Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Jeans Are Looking a Little More Like a Skirt

I decided to play with my jeans-to-skirt project tonight, mostly because I forgot to remeasure the kids before bed and I cannot find the random scrap of paper where I wrote down their measurements last time I did it. The number nineteen sort of sounds like something I have heard before and that might be Clayton's waist measurement, but I really might be making that up. Better that I wait to finish their pants until I remeasure them tomorrow.

Instead of finishing the kids' pants, I started tonight just cutting at my jeans to see if I could make some sense of the front and back center seams. If you remember, I was trying to figure out the best way to get rid of the extra crotch fabric. Here is what it looked like before tonight:

So, I just tried to straighten out the edges as well as I could.

And then I cut some triangles to sew between what used to be the pant legs. I decided that it made more sense and looked better to use two triangles with a center seam, especially because the rear of the jeans has a center seam that would stand out awkwardly if it was not continued,  but rather cut off suddenly for no apparent reason.

I fit a piece of fabric from the bottom of the legs into the space and cut what looked to be the right size and shape. Once I had these triangles pinned, I realized they needed to be shaped a little differently and I trimmed them down quite a bit. I wonder if there would have been a more accurate method for cutting these pieces other than trial and error. I really know nothing about what it is I am doing...

Here is what the sewn seams looked like on the front of the skirt (on the first try at least):

Well, it turned out that the pieces that I cut were way too big. When I put the skirt on to see what they looked like, the fabric between the "legs" popped out and looked really silly. I had not yet pressed the seams, so this made it worse, but even after pressing the seams, there was still simply too much fabric.

I sewed a new, tighter seam along the center between the two triangles and trimmed the excess fabric to try to pull this area a little tighter. I also cut some length off of the bottom of the skirt, since I want it to be on the shorter side.

One last picture - this is what the skirt looks like right now. Better, but I am not sure that the skirt does not look a little bit weird...What do you think? I would love to heard suggestions from anyone who might have a bit more experience with this sort of thing...or even from someone without sewing experience, but with more vision when it comes to fashion.

I need to match the existing colors used on the back of the jeans. The center seam in the back (the same one I mentioned earlier) is sewn with a bright orange thread with a parallel seam in a grayish-green. I am going to try my best to blend this existing seam as I continue with the one between the two triangles in the back. But I cannot do any more until I get some thread.

Here is one final question. I have had a problem a few times now (with this project and with others) to get my machine to move smoothly over a large bump or rise in the fabric, such as when I am sewing over another seam. I read somewhere that you can create a sort of shim out of scrap fabric to help raise the presser foot and guide the needle up over the hump. I tried this tonight, though I was pulling it out of memory and might not be remembering exactly how it was done. In any case, it did not work. Do you know of any tricks for moving smoothly over such areas?

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