Jeans, Bitches! (Part II)

Emboldened by success at my first pair of handmade jeans last year, I resolved this year to tackle another pair. This time it’s the Ginger Jeans pattern from Closet Core Patterns (nee Closet Case Files).

Ginger Jeans in stretch denim with red topstitching. Top is a Henley tee from Jalie.

A lot of indie home sewing patterns are hyped. You can believe the hype with this one! The pattern is fabulous, and I am delighted with the results. The instructions do a nice job of walking you through without excessing hand-holding, and the quality of the drafting and details are top-notch.

For efficiency’s sake, I put two sewing machines in service – one for construction, one for topstitching. I chose this red leftover from a bygone upholstery project. I love using red as a neutral color to make ordinary garments pop.

More fancy pocket embroidery and topstitching

The pocket design is part of a larger motif from Urban Threads called “Gothic Gate.” I am still learning to use the embroidery unit from by Bernina 580. This time I learned how to skip around in a design to get just the bits I want. Many machine embroidery designs have an excess of curlicues, subtle color gradations and other elements that turn me off.

Entire “Gothic Gate” design

I was able to embroider just the bird motif at the bottom by skipping ahead in preview mode until the needle got to the part I wanted. Luckily, it was end at the end of the design. So I stitched just that bit, baby-sitting the machine so I could be sure not to get more than I bargained for (still shuddering horrors at my multicolor project last summer).

Obligatory butt shot

The pattern had two design options – a low-rise jean with wider legs, or a high-rise skinny jean. I opted for the former, figuring the leg fit would be the hard part, and I could always raise the rise on a subsequent pair if I was otherwise happy.

The fit was pretty great with minimal tweaking from me – just a 1-cm back crotch extension, lengthening 1 inch and taking in the waist 1.5 inches. The jeans tend to gape open a bit at center-back so I added a second belt loop back there – give the belt some love, I say!

The only major fit issue for the next pair (and there WILL be a next pair) is the back leg twisting and bagging sitch at the knee. I am pretty sure this happens for a combo of reasons – a bit of a knock-knee leg shape, a bit of chubbiness at the inner knee, and a bit of hyperextension of the calves.

Obligatory side view

Plus, this is pretty stretchy denim. I think I can figure this out for next time. In fact, I bought some more denim (less stretch) to try again – soon!

Author: shoes15

I live in Connecticut, USA with my husband and my dog, in an old house outfitted with a sewing room, a garden, an orchard, and a big liquor cabinet.

13 thoughts on “Jeans, Bitches! (Part II)”

  1. They look great. Having two machines for making jeans sure makes it easier than going back and forth with re-threading when doing the next bit of topstitching!

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  2. These look so awesome! I love your pocket embroidery. I also had similar fit issues at the back knee/calf area when I made the Gingers, but I haven’t yet gone back in to do pattern alterations. I think I probably also have a protruding calf, and maybe some of the other adjustments you mentioned making, so I would be really interested to see which adjustments you make to the pattern in the future. I can’t wait to see your next pair!

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  3. Thanks for the conformation on the calf/knee issues. I think more than one adjustment is probably needed. For starters I was going to try that Y-shaped back calf adjustment and see what happens. Let me know if you try it.

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