5.07.2012

basic uniform



in my heart of hearts and in my soul of souls i am a jeans and tee kind of girl. who isn't? unfortunately, its not always easy to find a good pair of jeans. until this recent pair of jeans, i owned two pairs that i wore in heavy-ish rotation. one was my colette clovers, which i don't think really count as jeans since the styling is more trouser-like. the second was a pair of high-waisted skinny jeans from jbrand that i bought a bit big and the waist has a habit of scooching down from its high-rise heights which leaves me with a saggy crotch problem. not very comfortable! 

so it was time to make a new pair of jeans. not the most glamorous sewing - but necessary! i had this stretch denim from mood leftover from my denim clovers. it was just enough to eek out this pair of jeans! i used the simplicity built by wendy pattern that came with the book, sew u (it looks like the pattern is now out of print, but maybe it still comes with the book?) i've had this book since i was a teenager, but this is the only pattern i've ever made from it.




i cut these in a straight size 6 but after sewing up the inseam and basting the rest of the legs together i had to take them in a whole lot. i think the 4 would have fit better, although i may still have had to take it in a bit. the jeans look a bit baggy in these pictures because, well i've been wearing them non-stop since i made them! time for a washing!! 

this pattern has a really modern fit. a low (but not too low, no butt-cracks please!) waist and a very straight-through-the-hip cut. which is great for me since i'm also kind of straight-through-the-hip! i obviously changed the leg, narrowing them to the knee and then keeping 'em straight and skinny to the ankle, leaving the length long so they bunch up at my foot. 

the built by wendy pattern isn't necessarily a jeans pattern. as a matter of fact, you don't really need a specific "jeans" pattern to make jeans! because when it comes to jeans, the devil is in the details.  when i sat down to sew these i had my pair of jbrands by my side and another super old pair of levi's. i kept opening up both pairs and checking out how the fly was inserted, where were the bar tacks, how the belt loops were attached, and most importantly, what was topstitched and what wasn't.




the topstitching (and perhaps also the pocket shape) are really what says "jeans" on a pair of pants. i've noticed that the "fancier" the jean, the less topstitching it has, and the more casual the jean the more topstitching it has. but almost all jeans have some sort of topstitching around the fly, pockets (back and front) and waistband. some have two lines down the inseam, my jbrand pair has none. i made this pair with a single line of topstitching down the inseam. my double needle broke after using it once around the fly when i tried to ease it over the zipper teeth (woops!) and so i was left to eyeball the rest of the topstitching with more or less accuracy!

and speaking of details - what's a jean without the rivets! again, this is a totally optional detail - some jeans have them, some don't. i bought my small rivets and rivet button for the waistband from taylor tailor - who makes some pretty awesome jeans! i'm not gonna lie - they were a tad bit harder for me to get in than taylor makes it out to be in his tutorial! I did a lot of pounding to get them to stay put... but i think it was worth it because it is those little details that makes these look a bit more professional.




since i was on a built by wendy kick i decided to open her other book, sew u home stretch, and make up the crew neck tshirt from the pattern provided. i compared the paper pattern to a favorite tshirt of mine from american apparel and saw that my shirt was about an inch narrower than the smallest size on the pattern. i made the necessary adjustments and what seriously seemed like two seconds later, i had this new mint green tshirt! the fabric is the minted cream organic cotton knit from tessuti that i bought on a whim with my last purchase. it sort of looks like i bought it at american apparel...go figure... 

also! i replaced my twin needle aaandd... twin needles for finishing knits! who knew, right?!?! oh...everyone but me? oh. ok then. well i'm happy to be joining the club!



xx

58 comments:

  1. Holy freakin' moly.  You absolutely amaze me.  Just churning out jeans like it's NOTHING!  That's so bad*ss.  I'm totally going to pretend I'm not insanely jealous.  They look incredible!  I think one day when I decide to try again I'm going to have to invest in some rivets.

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  2. I am seriously impressed with these jeans.  They look store-bought.

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  3. Holy sh*t!!!  You MADE those?!?!?!  I don't know whether to love or to hate you-- you're seriously ridiculous!

    And by that, I mean these are awesome and you look gorgeous!  Great job!

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  4. You look incredibly gorgeous in these jeans! 

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  5. You're too adorable and these jeans are over the top amazing!
    One day, when I grow up, I'll attempt to make jeans half as nice as these. :)

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  6. Such a great outfit! It's like Marlon Brando done like a lady. I have the same book as you and I totally forgot there were patterns inside. I'm going to have to whip that baby out of storage and give it another read. It's been years. You did a great job on the jeans and I think comparing it to your Jbrand and Levi's jeans helped tons. I will have to keep that in mind when I make my first pair of jeans.

