Holy Christmas Trees! I Made Jeans!

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Holy Christmas Trees!  I made jeans.  Woot, woot! And, *gasp*, they fit. They are bloody fantastic.

Experiment:
Birkin Jeans by Baster and Gather
Size: 27

Materials:
2.5 yards of denim with 3% stretch
1/3 yard cotton
Gold Topstitching Thread
Blue Thread
6" Jean Zipper
Antique Polished Jean Button

Procedure:
I signed up to test this pattern.  When I received the email I was chosen, I immediately became intimidated.  Could I make jeans!?   Others probably had and mine will look amateur.  Oh the countless times I tried to talk myself out of this project. . .At the start of it, I would have resolutely proclaimed a 'Nope! Can't do this'  Many thanks to Lauren from Baste and Gather for her awesome pattern and the most amazing directions.  It was worth the effort.
I bought cheap fabric stretch denim fabric to make a muslin and to learn how to make a fly front.  Luckily the fly front came together quite easily -- it was the topstitching and pocket placement that was sloppy on my muslin.  The result was perfect for testing but could not even be called a decent wearable muslin.  The muslin process was so valuable as it gave the confidence that I could make jeans.
Soooooo, I cut into the expensive denim from Threadbare Fabrics.  I had to pump myself up with a playlist that included Eminem's Lose Yourself and The Beastie Boys Sabotage on full blast since cutting into expensive fabric is dead scary.  I even busted out the carbon paper and little pizza cutter to trace and achieve the perfect pocket placement.  I carefully topstitched.  And I am quite proud of the my backside ;)!
Yep, I am a fan.  Notice that I did not add the belt loops.  I rarely wear jeans with a belt or tuck in a shirt to show off a belt -- I don't have that kind of accessorizing power.  For sake of time, I omitted the loops -- they sit, made, in a little corner of my sewing table.  The most challenging part for me was the fly front.  I found that Lauren's directions, diagrams and a RTW pair of jeans I could look at over and over again were the key for me to sew a fly front.  The pocket bag also gave me a little trouble  and I'll admit that one of my pockets has the wrong side of the fabric facing out where it should be the right side but coins, gum, keys and lipstick don't care about which side of the fabric they are going to be shoved into.
These jeans sit below my natural waist and are similar to a beloved pair of RTW jeans I own.  The flare is quite large.  I ended up having to remove a good 4-5 inches from the bottom of the leg in order to get them to fall at a place I was comfortable (I guess I am a tad on the tiny side!).  These jeans were worth every curse and stitch that I had to unpick.   And although I received this pattern in exchange for testing I would buy it in a heart beat.  It is fabulous!
My Birkin jeans have been in heavy rotation and I am quite chuffed that the have held up through wash after wash and many tumbles in the dryer. Yeah, I probably shouldn't put them in the dryer but tumbling in the dryer seems to make them softer, loved, and comfy!  I love this pattern but more importantly, I made jeans that I love.

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Annie