I Made Jeans!!!

And you would never know it just looking at them!  They look exactly like what you might find in stores!  With topstitching, rivets, and everything!


Fine. No more exclamation points. For now.

Last year, Closet Case Files came out with a jeans pattern: the Ginger jeans.  Jeans were one of those things that scared me.  N0t just the sewing but also sourcing the denim and hardware.  But Closet Case Files came out with a kit.  So I bought it, not knowing when I’d actually get around to using it.

And guess what?  Pattern Review gave me the push I needed.  I looked at their contest calendar and they had one for jeans (it ends Sunday).  So I made the jeans. View A with the lower waist and less skinny legs. (Pictures are a little overexposed because I wanted the topstitching to be visible.)



I’ll be honest.  I was worried.  I didn’t have any fabric to make a muslin so I had to throw caution to the wind.  My measurements put me in a size 14 so I made that.  Yes, I did baste them first to asses the fit.  There’s throwing caution to the wind and then there’s plain craziness.  I ain’t crazy.

And then… I’m sorry to say that there isn’t actually that much to say.  Just a few things:

-The instructions were good and clear but the sew along is referenced a lot.  And I looked it up a lot.  I actually went back and forth between the two a fair bit.

Cashmerette has some great tips for topstitching.  I did a few practice runs and ended up using my ditch quilting foot for one line with the needle moved over to the left a bit (line closest to seams).  For the second line, I used my regular foot, lining up the first topstitched line with the right side of the foot and moving the needle over a little to the right.  I have never done such even topstitching.  Never.  And each line was perfect the first time around.  Unlike the bar tacks which I still need to practice…



-I had a bit of a gap in the waistband so I took a teeny dart at center back.  Just 1/2″ total at the top. Hidden behind the belt loop to keep it neat and tidy.


-I did proper flat felled seams wherever I could.  Flat felled seams like the ones I learned when I took a class at FIT (it was a “learn to sew class”).  Flat felled seems sewn with wrong sides together and then topstitched from the outside.  I like how that puts the bulk of the seam on the outside so that it doesn’t press against the skin.

-I used leftovers from this dress for the pockets and the waistband facing.


-Some of my rivet posts were too long so I padded them with a couple layers of denim.  That scares me a lot less than trimming the rivet post down. (And I’m going to need an anvil and an awl for my sewing.)


And that’s it!  Will I sew more jeans?  Yes!  There’s the fact that this is my most successful sewing project ever.  And then there’s the fact that the kit came with enough hardware and denim for two and I can’t let it go to waste now, can I?  The next pair will be mash up of views A and B.  I know a higher waist wouldn’t work with my proportions but I want that skinny leg.  I’ll also be going down a size.  I’ve been wearing my jeans and the denim has relaxed.  They aren’t baggy but the waist has grown a bit more than I like.  A belt fixes it right up but I want to try to get a better fit there.  I’m hoping the smaller size will be all that’s needed but I’m also prepared to change the angle of the center seam on the back yoke and change the waistband.  Can you tell the fear is gone?


2015 Jeans Contest

Creative mommy at home to two wonderful little girls, trying to juggle family, sewing, exercise, family, knitting, photography, and did I mention family?

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11 comments on “I Made Jeans!!!
  1. Charity says:

    I think you’ve made the best pair of Ginger jeans I’ve seen yet! Your top-stitching is amazing!


  2. Jana says:

    You and your jeans look awesome! 🙂 Best, Jana



  3. shesaserging says:

    I just made my first pair of jeans for this contest too…isn’t it great to have that kick in the rear? I think the pattern and denim might have sat in my closet for much longer without the inspiration (and deadline) that a contest provides! I love the look of your jeans…really they look perfect! I used a hook and eye fastener but I think I need to find a button and rivets…can I ask where you got them?


    • Oh yes! I’m sure I would still be scared of jeans if it wasn’t for that contest! My buttons and rivets came from Closet Case Files. When she released the Ginger jeans patterns, she sourced denim, buttons, and rivets and made up kits with enough to make two. She sold out of that kit but has since made up another kit (and sold out of that one too!) I wouldn’t be surprised if she made more kits in the future. In the meantime, she did suggest some sources for jean hardware in this post: Jean Making Supplies Hopefully, that’s helpful!


  4. Meigan says:

    These look great! Well done 🙂


  5. Lori B. says:

    WOWEEEEEEEE! Congratulations, these are fabulous! I don’t know if I’m more impressed with the jeans themselves or your courage to try sewing jeans. Well done!


    • Thank you! I was so intimidated at first but in the end, it isn’t actually all that difficult. Lots of switching back and forth between sewing and topstitching so it does take a while but not hard at all.


  6. […] what is it?  The Moss Skirt by Grainline Studio. Using up the last of the denim from my jeans. And yes, that’s some leftover Wonder Woman fabric for my pocket linings.  It’s so […]


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