Friday, October 26, 2018

Denim Days; Jean Jackets

Hello Readers. I found a couple jean jackets a clothes swap recently and they will be the last post in this denim series. I gave this first jacket a glitzy upgrade with bits of trim to dress it up.

The jacket fit well but I decided to shorten the sleeves to a 3/4 length just for fun. I started adding trim and ribbon to the jacket. I didn't have a real plan. I put the trim where it seemed to fit best. I put some at the waist, collar, front panels, and in the back. I also tapered the sleeves a bit too.

I kept adding trim until I was afraid I would start to look like a Las Vegas show girl if I didn't stop. This was a fun sewing project because it cleared out some trim from the scrap collection and there was no wrong way to do it. Anything was OK. I just kept stitching until I felt done.

*****     JACKET TWO     *****

This second jacket was basic and simple in a good way. It would go with anything and everything. It was almost perfect. I just wanted to shorten those really long sleeves. Why were the sleeves so long? (Why are my arms so short?) If I rolled up the sleeves they will be very bulky. I really need to shorten them so I can wear this jacket.

I wanted to keep that original cuff but I also needed to remove some of that fabric. I unpicked the stitches and took the cuff off. I removed about 3 inches of fabric from the sleeve and then I reattached the cuff.

I used heavy gold thread made for jeans so the stitching would match the rest of the jacket. This thread made the jacket look like it had always been the way I fixed it. It isn't expensive but it it so thick, you get less of it on the spool. I think it's worth it though.

I can now wear this jacket and use my hands too. It sounds like a small issue but it is annoying when your arms are never long enough.

Thanks for reading along, now go make something fun for yourself.

*Year end update- I had so much fun with these jackets. The ribbon jacket can dress up anything and the plain one goes with anything.

Wednesday, October 24, 2018

Denim Days; Much Too Distressed

Hello Readers. I was overly distressed. Well, my jeans were overly distressed. It was my own fault. I am the one who distressed them.

I loved these pink jeans and those rips and holes were great in hot summer weather. They were like built in air conditioning. It is getting colder and colder so the holes were not nice to have anymore. Maybe I got a little over-enthusiastic with my distressing, I am paying forr it now.  I could stop wearing them until spring comes... but I don't want to.

I decided to line the inside of the jeans behind all the holes and stitch them closed. At least I wanted to try and close the holes the best I could. I chose this brown fabric because it had some pink in it and it was already in my sewing stash. (Using scraps is free!)

 I put the brown fabric into the leg of the jeans and stitched the holes with a zigzag stitch. Some of the holes closed and some of the holes are a little open to let the brown floral fabric show a little. I didn't try to make it perfect, distressed jeans have a messy lived-in look. I didn't want to lose that.

 This is the view from the inside of the jeans after I was done with my sewing. It looks pretty crazy.

I cut off the excess material. It is still a little crazy looking but no one will see that when I am wearing the jeans. 

  The view  from the outside is distressed but the holes are closed. (Is it just me or does the leg on the right look like a face. A sleeping face. Weird.)

I like the closed up holes. The jeans still look distressed. I like that look. I was warmer too, that was my main goal.

*****     BONUS TRACK     *****

Do you have any boot cut jeans in your closet that you haven't worn in a while because they seem too wide at the bottom of the legs? Mine felt like bell-bottoms compared to my skinny jeans.

I wanted to taper the jeans just a little so they were more of a straight leg fit. 

I made them a pinch smaller from the knees down. It was simple but made a big difference.

 Thanks for reading along, now go make something fun for yourself.

*Year end update- These jeans are both worn often, but the pink jeans are 100% my favorites.

Friday, October 19, 2018

Denim Days; Miss Green Jeans

Hello Readers. It's time for some green jeans. (Does anyone remember Mr. Green Jeans from the Captain Kangaroo TV show? It was a long time ago.) I didn't have any green jeans so I thought these would be a great for fall.

These green jeans were too big and too long but they were soft and stretchy. They would be very comfortable. The heavy weight denim would be nice too. It is getting cold out there.

I took in the sides by sewing new side seams. This let me make them just the right size for me. I also shortened them to fit my short legs. This was an easy sewing project, so I had time to make a shirt, right?

*****     PART 2 TRYING TO MAKE A SHIRT     *****

I had some old t-shirts that have been sitting around. I thought the colors were good for fall. The shirts themselves were not pretty or cute in any way. I was going to cut them up and use them for parts.

