|This is Nick doing his best Bruce Springsteen impression... *swoon*|
Alternate post title: How To Objectify Your Man.
Hi there! I hope you guys aren't sick of looking at jeans yet, because (un)fortunately for you, I'm not sick of making them! I figured since I got some good jeans-sewing-momentum going with my last pair, I might as well take advantage of it and make good on a promise to Nick to sew him a pair, too.
Now, I don't need to explain my selfish-seamstress ways to ya'll - I know I'm in good company here! But, this past Christmas I bought Nick all the goods - denim, thread, buttons, rivets - for me to make him his very own pair of jeans. And then proceeded to not make him jeans for the next six months! Seriously, I am the worst gift-giver in the history of ever. The fact that I made myself a pair of jeans before his... well... I was starting to feel like if I didn't get on it soon it would just end up being one of those things that gets brought up 20 years from now in an argument ("yeah, like that time you said you were going to make me jeans...") And really, it's not completely unselfish sewing - brownie points with your husband never hurt anything!
But the jeans! The jeaannnnssss!!! I made Nick a pair of pants back in November using the Jedediah pants pattern from Thread Theory with the intention of using them as a wearable muslin for a jeans pattern. We discussed a few changes he wanted - like a smaller back yoke and higher back pockets, and I felt confident that I could adjust the pattern to make it more of a jeans style, which mainly meant changing the shape of the front pockets. However when I went hunting for denim, I really decided that only selvedge denim would do for my guy. I bought the 13.5 oz Cone Mills Selvedge Denim from Taylor Tailor's Supply shop (love that guy!) I love the look of a classic, no-nonsense jean on a man - and it's really Nick's style, too (go figure). I felt like selvedge denim would make a great classic looking jean, but still give that extra special little 'something'.
However, that presented a bit of a problem. If you're unfamiliar with selvedge denim jeans, typically the selvedge - which usually has a contrasting color (this denim has a white and red line) - is used for the out-seam of the leg, which means that the pattern must be completely straight along the out-seam. This meant that I was going to have to make some much larger alterations to the Jedediah pattern, and, truth be told, was one of the main reasons I procrastinated on this for so long. I was really worried that shifting the pattern that much would cause the pants to fall weird. However, I bit the bullet and just decided what the hell, and gave it a go! And it worked out, so phew!
(Apologies for the nasty carpet in my sewing room... I swear it's clean, just old) Hopefully you can see in these photos the difference between the original Jedediah pants pattern on the left, and the altered "Jedediah Selvedge Jeans" pattern on the right. Basically, I measured the distance between the new, straight, out-seam and the original, curved, out-seam at different key points along the length of the leg (high hip, low hip, crotch, thigh, knee, etc.) and shifted the inseam over the corresponding amount. You can also see how much I changed the yoke piece, too. I measured an old pair of Nick's jeans to get this shape, then transferred the amount I cut off of the yoke to the top of the pants backs.
I may have taken a smidgen of width out of the hip/butt area while making all these adjustments, but I swear it was for a good reason! I felt like after wearing, Nick's Jedediah khaki's tend to get a very saggy seat and I thought that might help solve the problem. But I think instead it just made the jeans tight in allll the right places!! Bwahahahaha! Accidental WIN for this lucky lady!
While I don't know that this iteration is Nick's 'perfect jeans pattern', I actually really love the way they turned out. Next time (ha!) I would like to take a bit of width out of the waist in the back because I think that might actually be the cause of the saggy seat. And I might consider taking a tiny bit of width out of the legs, although Nick is pretty happy with the way the legs fit as is.
But let's take a look at some of the details, because with jeans, it's alllll about the details!
I stole a lof of ideas for these from Taylor Tailor's totally drool-worthy jeans. Here you can see the coin pocket which uses the selvedge edge as a nice design feature. Also prominent in this photo is some of my less-than-perfect topstitching! I was really worried about sewing such thick denim on my conventional sewing machine (an older model Singer HD) but it actually handled it like a champ through most of the process - until I got to the belt loops... oy vey. My machine doesn't love belt loops on a good day, but it was just not. happening. with these! I ended up forgoing my usual bartack method for the belt loops and instead just did a few rows of straight stitching. We'll see how well they hold up.
For the back pockets I copied an old pair of Nick's jeans. Everything that could be sewn with a flat-felled seam was sewn with a flat-felled seam. Including the back rise and yokes, which results in a charmingly, slightly off 'v' where the two yokes meet.
If love were a seam, it would be 72 inches of painstakingly, hand rolled, flat-felled inseam!
And, oddly enough, one of my favorite details is this little cobalt blue buttonhole!
I gave Nick strict instructions to limit the amount of washing he gives these jeans. Indigo dyed, 100% cotton denim like this is known for it's ability to break in and 'mold' to the wearer, creating beautiful fades with time. I'm actually quite smitten with these jeans, to be honest! So smitten that I'm itching to make myself a pair, too! But don't worry, I'll take a jeans-sewing break for now and make something else for a bit to end the denim monotony that's been going on around these parts!
And now, because it's my blog and I say so...
Let's take one last look at that tush!!
Seriously... dude butts do not get enough screen time on this blog!