Tuesday, 17 July 2012

The day I transformed jeans... into jeans.

For AGES, I've had these jeans in my 'To Tailor' drawer... Every now and then, I'd get them out to look at them and think about plans for them and what to do.

These jeans originally had some kind of crochet netting down the sides, which had started to fray, so I cut it all off!

Down the right side of the jeans, from top to bottom, is an opening. On the left side, this opening is broken by a pocket in the middle.

How funky are these jeans! I've not had the heart to throw them away, especially with all the ideas I've had with them! So since I still have my mother's sewing machine, it's time to transform them... Into jeans! :)

 Photos of the jeans before their transformation:

How exciting. Time to get started!

Luckily, I have plenty of left-over material from my butterfly canvases, so there were lots of colours and patterns to choose from! At the moment I'm going through a green faze, so I have chosen plain green, and patterned green (and floral pink) to use for this project... :)

Before I started sewing the material onto the jeans, I made sure I tied all the loose buckles back onto the jeans... I did NOT want them to get stuck in the needle of the machine and break it! Safety first. No matter how time consuming fiddling with little buckles and even littler pieces of threads, tying knots smaller than fleas around them, can be... :)

Now that that was done, I could start sewing! ... It was tricky at times to move the jeans in a way that was straight, but also (my biggest fear) keeping it all flat so as not to sew the jeans onto themselves! I started (no real reason why) with the left side which had the pocket in the middle. Considering this was the second time I'd used a sewing machine, I was happy with how fairly undramatic this was to do.

Next to do the bottom half. I wanted these jeans to flare out a little, so in my mind I needed a triangular piece of doubled up material. What I did, was measured what the rectangle area would be, and sewed a floral piece to a plain piece. Then, placing that on the opening where it would go, I measured out what the 'flare' would be (12cm), and then tied the bottom edges, top edges, and a bit along the sides of the opening together so that when I started sewing, they would stay fairly straight.

This was actually a lot simpler than I had expected it to be! It was certainly a good idea to tie the ends down where they needed to be. It kept the material in line and made it easier to sew :)

I did end up sewing the material back onto itself, though... Oops! But... With a small trim of the material at the bottom (after 'hemming' it) and along the sides, the first half of the transformed jeans were finished!! Yay!!

Now to start on the second half... :)

I felt confident with what I needed to do, so I thought this side would be a lot easier... Because there was no pocket in the middle, it was just a long opening. That sounds easier, right? I sewed together the two rectangles of fabric first, then hand sewed them onto the jeans, making sure that where the floral material starts, it starts opening wider to make another 12cm flare... Lots of measuring, lots of hand stitching, and lots of double and triple checking absolutely everything...

Well... Despite my apparent confidence, this side was both easier and harder. There was more 'pull' on the jeans trying to feed them through the sewing machine, and because I had to stop half way and start from the other side, I accidentally pinched together a bit of the jeans in the middle. It all turned out okay, though... I'm not sure what I'd do differently if I needed to do it again... But, it's done and I'm so pleased I finally did something with these 'dust collectors'! And. I now have a new pair of jeans that actually fit me... Yay!!

And now that I know (to a given degree) how to use a sewing machine,
I'm inspired to try a whole list of new sewing projects ;)


  1. Well done!. They look really good. Have you worn them out and about yet?
    I refashioned some old jeans this week too, but not into something wearable. I cut the bottom 30cms off and used it to redecorate a tomato tin into a garbage bin! I still have the top section left to do something else with now...

  2. First of all where did you get that font from? Love it. I am most impressed with the jeans. I'm planning to follow you regularly. I think I could learn a lot. Apart from that - you are just an inspiration. - Asta x

    1. Hi Asta! So glad you've been enjoying my posts! :)

      The font I use is called "Coming Soon". I found it in the Advanced Blogger Template Designer.. Hope this helps? I often wonder if it's tricky to determine what's an 'L' and what's an Exclamation Mark though... !! :)