Challenge: Make Another Pair of Jeans

In a previous post about the Sew Your Own Jeans retreat, I mentioned that the instructor, Lauren Taylor, challenged us to make a second pair of jeans within a week of finishing the workshop to solidify our learnings. At first, that overwhelmed me but, my classmates inspired me with their diligence. Molly made a lovely sweatshirt and Cindy made a skirt, shirt, AND sweatshirt DURING the workshop. I decided to move it and get to work.

The StyleMaker Fabrics shop is right on site where the workshop was held and it was frequently open so I could wander through for inspiration. Funny enough, I found intriguing denim on the website but couldn’t find it in the store. No worries, Michelle helped me find it in the denim section.

Pocket Fabric

Selecting the color of the thread for topstitching was much harder. Something bright and cheerful like pink or teal would stand out but also make all of my crooked sewing obvious. I wasn’t that brave or confident. Eventually, after much gnashing of teeth, I opted for a quietly daring red plum.

The pocket fabric was just a wild selection assisted by Michelle. Inspired by the fabric from the Lady McElroy Fashion Model lining of the Pickup Partner bag I designed for my mom, I was looking for images of stylized images of women and something radically different from the jeans fabric and this is definitely it!

KATM Hardware

The hardware is the same that we used at the Sew Your Own Jeans workshop. It is by Kylie and the Machine and the out-of-box experience is a pure delight. Everything inside is beautifully arranged and presented.

On the next to last day, after dinner, I went back to the sewing studio and laid out the pattern, and cut the pieces out. The next day, the final day of the workshop, after lunch, I went back to the sewing studio (along with Cindy and Molly) and assembled and sewed as far long of the pockets as I could before closing.

Front legs of jean viewed from wrong side. Shows pockets and zipper.
Zipper and pockets assembly

I missed Lauren’s challenge deadline of one week for the second pair of jeans because I traveled over the next three weeks. However, I was able to use a sewing machine in each location and I finished in about three weeks.

I will say that each machine had its own way of handling (or not) bar tacks. Something to consider when buying my next machine!

The final product is a joy to wear. They look great with a white shirt or jacket and fancy sandals for the summer. When winter arrives some black short boots will work great. And a lady’s riding jacket (with peplum) would look great too!

I have a much greater appreciation now for what it takes to make a pair of jeans. For me, it’s about a 15 to 20-hour project. Thank goodness for Lauren Taylor’s Sew Your Own Jeans workshop and her insistence on getting them done. That took a good 2 to 5 hours off of my overall time! Check out the resources below to get started on your own!