Despite my inclination to plunge headlong into another coat—my long-neglected Lady Grey, say (I bought hair canvas! I bought hair canvas!)—I need to do some practical sewing. My favourite pair of Jalie jeans has developed some issues (mostly due to my own shoddy construction decisions… the sort of thing, it appears, I have to learn for myself, because no amount of good advice seems to get through my thick skull), rendering them currently unwearable, though a bit of mending should get them back in the rotation. Am I the only one who’d rather make a whole new pair of pants than sew a belt-loop back on? Well, that and the pockets (which I made out of cotton from an old duvet I’d retired because of all the holes it was developing… stupid, stupid) are full of holes, which is causing stress in the pocket topstitching, which has broken some of the topstitching threads… so yeah, they are in some trouble. Not to the point of being unwearable (at least once I get the belt loop sewn back on… this is why you attach them with zigzag bars, not just straight stitch). For those of you who weren’t around back in the summer when I began my Great Jeans Odyssey, my pattern of choice is the infamous Jalie 2908, altered based on becca a’s instructions into a low-rise, straight-legged jean and tweaked for maximal skinniness.
Anyway, yesterday I laid out my remaining length of black stretch denim. Apparently I had enough left for two pairs of pants, instead of just the one I’d thought. 3 pairs of pants from 4m of fabric, not bad. If, y’know, I needed three pairs of black jeans… but anyway. I cut merrily away, even remembering to undo my disastrous alteration of last summer.
I made some construction breakthroughs. I “fused” washaway stabilizer to the wrong sides of the pockets so they wouldn’t stretch out when I did the embroidery on them. I’m really happy about this… not only does it keep the pocket stable, when you fold the sides under and press them, it melts just enough to really grip the edges in place, so they don’t pop up! And unlike the interfacing I’ve used before, they’ll wash away so that when I finally wear my pants the pockets can stretch with the rest of them! And it didn’t even stick to the iron, which was my main fear.
I remembered to sew the yoke pieces on in the back before the centre seam. I did my topstitching in a regular red thread, using my triple-stitch (the straight stretch stitch) like I did in Tyo’s jeans. It looks great! So much more relaxing than wrestling with the topstitching thread, and I can use the same thread for constructing the seams, plus it slows the machine right down, which is good for topstitching (my Janome does not like to go slow, normally)
And then… I realized… I had sewn the yoke pieces on the wrong sides. The narrow ends were in the CB, the wide ends at the sides.
I had to pick out… two rows of stretch topstitching, the regular stitching, AND my triple-zig-zag seam finish. Yes, I was being all fancy and finishing my seams for once!
This kinda set me back.
then, having recovered from that, I went merrily on my way starting the fly construction…
And forgot that I need to attach the front pockets, first, since I’ve drafted pocket extensions that run into the fly. This makes for a nice, smooth finish on the front of the jeans and helps stabilize the fly… but only works if I actually remember to do it *before* I sew up the CF. So now I’m on the fence whether to rip that (probably only the basting where the fly opening will be, and a single bit of topstitching, need to come out) or just cut off the pocket extensions. Grrr.
This is why we follow instructions, /sigh.
Tyo’s coat continues to elude photography, mostly because with the grey weather we’ve been having, by the time she gets home from school the light’s already going. Hopefully we can get some good ones on the weekend. The sleeves are a real problem, though. With a sweater underneath, she can’t even bend her arms enough to button the thing closed. I’m going to have to open it up and pull out a layer or two in there. *headdesk*
On the up-side, it was -20 this morning and my coat performed adequately, at least for walking the kids to the bus stop. I was getting a mite cold by the time I got home, but nothing that long-johns and a proper hat (I just had my sweater hood up, silly me) wouldn’t've fixed. So I think it will be adequate, at least. The next test, of course, will have to be wind chill.
I still want a winter coat that’s both stylish and -50C-worthy. I have a feeling it’s going to take a) a less fitted style, b) a lot of research into materials, and c)more money. Not that this one was cheap, by the way.
In other news, I splurged and took my long-ailing serger in to get serviced (finally… it’s been about two years). The guy at the sewing-machine place confirmed my thought that the problem is the timing, and hopefully nothing else is wrong with it. It still runs fine… the loops just don’t form.
So in a couple of weeks I may have a serger again! Yay!