question from you tube

I have a video on you tube titled: “How to narrow jeans” . nidzrulz4eva  left a question in the comments there about how to adjust the waist band and inseam of jeans. 

The waist band of  jeans are tough to alter easily.  The quickest method is to do what I call “he’s going to grow into them some day”.  This happened when my son was about eight.  His grandma had bought him a great pair of black  jeans.  However, they were regular and he was a super slim.  What I did is make a floating interior waistband of elastic.  I took inch wide band of elastic and cut it to his waist size less a about an inch.  Then, I tacked the ends to the waistband inside the jeans to left and the right of the button area.  Then I tacked them equal distantly around the inside in about four spots.

how to make a waistband fit 

You can see that the elastic lays inside the waist band and is tacked at each end by the button and buttonhole and the interior tacks.

The down side to this type of mend is it can create floating clown pants.  They will stay up but there is a lot of gaping.  If you wear your shirts long, it works fine.  It works best, as I said, for people who will soon be growing into their clothes like kids or pregnant ladies.

The second way to bring in a waistband is to make darts.  This works best if your pants are just a little big and the waistband is rather wide.

Here I have taken the waist band and sewn a dart.  A dart starts wide and ends in a point.  At I found this good visual of how to sew a dart. Basically, you pin two layers of fabric together in a line that tapers to a point and sew the two layers together.  The downside to this mend is the darts can rub against your body and that can sometimes be uncomfortable.

I think the best way to alter the waistband would be to remove completely either by picking it apart or by cutting it off, and creating a new waist band out of other fabric.  I have never done this, but I think it could look really cool, especially with contrasting fabric.

She also asks about the inseam.  The inseam can be brought in very close to the zipper, but honestly, only that far.  Shortening the zipper is a big pain and I wouldn’t recommend it.  But if there is enough fabric, it can be sewn in the same way as the outside of the legs.

librarian look

librarian look

Here is my new outfit.  It is most of the beautiful outfit my friend, Patti gave me for my birthday from Kohls.  I love the short sleeve sweater because it just the right warmth for the air conditioned office, and the skirt has about a thousand colors in it.  The shirt and the shoes are both second hand.  I got the shirt from Victoria.  It’s from a now defunct line of clothes called C McKee.  The shoes are Nine West and are hand me downs from Patti.

graduation card

graduation card

Here’s a card I made for a friend for graduation.  It was card stock base with a bag I got from a music store.  I cut out the image and added the word “you” to the image.  I cut the image in three pieces to make the rock in the middle sections.  I colored the “you” to match the letters.


Here’s an odd little bit of something I made.  What will it be?  I don’t know.  It may be a tiny quilt. It may be part of a card.  I made it several weeks ago, and as of yet it doesn’t have a home.  This is why my sewing room is so cluttered.

finished quilt

So here it is: the finished quilt.  I machine stitched around the small group of squares and the larger inset square.  I also machine stitched around the edge to attach the binding.  Then, I hand finished the binding with contrasting thread and I did some large hand stitching on the front to break up the squares and make it less static.  To me it has a real eighties feel because of the bright blue background and the diagonal stitching.

back of Seth’s quilt

I struggled with fabric choices for the back of the quilt I had a little piece of a wonderful uneven green stripe.  I took Steve and Paul with me to the fabric stor and Steve found a these two baby prints that were very sweet.  I, of course, wanted to use all three.
However, the clouds were oriented on the bolt vertically and the moons horizontally.  I didn’t notice this until I got home from the fabric store so I didn’t buy enough fabric to compensate for it.  I had to run back and buy more.  Then I ended up with this.  The giant "I".  Steve hated it, and I grudgingly agreed it wasn’t probably the best choice.
So, here is the finished back, sans giant "I".

sethie’s quilt

Here’s a close up of the skewed fabric.  I didn’t do it exactly on the bias just at an angle to break up the strong checker board pattern.  When I do this it always reminds me of jazz or improvise.  All my quilts are full of it: on the fly improvisation that creates visual interest.  I love problems.  In fact, when a quilt is too planned out or too easily visualized in my head, I often end up not finishing it.  I feel like all the decisions have been made for it so there is no point in finishing, no quest, no journey.
Also, just a note, the plaid from a maternity dress I made.  It is a slightly warped or textured fabric.


So since this was a gift, I have not been blogging about it.  This is my nephew, Seth’s quilt.  I have now finished it and gave it to him and his mom last weekend.  Finally, I can talk about it.
I wanted to give him a quilt because he is the youngest of four, and I feel like he should have some special things too.  I’m sure his mom will make it that way, too, but  I wanted to do my part.  I haven’t made a baby quilt in years, and I gave myself a very short deadline only about four weeks.  I had these green and yellow squares already sewn into rectangles.  There are pieces of my maternity clothes, and my kids’ crib sheet in there.  The one that looks southeastern is Paul’s shorts.  I picked the two rectangles that I liked the best together and sewed them together.  However, I couldn’t figure out how to use the rest.  I had a bunch of this blue fabric that I didn’t use for the the purple quilt so I framed it.
I knew was going to use the balance of the rectangles to create another frame.  But how to add interest?  I cut them on an angle.  This made them much more interesting than if I had just cut them straight across.