Sunday, December 9, 2012

Sewing jeans resources

Not a lot happening on the jeans scene these days. That project ground to an abrupt halt due to two problems. Problem #1: the stretch factor. My jeans are made of stretch denim. [I probably should have mentioned that at the beginning. The pair of jeans I deconstructed to create a pattern was made of stretch fabric, and so too will be my self-made pair. Do not try to take a pair of non-stretch jeans and make a pattern that you will use with stretch fabric. That will probably not work so great. And don't do the reverse either. That would really be disastrous.] Anywho, I had done a lot of the construction, the pockets were looking cool, the fit was a little wonky but I had fixed it, I was getting pretty excited about having some awesome jeans to wear... AND THEN! Topstitching was my downfall. First, I had to play around a lot with the tension settings to get topstitching to work at all. (I'm using a proper jeans topstitching thread on top, and regular thread in the bobbin.) Unless I set the upper tension to be quite high, I would end up with big messy loops of thread underneath. "Okay, fine," says I, "I will use this wonky tension setting." All goes well for topstitching the pockets. When it came time to topstitch on the back yoke, however, it was not fine at all. The topstitching stretched out my fabric every time. I messed with the tension, but that only created the messy thread loops again. I tried putting some twill tape under the seam, thinking that might prevent the stretch - not really. Plus, I don't really think that's a legit method for stretch jeans since I want some stretch after they are completed. I despaired. Then I googled, and I found this discussion on

Internet seamstresses are the best. There's so much great info out there. If you are having problems topstitching your stretch denim, definitely check out this thread. Some things they recommend:
  • lightening the presser foot pressure (sadly, not an option on my machine)
  • using a tear-away or water soluble stabilizer
  • using a longer stitch length
  • using a presser foot with a groove on the bottom
  • using a walking foot
I think the walking foot is the golden ticket. Unfortunately, they can be quite pricey, so I'm hoping Santa  can help me out. For now, the jeans will have to wait. It's for the best, since it's high time I got started on sewing presents for other people. I thought, however, that I would collect some sewing jeans resources for people to investigate if they are going through similar struggles.

I could post a series of links, but instead I decided to just do a Pinterest board, which is more visually appealing and easier to add links to later on. You can even add stuff to it if you want, although you have to email me first so I can add you. Gah! Online learning communities make me feel so warm and fuzzy - how about you?

1 comment:

  1. hey, cool! I signed up for Pinterest a while back but I still don't know what it is or how to use it... just that it's an important social media thing and I should get on that. So I think I will now, doesn't look too hard! I like your board anyway :)