This was my first attempt at a raglan style shirt. I wanted to use the body of a white shirt and the sleeves of the brown shirt. (Spoiler alert: It did not turn out well at all.)

For real y'all, this was a disaster. The under-arms were way too tight and uncomfortable. I didn't even finish sewing the sleeves together. Clearly I measured wrong and the result was a really awful fitting shirt.

 *****    SECOND ATTEMPT  AT A SHIRT   *****

I started with a plain white t-shirt. I thought I could add some trim to this shirt and call it a day.

 I cut the bottom hem off the green shirt.

I also cut the lower hem off the brown shirt too. 

I decided to stitch the trim onto the sleeves to add a little interest. I also added some to the front pocket too. It was super simple and easy. That was all I was capable of on this day.

This is it for today. The second shirt turned out fine, it isn't an exciting outfit but I could wear it comfortably. I counted it as a small win since it was wearable.

Thanks for reading along, now go make something fun for yourself.

*Year end update- This wasn't a very exciting shirt but the pants are worn often to work. They are more useful than exciting, but that's OK.

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Denim Days; The Denim Suit Jacket

Hello Readers. I love finding unusual items like this jacket when I am thrifting. It is a fun and unique little jacket.

 This jacket was actually half of a suit. I refashioned the skirt about 3 years ago. I wasn't sure what I wanted to do with the jacket so it sat and waited patiently for me to make up my mind.

The jacket was fabulous but it was a little big and long on me. I also wasn't sure if the 3 big buttons suited me either. But it seemed like such a unique piece of denim, I wanted to try and wear it.

I decided to shorten the sleeves and shorten the body of the jacket. I love the print and hated to cut off the pockets, but I thought it would fit better as a short jacket.

 I swapped out the large buttons for 3 smaller buttons. They were all different but I thought they suited the jacket well. And I liked the mix of designs.

 I think the shorter length worked out well with this jacket. It seemed to fit much better. I also liked the special vibe this jacket had, I tried hard not to lose it. The blue and white designs on each side are still very visible, just a little shorter.

My mother-in-law liked it too.                       

Thanks for reading along, now go make something fun for yourself.

*Year end update- My dear mother-in-law enjoyed this little jacket.

Friday, October 12, 2018

Denim Days; The White Jacket

Hello Readers. I am on a denim binge. I found a great white denim jacket at a clothes swap this summer. I liked it but it was SO much stark white.  

I decided to play with the color a little. I had this bottle of "frost gray" dye from under the sink and wanted to try and get an ombre effect. I got my dye ready in a bucket and prepped my jacket for the dye.

I was going to dip the jacket in the dye a little bit at a time and let it soak in the dye for a few minutes. You can see the strange way I used hangers to lower the jacket. Every 10 minutes I added a new hanger so the jacket was deeper in the bucket. It took about an hour to finish completely.

Here is the color I got on the jacket. It seemed a little more light blue than the gray I thought I would get. I liked it though.

I rinsed and dried the jacket and it was ready to go. I didn't alter the size because I wanted to be able to layer it over sweaters and hoodies when it got colder.

Thanks for reading along, now go make something fun for yourself.

*Year end update- This great jacket became my daughter's great jacket.

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

Denim Days; The Skirt

Hello Readers. One way I get items to refashion for this blog is hand-me-downs. This denim skirt was a hand-me-down from someone I have known for ages. (Thanks C.G.)

This denim skirt was in great shape and had some stretch, which I love. It didn't really fit, so I needed to fix that. I really wanted a more high-waisted denim skirt. The skirt sat low on my hips.

I wanted to make new side seams but I didn't want to lose the belt loops. I used my seam ripper to remove the two loops that were going to be lost in the new side seams. I planned to reattach them when I was done.

This was a super simple way to change the size of the skirt. I was able to curve in at the waist and make the perfect high-waisted fit I could. The smaller waist made the skirt sit higher on my waist.
 *****     BONUS TRACK     *****

The weather changed and we had a little heatwave. So, I decided to fix up a tank top to go with the skirt.

 This tank fit well but the straps were too long and made the neckline too low. I cut the straps right at the shoulder seam. At first I was going to simply shorten them.

 But then I had an idea. I decided to tie the straps into loose knots and then reconnect the straps. I thought the knots would be an easy way to make the tank top more visually interesting and shorten them at the same time.

Here is a picture of actual sewing. I know, big deal.

Here are the skirt and the tank together. They were great on a hot humid day.

Thanks for reading along, now go make something fun for yourself.

*Year end update- This skirt is now a wardrobe staple. I love it.