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  7. I love these jeans! I've had Sew U for the longest time too, and haven't really made anything from it since I actually starting being halfway good at sewing.  I'm having great success with my Clover pants though (due in no small part to your fantastic tutorials!), and since your jeans look so great I may have to muster up the courage to try out the pattern.

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  8. Those jeans came out absolutely amazing! I'd live in jeans and a tee if I looked that stylish, too. LOL. Very nice.

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  9. Wow!! I have had both her books like forever and have not made a single thing out of them!!! Now I must dig it out!  Your jeans look so good, all I can say is WOW again!!!

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  10. Your jeans look amazing in fact your whole outfit looks so professional really really great job :-)

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  11. Lovely jeans :) I have just finished my jeans too and I had as little topstitching as possible. Call me lazy! :)

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  12. Perfection ! all those details are spot on! Love your jeans!

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  13.  ooooh!  I'm just about to start on my first ever pair of jeans and
    really hope they turn out half as good as these.  Amazing job!

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  14. Will you make me a pair?? I'm totally serious! Jeans are the one good fitting item that escapes me. When you're home you could take all the measurements and then - well you get the idea! Wow! Jeans that fit! Great job! They look fabulous!

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  15. Your jeans are awesome and super flattering on you! I love how all your attention to details has paid off and they look so professional!

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  16. ok, im crazy impressed.  jeans seem so daunting to me.  this would make my mmmay so much easier.  i think i have that pattern.  will have to keep this in the back of my mind.  man you are impressive.

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  17. Dude. DUDE. DUUUUUUUUDE! That's THREE DUDES because these jeans are BLOWING MY MIND. They look so profesh! And I have the effing hardest time finding jeans that don't do weird gaping things because of my crazy hip to waist ratio that I totally need to get on this Sallie-make-your-own-jeans-but-of-course train.

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  18. Your jeans look amazinggg! Totally legit and real jean-like. Color me impressed.

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  19. that, my dear, is perfection.. and, coming from a person that doesn't even wear jeans (never ever), that's the greatest compliment ever :)

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  20. The jeans look great!  Nice job!

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  21. Thanks Melissa!

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  22. A compliment indeed!! Thanks!!

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  23. Finding or fitting a pattern will be the hardest part - the rest of it is pretty straightforward!! Actually the most annoying thing for me was switching out threads constantly because I only have one machine... perhaps a reason to buy a new one?? Anyway - totally make some jeans! You won't regret it!!

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  24. Thank you!! Yeah I felt like having these would make my MMMay a breeze since I pretty much wear jeans most days. 

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  25. Thank you Marie!

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  26. Thank you Evie! I'm sure they will :)

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  27. Haha!! The topstitching on these was... well.. over the top! Especially with my twin needle broken! Switching out threads was such a pain too! 

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  28. Thank you!! Jeans and a tshirt are one of those outfits which are sometimes best store bought - so I really wanted mine to look as close to the commercial stuff as possible. 

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  29. I know! These books have been sitting on my shelves forever and I never really did anything with them. The patterns are actually great starting places and I really like the fit of these pants.

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  30. Haha! Thank you Susan - its such an easy look!

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  31. Oh I'm so glad the tutorials were helpful to you!! You can totally convert the clover pattern to jeans - just change the pocket shape and do all the topstitching and voila! Jeans!! 

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  32. I know - I actually keep forgetting about her books, but they do have some nice basic information in them and, while these are the first patterns I've ever made (jeans and tshirt) I think they're nice basic patterns and the fit is really modern which is nice. I think the tshirt pattern was a bit unnecessary - I probably didn't need it, but its still nice to have!

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  33. Thank you Lizz :)

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  34. Haha!! Thank you!! You should totally make a pair of jeans to go with all your awesome Renfrews! Perfect pairing ;)

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  35. Thank you Crystal! I think comparing them to my commercial jeans as I was sewing helped them get that same look - which is what I was after.

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  36. Thank you Liza Jane!! Yeah the rivets were the most touch-and-go part of this project. The first day I wore them my button actually popped off and I lost a rivet - so I pounded the hell out of them when I replaced them and they seem to be holding in place pretty well. I'll let you know how they handle being washed - that will be the REAL test ;)

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  37. Great jeans!  I've been on a jeans making kick lately, too.  But, I have trouble enough with the button that I haven't been brave enough to try rivets.  Glad you gave it a go with much success!

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  38. Oooh, sewing jeans & a tee is so smart because that's such real every day outfit. I have both of those built by wendy books -- I've never used them but maybe now I will! Brilliant touch with the rivets, it really does look super professional!

