Ginger Jeans – My first memade pair

I have purchased all materials, patterns, workshops, etc. myself. All opinions are my own.

During the colder months, I’m a serial jeans-wearer. I get cold easily, so a pair of jeans and a thick sweater are my outfit of choice for a good part of the year. So of course I had been itching to make my first pair of jeans! The Ginger Jeans were an obvious choice, because of the rave reviews and tons of makes in the community. I like the rise, classic jeans details and stovepipe leg shape.

I had bought the “Sew your dream jeans” online class from Closet Case Patterns during a sale late last year. It includes the Midrise Ginger Jeans pattern. The class was pretty helpful. It walks you through the entire construction process, plus some extras like fabric selection and prep. I also like being able to watch someone doing the things I hadn’t done before, like installing the jeans button and rivets.

Sizing & Fitting Ginger Jeans

Before cutting out my fabric, I selected a size based on the size chart. I also confirmed it by measuring the pattern pieces in a few spots (hip, mid-thigh and calf). I settled on a size 8, even though it wasn’t a perfect fit in every spot. Heather Lou’s (of Closet Case Patterns) advises this. She recommends choosing an in-between size or sizing down if you’re in between a couple of sizes. The stretchy fabric can usually accommodate the differences.

I then cut out my fabric and basted the Ginger Jeans together for a fitting. Heather Lou also recommends basting on the waistband before trying on the jeans, so I did that as well. To my amazement, the jeans were a great fit without any adjustments other than lengthening the leg. I wore the jeans for a few hours before taking them apart to test the fit. Then I pressed the pieces and started the construction for real.

Sewing Up My Ginger Jeans

The back of my Ginger Jeans with a custom faux leather label

Next time, I’ll move the back pockets a bit lower. I didn’t want to baste them on and then adjust once the jeans were mostly done, because I was worried that it would be difficult to get beautiful topstitching once the outseams were sewn together.

I went out of order a bit when constructing the waistband. Instead of finishing the waistband and then adding on the belt loops, I sandwiched the tops of the belt loops between the waistband and its facing. It gives a very clean finish, but of course you have to position the belt loops before attaching the waistband, which is tricky. I tried my best to measure and position them where they should be. Sadly, two of the placements ended up being off by about 1cm. It should be possible to attach the waistband, then position the belt loops and only then attach the waistband facing, so I’ll give that a go next time.

Attaching the pocket facing to the pocket stay for my Ginger Jeans

Speaking of belt loops, I got myself one of those belt loop attachments for my coverstitch machine and using it was such a breeze! I wound a bit of my topstitching thread onto a bobbin and used a wide coverstitch to create the belt loops. The result was very professional-looking and even. I definitely recommend this technique if you have a coverstitch machine. A also used the coverstitch machine to attach the pocket facings to the pocket bags. I did this instead of serging the raw edge of the facing and then straight-stitching it to the pocket bag.

Project Details

Denim: Stonewashed stretch denim from Stoffe Zanderino
Lining: yarn-dyed cotton poplin from a local store
Topstitching thread: Coats Epic topstitching thread size 50 in color 02362 from Der Rote Faden. I’m really pleased with the weight/thickness of this thread for topstitching.
Hardware (zipper, jeans button, rivets and bonus label): Closet Case Patterns
Back Patch: Dortex faux leather

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