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15 July 2014

Three things to avoid when adding a hem to jeans

Pretty jean turn ups using floral fabric with a split in the side

Or, 'When Thing Don't Work Out'

Yep, I've gone back to have another go at those pretty turn up hems that I talked about at the beginning of the month.  Last time, things didn't work out exactly as planned so armed with some new ideas I thought I'd revisit the idea.  Bad move.

I decided I wanted to not waste all that pretty material that I'd used last time.  So I painstakingly unpicked it all so that I could reuse it, then I came up with a plan to re-sew the hems but this time with a split in them, to allow for fat calves (ie: mine) to fit through them.

The plan was good and it worked pretty well I thought.  I managed to get a nice neat looking split and I even got a nice contrasting colour top-stitch going on which I think is quite fetching.

So it's all good right?  I re-used the pretty material and the hems worked out well?
Unfortunately, no.  The split works fine, but the small area above the split is as tight as ever.

Re-using the material was mistake number one.  Thinking about it, these jeans have a bit of stretch in them and the material I used doesn't.  What's worse is I used some interfacing to line the material.  A good plan for making it a little stronger for it's coming life as my new hem but a bad plan on the making it stretchy front.

Then there's the fact that I just didn't cut these jeans off in the right place.  That non-stretchy hemline is right on the fat part of my calf.  Not flattering and not practical it seems.  So there's mistake number two. I would have cut them longer but by the time I got around to tackling these hems a little part of the knee area had worn through too and so I was trying to solve two problems at once.


Close up of the hemline split detail

Pretty jean turn up attempt number three

Pretty rain drop material for the hem

Well, that obviously didn't go to plan but I wasn't too daunted yet as I still had my second pair of jean victims lined up for the pretty hem treatment.  For these ones I made the cut lower down, to avoid the fat calf problem.  I didn't use stretchy material but these jeans weren't stretchy and what's more they are a wider fit so I was reasonably confident that they would still be ok.

I picked out these pretty raindrops to use and I started with my third attempt.  You might be able to see from the photos but I didn't even get this attempt finished.  So what went wrong this time?

This time the jeans were just too darn baggy!  These were jeans that had quite a flare on them, that's why I didn't think they would be too tight, my thought had been that I would be cutting most of the flared part away so the turn up would just rest nice and loosely on the lower part of my leg.  Wrong!  Nope, even with a chunk cut off the bottom, these turn ups looked ridiculously flared out, only worse because it was in the middle of my calf.  That my friends, was mistake number three.

So I exited the sewing room in a fit of pique and although I've probably learnt enough to ensure I could make a decent pair of cute turn up hem jeans at some point in the future, right here and now I am pretty much done with that idea.

It's a shame as I do still want the end product but at the minute I'm out of victims to experiment on, so a natural break is called for and that's probably no bad thing!

S x




25 comments:

  1. Awww...that's too bad Sandra. But now you know (and so do we!) I'm sure you'll get it sorted out eventually. I want to give this idea a go myself - so a trip to the thrift store is in order!

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  2. I love that you went back to get them fixed. I would have just cut the legs off at an appropriate length (i.e. not bum skimmingly short) and made them into gardening shorts! Having said that if it hadn't worked out for me the first time I may well have chucked them in the back of the wardrobe and hoped never to see them again.

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  3. What a shame, as so frustrating when what is in your head doesn't translate to actually 'doing' .......Next time you will do it perfectly xx. (Lovely fabric)

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  4. Such a shame that it didn't work for you, Sandra, but no shame on you for you really did try your darndest. I'm sure we've all learned from your experience, so thank you and I really hope you achieve 'the look' with your next try! XoJoy

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  5. Ah, so sorry the capri split didn't work. Shorts? you could probably still put a pretty edging on them?