    And no... you are not the only person who didn't think about using a twin needle for knits... but now I know ;)

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  39. Seriously. No one would ever know this outfit wasn't a professional and expensive RTW brand, well done! :D

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  40. those jeans look so pro! and i love the mint color tee, too. do you happen to know if the pants pattern in the book had a Simplicity number on it? and thanks for the link - looks like they have everything you need to make a pair of jeans!

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  41. Thanks Dixie! You know - I'm not sure that it did have a number. I just pulled out the pattern pieces to see if it was printed somewhere and I don't see it. I'm not positive - but I think its the same pattern I linked to in the post which is 3850. Didn't you make a pair of BBW pants?! I think it was your post that reminded me I even had this pattern!!

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  42. I was just wondering because I know BBW had two pants patterns - 3850 and another pair that look kind of like cargo-jeans. 3850 are more trouser-like. I have 3850 but not the other one. I don't have the original BBW book (I have a couple others) and I didn't even know it came with a pants pattern. I might have to go grab a copy if it is the other pattern 'cause that one is hard to find! If your jeans are 3850 then I'm jealous! Yours look so cool and my pants were all frumpy and ill-fitting, ha!

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  43. These are perfect!

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  44. I don't think these were the cargo ones. All the illustrations in the book have them looking like regular bootcut/flared trousers. Although there are  options for adding cargo pockets - but I still think its 3850. There really wasn't anything very special about this pattern. I just think they fit me well - but I don't know that I would recommend them to a lot of people because they aren't the most "curvy" of fit.

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  45. Long time reader, first time commenter - these jeans have brought me out of the woodwork! OMG these are the greatest jeans - they look fantastic!! Totally badass.

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  46. quietandsmall adventuresMay 9, 2012 at 5:05 PM

    i seriously thought i had already commented here about how freaking gorgeous those jeans are!! thanks sooo much for leaving the tips on whipping up that rachel comey top on my post, i can't wait for my fabric to get here so i can start!! if my jeans look even half as good as yours and tanit-isis's jeans, i'll be stoked!

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  47. Those jeans are awesome! They're so real looking. Well, in the sense of looking just like the standard article, not in the sense of being imaginary. You now what I mean. ;)

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  48. These are darling, Sallie! They fit you really well and the rivets make them look completely professional. The top is super cute, too.

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  49. Gorgeous jeans! I look at this and think, "man, sewing is so cool". Isn't it? When it works. ;) Anyways, I really love the color of the denim, such a perfect blue. I have some high-waist jbrand jeans I splurged on and they fit so well (I had to go down a size) so I'm thinking I might have to attempt a copy-your-own rather than go with a pattern. Thanks for inspiring!

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  50. These jeans are CRAZY AMAZING. I believe the word is "badass". Yes, yes it is.
    I've had that book for ages and only made a variation on the skirt, how sad is that?  This definitely makes me want to investigate the fit of this pattern on myself.

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  51. not that you shouldn't make your own jeans, but I finally found that the jeans from Ann Taylor LOFT actually DON'T gape at the waist and slide down like every other pair i've owned. It's worth a try until you make a pair.

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  52. You resolved the eternal problem: jeans that I like and that fit! They fit you perfectly and you look very cute in a jeans & tee style ;)

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  53. Well done, these are really beautiful! I've been wanting to make a pair but good denim is so expensive! So I'm just working on wool trousers in the meanwhile. Thanks for the inspiration though ;D

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  54. sissy my love, you look so damn sexy - make me look like her!  Your a double scribble?  yeah, it's looking good!  well done I SO want a pair!

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  55. Your jeans turned out great! Good job with those rivets!

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  56. Oh my goodness! Your jeans are amazing! I tried making jeans about half a year ago, and it was a complete failure. For some reason, my inseams didn't match up. It doesn't look like you had any trouble with that, did you? I think it probably had something to do with my self-drafted pattern. It's really encouraging to see that it is possible, though! So you may be the reason that I try again =D

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  57. As it turns out, the patterns in the book were not sold separately outside of the book. The pant, skirt, and button-down shirt were not regular Simplicity patterns. Dixie, I hope that helps, you should try to get your hands on a copy of the book if you can. I can vouch for the skirt pattern too.

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  58. I completely love your jeans and your tee! The jeans look like you bought them and they were really expensive! Gonna have to get me a jeans pattern bc I don't have one I really like. At least I did, 10 lbs ago, but not anymore... :/ Anyways, new follower & fellow sewer here! :)
    -Reyna
    http://www.glamglory.blogspot.com

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