Jeans have always been on my mental list of “things that are hard to sew”, and also on my list of “things that never fit me when I buy them from the store”. My combination of slim legs and hips and a bigger waist means that I have a lot of bagginess around the crotch and bum on RTW jeans, as demonstrated here:
Therefore I was really excited when the Closet Case Files Ginger Jeans pattern came out: although I was intimidated by it, it was finally the chance to have tailor-made jeans perfectly fit for me! I was a bit concerned that my measurements were slightly outside the largest size (18), so I decided to muslin both View A (lower rise, stovepipe legs) and View B (high waisted, skinny legs) to see which suited me better, to check for sizing and fit, and to practice my construction techniques.
First up, view A muslin: not bad, and as you can see, already better than my RTW ones!
However, I liked view B a lot more. Because I’m short waisted they actually don’t look so high-rise on me, and the proportions suit me a lot better. I had already made a narrow thigh adjustment on this pair which involves shaving width off the crotch seam, but I overdid it a bit, so these were too tight. I added back in a bit of width back into my final pair.
Fitting done, I dove into my first pair, and they were a success! The size 18 worked well as a base, and I ended up using the following alterations:
These have been worn in constant rotation since I made them, so I quickly snapped up some black denim and made another pair. After I’d worn the first ones a few times they did get a touch baggy, so I decided to be more aggressive in fitting these in the knowledge they’d bag out a bit later. So, I used the same pattern that I’d adjusted before, but I sewed them at 1/2 inch seam allowance at the hips but a 5/8 seam allowance everywhere else. The results are definitely skinnier! The waistband is also a touch pinchy because this time I cut it on grain and interfaced it… so I’m going to see if it stretches out to be a bit more comfortable – if not, I’ll take the waistband off and add a new one.
If you’re interested in learning how to do jeans topstitching, I also just published a tutorial! It’s pretty easy but if you use some of these tips you’ll definitely get a better result.
So I totally love my jeans, and the only significant downside is that the sizing is somewhat limited. That said, if you’re usually an indie 20 or 22 do consider trying these as they run a bit big, and the stretch in your denim can compensate for a lot!
Size Range (1 – 5): 2, for only going up to a large size 18.
Instructions (1 – 5): 5, really excellent!
Construction Process (1 – 5): 5, much more straightforward than I would have imagined and no drafting errors.
Final Fit (1 – 4): 4, I’m working on it but I think I can get to a 5! They have also looked awesome on all the plus size women I’ve seen in them.
Overall rating (1 – 5): 4 – the only reason they’re not a 5 is because of the limited size range.