01 January 2014

BWOF 11-2009-124 (skinny jeans): Complete

I'm still catching up with reviewing two last-minute makes from 2013.  This pair of skinny jeans was NOT supposed to happen.  Nevertheless, I love them!

Back Story
Two or three years ago, I ordered a few pieces of stretch denim from Fabric.com.  One piece was WAY too stretchy (50% across the grain) for my liking.  I don't know why I decided to keep it, but I did.  Rather than use it for another project, I relegated it to the muslin stash.

A few days (weeks...months?) passed and I decided to try make the Burda World of Fashion magazine pattern pictured below.  I had already made a couple of pairs of jeans and thought I'd give this pattern a try.  Y'all know I am the muslin queen, so I decided to use my newly purchased stretchy denim to test out the pattern.

So here I am just a-tracin' and a-alterin' and a-cuttin' and a-not-paying-attention-to-what-I-was-doin'.  Still new to BWOF magazine patterns and the fact that they do not have seam or hem allowances, I cut out every major piece with nary a seam allowance.  Anywhere.  At.  All.  Of course, I didn't realize this until I started constructing the muslin.  Grrrr...

[insert every swear word known to man]

Frustrated and annoyed with my colossal error, I stashed this heap of shame in a box and hid it in my furnace room.  Out of sight, out of mind.

Fast forward to this past week 
In looking for another muslin, I came across the box of shame and surveyed the pieces.  I decided to proceed with making the muslin and use 1/4" seam allowances.  I figured there was no sense in letting the fabric go to waste.  Even if it doesn't fit, I can learn something about sizing.  Right?

As I put the pieces together, I started to REALLY like the fabric.  I'm not a fan of the stretchiness, but I love weight of the fabric and its deep, dark blue color.  After basting everything together and trying it on, I was pleased to find that the pants were TOO BIG!  Woo!

I wasn't a fan of how the godets looked as I felt they didn't give enough flair.  When I looked at the pattern more carefully, I discovered that there were supposed to be four per leg; I only had two.  D'oh.

Anyway.  I ditched the godets and unpicked every stitch and sewed it 'for real' this time.   I never thought I had the figure for skinny jeans.  I have a full bust, lot of trunk junk, muscular thighs, and I'm only 5 feet tall.  I don't know what possessed me to keep going with this project, but I am glad I did. 

This particular pattern is one of Burda's "Take One, Make Four" patterns.  It uses the same 'block' and includes various extras for a new look.  Without the godets, you are making the basic straight-legged pant.  Here are the other variations (126 and 127, respectively):

Fabric & Notions
  • 2 yards of stretch denim
  • stretch fusible interfacing for the waistband
  • 7" nylon zipper
  • machine, serger, and thread
Fitting & Alterations

I started with a size 44 and removed four inches of length.  That's it.  I didn't do anything else because this was supposed to be a muslin.  I omitted the side seam pockets - these never look good on me.  On the next pair, I will make a 1/2" or 3/4" full seat adjustment on the back and shorten above the knee 1 - 1.5 inches.  I'll add the extra length back below the knee.  I have a bunch of fabric pooling in the mid thigh area and I think it's because this area is too long for my height.


The front and back princess seams were finished on the serger first, stitched together, and then pressed open.  The front and back crotch seams as well as the side seams were stitched first and then serged together.  I took a seam allowance somewhere between 3/8 and 1/2 inches. 

I had to refer to the pattern markings a few times since the front and back side pieces are similarly shaped.  When I make this again, I will definitely take the time to add enough markings.


The stretch of the fabric TOTALLY saved this project.  I love this pair of jeans.  I can see this paired with so many different tops and jackets.   I can add this to my completed garments of 2013.  Woo woo!  In these pictures, I'm wearing the jeans with another version of Simplicity 2560 - also completed a couple of weeks ago.


I wore the jeans pretty much all day yesterday and found that they "grew" over time.  They were not nearly as close-fitting as in the pictures above.  While I still like them and will wear them often, my original preference of denim with minimal stretch still stands!

Up next:  the review that was supposed to happen days ago.  Hah.  

Happy new year everyone!



  1. You are such a jean brave girl! Very nice job too.

  2. They look great! I also hate it when garments grow during the day.

  3. I am really pleased that these worked out for you :-)

  4. Great result, I don't like fabric that grows during the day either (a pair of linen trousers with a bit of lycra come to my mind, unwearable after 4-5 hours).
    Have a wonderful 2014!

  5. Happy New Year, L! I applaud you... pants never work out well for me, so I give you big-time-credit for overcoming the obstacles and ending up with a great pair of pants!

  6. Trousers that grow are the worst, especially if you forget they do it and wear them to go out for the day. I almost flashed a whole town. :-(

  7. Well done for salvaging a totally wearable pair of jeans from a couple of disasters. "Never let the wretched thing (insert garment here) beat you" is my motto. Happy New Year.

  8. You look great in skinny jeans! After talking with you at the Sewing Expo and reading your jeans posts, I am setting a goal to make a pair of jeans in 2014. I have been a little squeamish about setting goals, but I am inspired. Keep the tips coming.


Thanks for commenting! I appreciate and read them all - even if I can not personally respond.


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