Jeans Toile from Hell

There’s always one isn’t there? One garment that dedicates itself unrelentingly to showing you up.

I’ll draw a veil over most of the seam ripper moments – the times I forgot what seam allowance I’d used on the pattern and substituted a different one, the forgetting completely to attach the yoke to the back and wondering why the back leg was coming out shorter than the front, cutting the waistband a wee bit short and the zip guard a wee bit wide,  that sort of thing.

Yet why did my inspiration to top stitch in mink brown look so perfect in the sample and utter cr*p on the front pockets ? And why then did the double thread mink brown resist plain old ripping out, and the stitches nestle firmly into the twill, needing removing surgically, stitch by blasted stitch? And especially, why, why didn’t I see the bright red blobs of melted ironing board blanket on the sole plate until I’d slammed the iron down on the RS of the front crotch seam?

I should have known. The fabric was just not meant to be. Here it is, demonstrating its wonkyness.

Wonky Grained Denim

Husband got shanghaied into helping to straighten it. I used it when the angle of distortion had about halved, but it’s a heavy unweildly quality I might struggle to wear.

This toile (last post) has a waistband on now and is doing home on the range service.

Wearable Jeans Toile

I made some alterations to the pattern before cracking out the natural denim, to get a bigger front waist and reduce straining at front high hip. Usually, I need to take fabric out of the back seam, lowering the waistband in the back. I could see the tell tale folds in the back legs, but with the part above the hip not fitting well I couldn’t see how much to change it.

I  let a bit more into the front pattern.

Adjust Waist on Jeans

The extension for the fly is on the left and the pocket curve on the right in this photo. It’s plus  1 cm at the CF, shifting the fly extension over, and 1cm by the pocket, where the red x’s are.

I made minor adjustments to the crotch seam, lowering it slightly, by about 0.7 cms.

Here’s the result after a couple of hours scraping at melted red blobs with a fingernail.

Jeans toile

The good news is that the waist now fits brilliantly. I’ve drafted a shaped waistband, this is pure comfort.

Less super – the legs are a smidge baggy, and I do indeed need my usual half inch taken at back waist, to lift them up.

Back Sag

You might spot the tell tale back leg sag in that shot. Here’s one that shows where the fabric wants to fold on itself under the waistband.


You can also see there that though the waist fits like a glove, there’s still an element of strain about three inches down in the front, where the carbs roost.

This from the the comprehensive wrinkle guide in ‘Fitting and Pattern Alteration’ by Liechty, Pottberg and Rasband is the remedy for the saggy legs.



Slice some out of the back height so that the hip line grain sits on a horizontal, and the wrinkles should go.











About jay

I design and draft patterns
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3 Responses to Jeans Toile from Hell

  1. maryfunt says:

    Some projects just are more resistant than others. They are looking better and better.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. mrsmole says:

    Love your phrase, “where the carbs roost”!!! Aren’t women the most amazing creatures? We can pack fat anywhere we can…high hip, low hip, front thighs, back butt…so diverse!!! Men can only do it in their belly…and then they all get flat butts in the end…hooray for females and their ever-changing forms! Your side photos shows everyone what went wrong and how to fix it…perfect! Good luck with the perfecting !!!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Still giggling – I have many ‘roosting Carr’s 😂. Whatever problems you have solved so far, and whatever you feel are still there – can you honestly imagine you could but a better fit even if you spent £££££?
    Enjoy your jeans – and the compliments.


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