Monday, May 14, 2012

Refashion: Skinny Jeans

I have been trying to figure out what to blog about next and I have had lots of ideas, but no time to actually make them fruitful. But now with school being out and no job in sight, I have a lot of empty time on my hands. Instead of continuing to waste it away, I have decided to try my hand at some tutorials of the projects I have been doing lately. I've never tried this before, so let me know if anything is unclear or you have any questions. Well, here it goes!...

My little sister has always had the problem of finding skinny jeans that fit her. She is a very tall girl, so they are usually too short. So why not take old flare jeans and fix them up? 

{I ended up doing a couple of pairs of jeans for my sister, so the pictures are from multiple fixes--hence the different shades of jean.}

Step One: Put on your jeans inside out and pinch the sides to your leg to how skinny you want them. Only do this to one leg of your jeans for now. Just make sure it feels comfortable! 

One thing you might want to consider is whether or not your jeans have a decorative or thicker seam on the outside or inside edge. If this is so, only take in the side that does not have the decorative edge. If you take in the decorative edge side, you will be able to see where your stitching ends and the original seam starts and you won't have as clean of a finish. 

{*Note: The pinning is a whole lot easier to do with someone else's help! I have also seen this part done by laying a pair of skinny jeans on top of the ones you want to fix and pinning along the edges, but I found this method to be unreliable and harder to get a perfect fit.}

Once one leg is pinned, carefully take off your jeans, no one likes to get poked!

Step Two: Before you start sewing your jeans, make sure to get a jean or heavy duty needle for your sewing machine. A regular needle might still work, but it will be harder to sew through the thicker parts of the fabric and you might get your machine jammed or break a needle. 

Once you have your new needle, starts sewing the sides of your jeans where you pinned them. Make sure you pull the fabric tight against the original seam and that the fabric lays flat. 

Your finished stitching should look something like the above pictures depending on how tapered you want the leg to be. Turn your pants inside out and try them on to make sure you like the fit of the pant leg. If you need to make any adjustments, do so now because your first leg will become the templete for the other leg. 

Step Three: Once you have one leg sewed up to your liking, line it up with the other pant leg with the outside seam. Make sure it lies flat and that the bottom of the pant leg matches up. 

{*Note: This works best if you work one side of the pant leg at a time because there will be some bulk in the middle that will not lie flat if you line up both sides at the same time.}

Step Four: Once you have the pant legs lined up, pull back the stitched side to reveal the unaltered side and pin it to match up with the other leg. Do this up and down each side of the pant leg. Now you are ready to stitch up the other pant leg like you did the first. 

Once both legs are stitched up, try on your pants right side out and determine if both legs feel the same in tightness. If not, fix any problem areas and try them on again. 

Step Five: When you are satisfied with the fit of both pant legs, finish off your seams with a zig zag stitch and cut off the excess fabric or serge the edge to keep the fabric from fraying too much in the wash. 

Step Six: Enjoy your new pair of custom fitted skinny jeans! This tested method has worked wonders for three pairs of my sisters pants and one pair of thrifted colored jeans I found at Savers that needed some love as well. {Sorry I don't have a before picture. I'll be better next time!}

Well, I hope this tutorial was helpful and that you have lots of success in your skinny jean making endeavors! Hopefully this will be the first of many tutorials and DIY projects from the meanderings of my bored to death mind! :)


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