Sunday, 11 September 2011

and from the ashes a skirt is reborn OR delicious sorbets

Wait, what’s this? What are you doing inside at your computer on this beautiful summer day? Summer days are coming to an end! You should be outside, enjoying delicious sorbet with your friends!

 Delicious blackcurrant and lemon sorbet from Havres-Aux-Glaces, in Marché Jean-Talon.

Oh, you’re wallowing on your ruined pair of jeans, your very favourite ones that you were intending to wear as you enjoyed your delicious sorbet? Well stop crying dear, and go get your sewing machine! I’ve got the solution!

But if you don’t have a sewing machine, get over yourself and get out there, sheesh.

Making a Skirt out of Jeans


-Sewing Machine
-Seam ripper
-Thread! A bobbin close in color to your jeans’ fabric, and another as close as possible to the topstitching.
-Jeans needle, especially for the topstitching. You can use a needle for heavy fabric if you don't have jeans needle hanging around. Regular needle tend to break when sewing jeans.

A note on threads: You’ll notice your regular thread may not be as thick as the topstitching on your jeans. You can either choose to ignore this, like I did, and just use some thread you already have hanging around. If you do decide to go and buy thread, try to get specifically marked jeans thread. If they don’t have the color you need, Heavy Duty thread is an excellent alternative.

If you have a domestic machine, that thread can only go through the needle: if you put it in the bobbin you’re messing with your machine’s tension and timing, and you don’t mess with it. With an industrial machine, the bigger thread goes in the bobbin and the regular thread through the needle.

First step: Cutting!

Start by cutting your jeans a little shorter. You don’t want the full length of them encumbering your work. Unless you add fabric, you sew a vent, or your jeans were baggy to begin with, you won’t able to make a knee-length skirt. The jeans I’m using were well-fitted but never skinny, and mid-thigh is the longest possible before my legs are restricted.

Now cut along the inseam, and completely remove the seam. I guess you can take it out if you hate yourself, but it’s a lot of pain for little gain.

Second step: Ripping

Grab your seam ripper and rip through the front and back seams. I recommend stopping just shy of the fly in the front, and about an inch higher in the back.

Third step: Pinning!

Turn you jeanskirt hybrid inside out and slip it on. Using the help of a friend or your incredible flexibility, pin the flaps together, making as straight a line as possible.

Fourth step: Sewing!

Sew along that line. Try it on to check it out.

Once that’s done, use your overlock to finish neatly the seam, or your zigzag stitch, or your pinking shears. Just… do something to avoid fraying. Yes, of course you can cut away the excess now.

Get your iron, and press the seams down.

Fifth step: Topstitching!

Topstitching sucks unless you’re creepy or enjoying quilting, which is more or less the same. In the industry, they use double needles to make their life easier. Double needles are available for domestic machines too, but if you don’t have one you can suck it up and learn to sew parallel lines.
With your topstitching thread, you continue the topstitching on the front and back seams.


Sixth step: Hemming!

Skirts or pants, hemming never goes away.

 Now that a skirt has reborn out of your ruined jeans, you can either burn the remains or throw them out. I personally like to keep them in hope I’ll find a use for rectangles of denim one day. If that day comes I shall inform you.

Well, what are you waiting for? Put on your skirt and go enjoy delicious sorbet!

If you’ll excuse me, I’ll go work on a quilt while dreaming of wonderful homemade ice cream sundaes.

 More homemade than that, we grew the peanuts ourselves.

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