came to resize these images, that I realised just how similar my new jeans are to the colour of our lounge wall! However, this is the only decent spot in our flat for taking photos, plus if you'd seen how many toys I had to clear out of the way to get these pics, you'd understand why I'm not going to re-shoot them. 


Maybes you remember my first crack at the Closet Case Patterns Ginger Skinny Jeans pattern? Well those have been worn sooooo often, that I knew another pair would be in the pipeline before long. What I have found with my first pair though, is that the low-rise option (view A) really is low. I wouldn't feel decent wearing them without a vest (AKA camisole/singlet) tucked in to them, especially if I planned to sit or bend down. That's fine for the three quarters of the year during which I wear vests, however I wanted my second pair to have year-round wearability. My feeling was that the high-rise option (view B) of the original Ginger jeans pattern would have been too high for me, and I considered buying the mid-rise version until my friend Paula told me that Closet Case had generously published a blog post with a tutorial for drafting your own mid-rise version. Let's do this!

Ginger Skinny Jeans pattern // Technical flats // Closet Case Patterns
(image source: Closet Case Patterns)

To draft a mid-rise pair, it is suggested that you start with the original high-rise option (view B), as the proportions of the pockets and such are more suitable. I chose to make the rise exactly in between the views A and B. I took some additional body measurements to find out what I measured around the waistband of my view A pair, and what I measured around where I intended my new waistband line would be. That different of measurements was very useful when following the steps in the post. I should point out that Closet Case's tutorial doesn't include shortening the fly piece, which does need to be done. 

I'm not the first to say that each time you make the Ginger jeans, or any pattern that uses a fabric with some stretch content, it's important to have a mid-way fitting sesh. Even if the fit on your last pair was perfect, each stretch denim will have slightly different properties so can't assume your next pair will also be spot on. I was relieved that, after all that pattern tweaking and the different denim, the fit of my second pair before I attached the waistband was great. After I tacked the waistband on, I tried them on again, but found them too tight at the waist, so I unpicked and reapplied the waistband,  easing in some extra length. 

One fitting note that I didn't discover until they were all finished and being worn, is that I think they are too wide around the ankle. You can see it pretty clearly in these pics. At the moment the weather is pretty warm, so I'm wearing them with the hems rolled up a bit. However, when it cools off and I want to cover my ankles up again, I'll unpick the hem and take some of that width out from the side seam. 

For the topstitching on the back pocket, I used one of the downloadable designs that you can access from the Closet Case Patterns site when you sign up for their newsletter. I transferred the design to the pocket pieces using white carbon paper and a tracing wheel, and I'm soooo happy with how they came out. I would definitely recommend the designs that use straight rather than curved lines for getting a clean result.  

Fabric and Interfacing: 

If you recognised that this turquoise denim was one of the nine pieces of stash fabric I pledged to use up in my #2019makenine plans, then you get a million points. This project is my fourth completed project for that challenge, although a lot more sewing has been happening that aren't part of those make nine plans. This fabric is some turquoise-y stretch denim that I bought from Fabric Godmother a few years ago. Since buying it, I'd fallen out of love with it, but now that it's made up into a garment that feels good to wear, I'm a fan again. The elastane/Lycra content must be pretty high, because it has a kind of synthetic-y sheen, but because of that content, it feels like I'm basically wearing leggings rather than jeans. 

I had a long debate with myself about what to use for the facing and interfacing for the waistband. Feeling comfortable, particularly round my waist is of MASSIVE importance to me, and can totally dictate whether or not a garment I've made ever gets worn. I can't remember if I used interfacing on the waistband of my first pair of Gingers, however I used a non-stretch woven cotton for the waistband facing, so that waistband basically has no give. However, due to the fact that that pair sits so low, I still find them comfortable to wear, as long as I have a belt to stop them heading south.   

But because this second pair were going to be sitting higher up, closer to my natural waistline, I wanted to ensure more give so that I wouldn't feel constricted. I decided to use the same stretch denim to face the waistband, plus I applied fusible interfacing for knits to the waistband piece itself. The result is a pleasingly stretchy waistband that definitely does not feel constricting. Howevs.... they do start to migrate down a bit whilst they are being worn. I'm wearing a belt with them to counteract this, which slightly nullifies the point of a stretchy waistband. Any thoughts?!

Oh but wait! Did you see my pocket bags?! I got to use up an awesome remnant of quilting cotton that I'd bought from Ditto in Brighton yonks ago. It's got a cute 1950s kitchen print which is kind of at odds with a pair of turquoise skinny jeans, but I think that makes me like the combo even more. 


You've probably already gathered that I'm really into this me-made! I promise to dig deep and sort out the excess width around the ankles so that I'll like them even more. I find jeans making sooooo satisfying. This year's Me-Made-May challenge taught me that a pair of black skinny jeans would be a useful addition to my wardrobe. So when Autumn hits, I'll keep my eyes peeled for some great black stretch denim and use this pattern exactly as it is for those. 


Elisabeth said...

Great-looking jeans! No need to take them in at the ankles, in my oppinion,which doesn't count ;)

Fabric Tragic said...

They’re fab!

Linda (ACraftyScrivener) said...

That is a conundrum, and one I identify with! how about a stretchy belt? Here we can get really nice, soft 1.5” elastic that comes in a variety of colors that would be perfect, something like this: No Buckle Stretch Belt For Women/Men Elastic Waist Belt Up to 33" for Jeans Pants I have had this idea for a while, have been meaning to try it out!

MrsC (Maryanne) said...

Oh yes, these are gorgeous and look amazing with the mustard shirt. I agree re elastic belt - there's fancy and colored elastics out there and one of those join and click fastenings maybe with a bit of leather either side for stability and to make it look more lux? Here's a link to some I saw in etsy

Mond said...

Maybe you could use non-stretch interfacing for the back part of the waistband and stretch interfacing for the front part? I have never tried this, just an idea...

Zoe said...

Thanks everyone! The idea of a stretch elastic belt is genius, plus I'm very intrigued about the idea to mix stretch and non-stretch interfacing. Thanks so much for your suggestions and comment, much appreciated
Zoe xxx

Jo said...

Your top stitching is something to behold. Those are great jeans. I haven't made a pair for a while - been to the charity shop instead! Jo xxx

Megan said...

These are so cute, I love the color! What works for me on the jeans waistband conundrum is this: I use un-interfaced stretch denim for the waistband. As I am installing it, I stretch it slightly as I am sewing it on, as one would with a knit neckband (but to a lesser degree, of course). I typically start at the center back so that both sides are stretched evenly. I like to use fairly stretchy/soft denim and this has worked great for me on several pairs so far. Before I figured this out, I had to go back and retrofit a pair by inserting 1" elastic into the back waistband. That worked well for me too, but it is fairly obvious if anyone catches a glimpse of my back waistband.

Arshia Ali said...

Lovely dress, thanks for sharing.
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