Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Ma’am, Step Away From the Jeans

Here is the first pair of jeans from the roll. And yes, they are incomplete.

All of the changes that were made to the original pattern, Simplicity 5517, worked until I got to the waistband. When DD #1 tried the jeans on, the center fronts of the band wouldn't match up. It was simply too small. The muslin had fit nicely. Discouraged, I let the jeans sit for a few days.

I finally asked her to try them on again and I made a new pattern piece. While making changes, I also trimmed ¼” off the top so the finished width is 1 5/8”. It fits and looks great on her.

However, topstitching that band has defeated me. Twice. The Bernina isn’t appreciative of the numerous layers on the front. Right where the zipper is, the feed dogs refuse to continue, even with encouragement and coaxing from the hand-wheel. The jeans have been set aside. Again.
I am confused as that machine plows through everything. And, there isn’t anything different with this pair...the denim isn’t any heavier, nor have I used a heavier interfacing. Same machine, same needles, same thread…

I’ll try again tomorrow.


  1. The only thing I can think of is to ask if you are using a denim needle? Perhaps it needs to be changed? My Bernina eats through denim, so I can't believe yours is having problems .. unless it needs a service or the needle is too old or too fine.

    BTW - love the use of different coloured top stitching thread. That must have taken you a while. Is daughter suitably grateful???

  2. LOVE the back pockets!! Jeans are challenging, but so fun. I think it's awesome that you are making them for your daughter.

  3. No, not a denim needle specifically, but a size 16. I looked in the drawer and I do have some Schmetz Jeans/Denim size 16 needles and some size 18 leather needles. Tomorrow, I'll experiment on scraps. I'm hoping it is a needle problem. The machine is otherwise working well. And, yes, my daughter is grateful. She enjoys the things I've been making for her. But, you know, I'm grateful as well - she bought the roll of denim!