Jeans. I don't know about you but I looooove wearing jeans. A good pair of jeans is a must have for most people. However finding that perfect pair in the RTW world is tricky. Especially when you are on a budget and your body is not exactly on the same wave length with the standardized clothing manufacturing world. Which often is the case for me. I have been thinking about one day making my own jeans that fit me well and are reasonably priced(and obviously have good quality) for as long as I have been really serious about sewing. And it has remained as a future goal, a quiet whisper in the back of my mind saying "One day" Today I am proud to say that the day has arrived and I made me some goddamn jeans. And what a pair are they.
Meet Marble Gingers. My first go at making real jeans and a wearable muslin for the Ginger Jeans pattern by Heather. When the pattern came out I thought "Yes, this is what I need in my life" and bought it right away. If you already have the pattern, you can't say the reason why you haven't made your jeans is "I'm too busy to make my own pattern" But it still took me a while to assemble the pattern and dive into the sewing process. But I got there. And instead of feeling the water with my toes first, I dove in head first and hoped for the best.
What you are seeing here is proof of my insanity. I took some white denim that I had been hoarding in my fabric stash and dyed it. For a muslin. Yes, you heard me right. A muslin. (I'll explain the process for getting this coloring result later in the post) I got the idea of having jeans with black and red marble effect stuck in my brain and unlike Elsa, I refused to let it go! (Dated reference for the win!)
I cut out view B in size 10 for the waist and size 12 for the hips. Then I followed the instructions provided by the pattern and hauled my ass into the jeans once they were ready for the waistband. That was when I realized I needed to make a few fitting adjustments. I had to take in 1 cm from the waist and hips and 0,5cm around the calves. Then I chopped off 4cm from the hem and lowered the waistband by 0,5cm in the front, 1,5cm on the sides and 4cm on the back. I also had to tweak the shape of the crotch curve. I didn't get the perfect result for the crotch yet, but I'm hoping to get there with my next pair.
Overall I am very pleased with the end result. I've received quite few compliments on my jeans and people have been really surprised that I actually made these. Yay for sewing ego boost!
Though they are not perfect. The issue with these jeans is that the denim is stretchy, but not enough. Which means while they do give in a bit, sometimes they can feel a bit too stiff. But they look awesome and they aren't too uncomfortable, so I'll let it slide. No pain, no gain, right?
So to get the marble effect for my jeans I went through the following steps. First I cut out the pieces I needed from the main fabric, then made these long fabric sausages by slightly twisting the fabric lengthwise and wrapping thread around it.
Then I made a batch of black dye, threw the sausages in the dye and followed the instructions on the dye package.
After I had finished dying the sausages black, I unwrapped them and prepared a batch of red dye. Then I threw the unwrapped pieces into that. And here's where I went rogue and hoped my gut feeling was right. As I was after the marble effect, I wanted the red to be blotchy and not even, so I made less dye than needed(about 75% of the needed amount) and didn't stir the fabric in the pot as much as instructed. Stirring the fabric makes sure that the fabric is dyed evenly, but that wasn't my end goal. So I kept the stirring at minimum to ensure the dye didn't burn to the bottom of the pot. And I was so pleased with my end result. I love it when a plan comes together.
So that's it. My first jeans. First but definitely not last. Though I think I'll keep the insanity at bay with next pairs. But who knows what weird things I'll come up with next.