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  6. Absolutely frustrating!!!! It still is a brilliant and very pretty idea!!!! You'll work it out of that I am sure!!! Have a great week!!!
    Love
    AMarie xxx

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  7. You'll get there, I'm sure of it. Well done for keeping on trying. I'm always looking for ways of mending holes in jeans, so I'll look forward to seeing how you crack the problem. Hope you're having a good week Sandra. CJ xx

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  8. Sorry things didn't work out the way you hoped. I know how frustrating
    that can be when you have an idea in your head but can't bring it to
    life. How about doing a cute crochet edge instead? OK, maybe that's selfish. I've been wanting to try that on my own pants and thought maybe you could pave the way for me ;-)

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  9. You get an A for effort, and they look good just lying there! Too bad to waste that pretty material and your precious time. It's a wonderful idea. Wish you could make it work for you. www.scottys-place.blogspot.com

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  10. C'mon Goldilocks - the first were too tight, the second too loose...you know where this is going...;-) Chrissie xxx

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  11. How frustrating! All that time spent of something you can't wear...bummer. And you had chosen some really quite perfect fabrics too! Maybe you could treat yourself to that original pair you admired in the shop, to make yourself feel better? xx

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  12. Aww, sorry they both didn't work out! Such a pretty idea and I am sure you will figure it out!! ;) xo Heather

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  13. Yeah, I may have another go at some point, once I’ve had time to forget! Good luck with making yours though, at least you won’t make any of my silly mistakes! ;)

    Sandra x

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  14. That’s pretty much what’s happened to them this time! The chucking in the back of the wardrobe part that is. Although, I guess shorts are still an option…. once I can bear to look at them again! ;)

    Sandra x

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  15. Thanks Joy. It’s true, I’ve learnt something so it’s not a complete waste from that point of view. Still, I’m giving it a while before I have another go!
    Sandra x

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  16. Thanks and yes short is still a possibility, that’s true! Although it may well be winter by the time I fancy tackling them again! ;)
    Sandra x

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  17. Thanks Sue and thanks so much for the lining with jeans material idea. That’s a really good one, I shall keep that in mind if I ever try again. Which I’m still tempted to do even though I kind of never want to see them again at the same time!

    Sandra x

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  18. Thanks so much, you’re right it’s definitely frustrating but the crochet edging idea is pretty brilliant! That did cross my mind originally but then I forgot all about it in my eagerness to conquer the fabric hems! I might go back to it though - thanks.
    Sandra x

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  19. Ha ha! That’s true, third time lucky you reckon, eh? lol!


    Sandra x

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  20. Awh it sucks that it's not working - what about taking the last pair and cutting them up to just below the knee and hem them there, the flare usually starts from around there in flared jeans so you'd be getting rid of most of the problem?

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  21. Fascinating. Earlier this summer I got it into my head that my fave blue crops prolly look ridiculous becuase they hug my fat calves but are relatively loose elsewhere. I decided to unpick about six inches of the outside seam and inserted a panel of nice fabric. Mistake, they wer like sudden trumpets AND still clingy on the calves. Argh. Un deterred, stupid and determined, I ended up unpicking and recutting and then redoing a third time. To stop the calves hugging, I had to unpick to the top of the thigh and now have a pair of cropped flares for gardening. Argh.

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  22. Ugh, how aggravating. Thank you for being so honest though. I have benefitted and now have one less sewing mistake to make. Plus your perseverance is inspiring me to go dig out those pj bottoms languishing in the back of the closet after I sewed the legs together. All is not lost and I feel sure you will be successful next time. Bless your heart!

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  23. Oh dear, it seems that this jean altering business is a complicated area then! At least I’m no the only one having problems I guess, misery loves company! ;)

    Sandra x

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  24. Indeed, but yes, avoid my mistakes for sure! At least if I’ve helped someone do that, then that’s something! And, good luck with those pjs, I’m sure you’ll have better luck this time around.

    Sandra x

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  25. Oh, it seemed such an easy fix as well as oh so pretty!

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