Ash Jeans

I’ve been wanting to make another pair of jeans for a while but since I’ve been struggling so much with fit on my jeans I’ve been putting it off. Previously I’ve made three pairs of Closet Case Patterns Ginger Jeans (a high waisted pair, a low rise pair with grey topstitching, and a low rise pair with gold topstitching) and one pair of Ginger Jean Shorts. My fit has definitely improved with each version but there are still issues. I decided to switch it up and this time make the Ash Jeans by Megan Nielsen in the Robert Kaufman Super Stretch Denim. I figured that the super stretchy fabric that the ash jeans calls for would be more forgiving than the thicker cone mills denim that I used for my second and third pairs for Ginger Jeans.

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Based on my measurements I cut out a size 28 at the waist and graded out to a size 29 at the hips. Instead of just removing length from the bottom of the pants I added two lengthen and shorten lines, one above and one below the knee. I shortened by 1” in each spot for a total of 2 inches shorter. As I was cutting out I also cut 2 Inches off the bottom of the legs because I messed up the cutting layout and had to do that to get all the pieces to fit. When I did the baste fit I had a little extra room at the waist. I took the side seams in 3/8” at the waist tapered to nothing at the hips. 3/8″ doesn’t seem like a lot but since it takes off from the front and back piece on the left and right side it ended up removing a total of 1 1/2” all the way around. Before hemming them I removed an additional 1” of length from the bottom for a total of shortening the pants by 5 inches. Next time I’ll distribute that to the lengthen and shorten lines that I added which will make the pants a little closer fitting at the ankle.

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This time I used the Guterman Mara Topstitching Thread which is a lighter weight than the topstitching thread from JoAnn’s that I’ve used in the past. It is definitely more subtle than the heavier topstitching thread. I’m not sure if it was the topstitching thread or that this denim that was less bulky than my previous denims or the fact that this is now my 5th time making jeans but while I was making these I kept thinking that making jeans was SO MUCH EASIER that I remembered. I would definitely recommend the Robert Kaufman Super Stretch Denim with the Guterman Mara Thread for anyone making their first pair of jeans!

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Overall my first pair of Ash Jeans fits way better than my first pair of Ginger Jeans. I’m not sure at this point if I’ll try making the mid-rise Gingers next or make another pair of Ash Jeans next. For either pair I think I need to remove just a little room from the center crotch seam. I may also look in to weather there is anything I can do to reduce the drag lines on the back thigh though I know there is no way to get rid of them completely.

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Also – I got this shirt at a thrift store when I was in college and I think it would be super easy to hack a boxy top pattern to have gathers at the shoulders like this one

Tania Culottes and Nettie Bodysuit

I made the Tania culottes by Megan Nielsen. This is my first Megan Nielsen make. I was looking for something that would be good to take while traveling but still be cute. I like the idea of culottes because I often sit crosslegged even in chairs. I read some other blogs where other people ended up using version A but then cut the length of a size or two up from their actual size and those lengths looked good to me. I didn’t want a super short skirt because I want to be somewhat modest while traveling.

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The only other modification that I wish that I had made would be to add pockets. I had already cut everything out when I realized that there were no pockets. Megan Nielsen does have a tutorial for adding pockets to the mini Tania culottes and it would be the same for the adult version. I could have still added pockets after I had cut it out but I wasn’t really sure about the side seam zipper with the pockets and I just wanted to get sewing so I skipped it.

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I bought this fabric a while back from the imaginegnats shop. I love florals but don’t like anything too loud so this fabric was perfect. I bought two yards without having a real plan. This pattern actually calls for two and a half yards of fabric but I cut on a single layer (huge space saver!) and I also cut some of the pieces upside down since these flowers don’t have a direction.

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This actually was my first time working with Rayon fabric. Since it shifts and grows quite a bit I was a little concerned but I just cut it single layer with a rotary cutter and didn’t have much of an issue. I stay stitched the waist seam allowance to try to prevent the fabric from getting out of shape there. Other than that everything came together relatively smoothly. Some of the pieces still grew a bit but not enough to make a difference.

I’m also wearing these with my second Close Case Files Nettie bodysuit! This version is a 3/4 length sleeve with the mid- back and scoop front. I made this out of an art gallery knit from also from imaginegnats.

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I love the mid-back since it feels a bit risque and interesting but not at all inappropriate. I again added the snap crotch but this time I used some silk that I’ve been holding on to in the hopes of making it in to a True Bias Sutton Blouse. I added the built in bra for this version but instead of attaching the front of the bra to the back I added a back bra piece which I connected to the front. This ended up coming down to the bottom of my rib cage so I cut the elastic off and tried again. The second time worked really well.

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I also shortened this a bit more than my first version and ended up shortening the bottom pieces before adding the snap crotch for a better fit. Ultimately though I just need to figure out the sway back adjustment. I also think there is probably something I can still do in the shoulders since they feel a bit like they are floating away from the skin when you really want them to be skin-tight. For my next version I think I’ll try taking out some volume at the shoulders.