Tuesday, April 5, 2011

New adventures in sewing

Sadly, the cats wouldn't stand still long enough for a clear photo.

I tend to me a by the seat of my pants seamster*. I’m unlikely to sew from a pattern that I didn’t make myself, and on the rare occasions I do, I always make changes. I don’t mean changes for fit, more like “you know what this top needs? More buttons, less collar, different sleeves.” Even patterns I draft rarely make it to mock up or garment without changes. Somehow the shapes look different on fabric than they did on paper. I am slowly getting better at visualizing how a pattern will look in fabric, but I am not there yet.

All this is to preface saying that I am very nervous about this jeans idea. I’m excited about it, although my only foray into fitted pants, as opposed to bloomers for faire, did not go well at all. I just couldn’t figure out how to fit so many curves at once. Of course, that was at least 5 years ago, and I have learned a lot since then.

I’m not going to use a commercial pattern. I have one to look at and so I can follow some of the construction instructions, but I plan on basing the pattern on a pair of jeans that I own that fit really well except for being way to short. Honestly, length is the primary reason I am moving into the arena of pants making. I am 5’7”, which certainly isn’t short, but it also isn’t especially tall, so you wouldn’t think finding pants long enough would be an issue. Unfortunately, all of my height is in my legs. Since reaching my current height, I have owned a grand total of 5 pairs of pants that were actually long enough. Most of the time, even letting down the hem doesn’t give me enough length and it is really frustrating. The luxury of having pants that don’t show off my ankles is definitely worth a bit of work.

Up until this point 98% of my sewing has been costumes, corsets, and home décor. Most of the people I know who sew do mostly costumes and some special occasion wear, so working on actual everyday clothing is oddly intimidating to me. What do you sew? Why did you start sewing? Was there something that you once thought you would never make, but have now conquered?

The stretch denim is supposed to arrive on Thursday…

*note: In real life I say “sew-er”, but since that looks like a much less pleasant work in writing, I like seamster best on paper. Sewist just doesn’t work for me. Not sure why, just doesn’t.

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