Some jeans enthusiasts swear by these methods to clean their jeans:
- Shower with their jeans on
- Wear their jeans to swim in the ocean
- Freeze their jeans
Please note that I do none of the above. I am a regular gal who likes to look good in her comfy jeans. I wash my jeans in my good ol’ washer and dry them in my good ol’ dryer.
With comfort and style in mind, I designed the Liana Stretch Jeans, which is released this very fateful day. The pattern currently is 20% off (only valid until Dec 6th). If you are in the Itch to Stitch Facebook group or follow Itch to Stitch on Instagram, you might have seen the announcement of the sew along even before the pattern was released. Typically sew alongs are not run right after a pattern is released, but given that the holiday is drawing near, I do want to get it going before everyone is getting too busy to sew. Hence, the sew along will begin on Wednesday, Dec 2nd. I’d love for you to join in at the same time, but you don’t have to follow each step on each day to the T. All the info will remain on the blog and you can get to it at your convenience. To have more interaction, I’ll also be hanging out in the Sew-A-Longs & Sewing Contest Facebook group, where you will see other sewists’ progress and finish garments.
Given today is Cyber Monday, you might be able to get some deals on denim fabric. The important thing is that Liana Stretch jeans use fabric with stretch (sorry if I am pointing out the obvious). Your denim fabric needs to have 20% to 25% stretch. I will go into the details in the Day 1 post, but there’s a quick and dirty way for you to determine stretch %.
Determine Fabric Stretch
- Make a fold on your fabric and put the fold next to a ruler. Use your thumb and index finger of your left hand to hold one side of the fold at 0 of the ruler. And then use your thumb and index finger of your right hand to hold the fold at 4″ (about 10.2 cm). You are not stretching any fabric at all. It sounds more complicated than it actually is; let’s look at a photo, shall we?
- Then you stretch the fabric with your right hand, while keeping the left hand stationary. Stretch as much as you can without completely straining your fabric. Another photo is worth a thousand words.
In my case, you see that I am able to stretch my fabric from 4″ to 5″, which means the fabric has 25% stretch. Here’s how the math goes:
(5″ – 4″) /4″ = 25%
I hope I am not scaring away the math-averse people here. For your convenience, here’s a table for you:
|Stretch 4″ of Folded Fabric to||Percentage of Stretch|
|Stretch 10.2 cm of Folded Fabric to||Percentage of Stretch|
Ideally, you don’t go over 30% stretch or under 15% stretch, especially if you are inexperienced in pants fitting. So let’s stick with the plan for your first pair, shall we?
And if you are buying fabric online, then you should ask the retailer what percentage of stretch the fabric has. It’s not very accurate if they tell you the amount of Lycra (elastane, spandex or any other names) the fabric has. The truest test is the stretch test.
If you decide to buy online, these retailers agreed to extend some discounts to you:
- lowpricefabric.com (a.k.a. Michael Levine in Los Angeles) – 10% off / now to Dec 15 / code: itchdenim10
- plushaddict.co.uk (in the UK, obviously) – 10% off denim / now to Dec 24th / code: LoveDenim
- califabrics.com – 15% off Denim and Twill / no expiration date / code: ItchToStitch
- threadbarefabrics.com – 15% off / November 30 to December 4 / code: ITCHTOSTITCH15
- taylortailor.com (rivets, buttons and zippers) – 15% off / no expiration date / code: itchtostitch
You will need zipper and thread too. If you want to order supplies now, hop over to the Liana Stretch Jeans product page and check out what you need. I’ll go over the items on Day 1 too. Please get enough fabric so we can work on the muslin too. If you happen to be able to reuse the fabric from the muslin, great! But that’s not a guarantee; it will depends on how much adjustment you’ll need.
Here’s the tentative schedule of the Liana Stretch Jeans sew along. But it is subject to change (for example, if we feel that we want more fitting details, we could very much do that). I am thinking that we’ll do week days only and take a break on weekends.
Day 0: Get Ready! (this post)
Day 1: Intro, Material and Supplies
Day 2: Topstitching & Distressing
Day 4: Fitting Part 1
Day 5: Fitting Part 2
Day 6: Sewing the Back
Day 7: Sewing Front Pockets
Day 8: Sewing Fly Front Zipper
Day 10: Hemming and Finishing
Does it sound like a plan? I welcome any suggestions.