Browse Tag: pants

How to Hem Jeans

If you cannot view this video please view it on YouTube at:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p3_lYrfOSN0

I went through all my blog posts and was surprised to see I haven’t posted a tutorial on how to hem your jeans or pants! I have done this basic tutorial in the form of a YouTube video so that you can follow step by step how I change my pants to be slightly shorter. I find most women do not sew anything for themselves, let alone alter their own pants to fit. Unless you’re buying new you can’t pick and chose the length of your jeans! Most times I end up with pants that are way too long. The only time I don’t have to alter them is the boyfriend or cropped style which is mean to be capri length.

I hope you find this tutorial useful! Be warned if you are highly trained in the art of sewing, I do not use correct terminology – technique or fancy bells and whistles. This is a basic, beginner tutorial to get by!

Grey Linen Pants

Grey Linen PantsTGIF to all the thrift lovers out there! Today’s look is a repeat but I altered these NOA linen pants into capris because the length bothered me. I simply rolled them up to a length I was happy with, tacked with a few pins and then machine sewed the cuffs in place. I felt like adding a cuff made it a little more exciting than a straight hem.

I paired the new capri with an H&M floral blouse which I also altered in a similar way. Often I find our shoppers at the store are rolling their sleeves up, which gets me to thinking about any time I’ve worn a long sleeved top or jacket. I recently altered all of my blazers to be 3/4 length in the sleeve – for this very reason. They are much lighter and more flattering with a shorter sleeve. For this blouse, the long sleeve didn’t roll due to its light silky nature – so I finally decided to chop off the excess and add a hem.

And lastly, finished this fun outfit with a mini belt, flip flops and statement necklace!

Tutorial: How to Close the Gap!

I have come to believe that all clothing is made to fit a variety of shapes and sizes, but that “fit” might not be what’s best for you no matter what you try. We are not built the same, our bodies retain weight in different areas and we sometimes never lose or gain it in the places we hope for. For instance my shape is very hour glass, my thighs and hips are a healthy size – small waist – and then back out for my ribcage. Now most would think this is an easily flattering womanly shape to have, but if you are this shape, you know that isn’t always an easy task.

I cannot speak to all shapes but having seen thousands of women try on clothing at the store, I know its very few and far between when an outfit fits your shape perfectly first try. More often than not is the “model-esque” bodies that appear to look the best in everything, but that is mainly the result of these women having essentially no body fat or curves to worry about. The clothing appears to hang loosely off their body as the designer probably intended. Often we will sigh and say the designers these days just aren’t making clothes to fit “real” women, when really we should be saying to ourselves: this doesn’t work for me, but there will be one that will.

How to Close the GapIn my case bottoms are a real challenge. I have a sizable behind, wide hips and thick thighs – but my waist is very small. Naturally I have to go a size up to fit in the thigh and bum. This also means I will have a lovely gap at the back of my pants due to the serious difference in size between said tush and waist area. Luckily there is a rather simple fix to this issue, so long as you are will to spend a few minutes sewing!

How to Close the Gap I’m now at a point where I don’t really have to measure the amount that it needs to come in, its a rough 1 inch typically. After analysing the fit of the pants in the mirror I estimate how much needs to be taken in. Flipping the pants inside out, I can fold the amount that needs to be removed from the top of the waist to the point where it will meet my bum. This is the length that the “dart” will need to be.

How to Close the Gap Now that you have an idea of how much space needs to be removed, my first step is to unpick the label that is inevitably sewn right into the back of the pants. If you’re lucky it’ll be screen printed to the actual fabric and you won’t have to do this tedious task! Once the label is out you will have an easier time removing the belt loop. Set it aside for reattaching later.

How to Close the Gap With the belt loop off and the label removed you can now fold the centre back of the pants at the seam. I like to fold it tightly and pin so that it doesn’t shift, making sure the reverse side seam is lined up. This isn’t crucial its just a nice little detail to be aware of. I often forget!

How to Close the Gap With my sewing machine I begin with a stitch that runs from the top of the fold (in this case about 1 cm into the fold) and angle the stitch slowly toward the edge of the pant. This so called “dart” makes the alteration taper nicely, unnoticeable even!

How to Close the Gap Once your folded stitch has been completed – I usually do it a max of 2 inches long – try the pants on to see how they fit. If all has gone smoothly you won’t have to make any further adjustments. Worst case scenario you’ll have to remove the thread with a seam ripper and try again either folding more fabric or less, perhaps making the length of the dart longer or shorter depending on the issue.

IMG_7116 And finally, once you are completely happy with the adjustments you’ve made you may (if you want it to be permanent) trim the excess from the fold and reattach the belt loop by stitching it on manually.

Converted Jumper

2014-08-24-009Converted Jumper

As much as I love the jumper or romper look, my body structure does not allow for it. My body is simply too long! I have the same issue with one piece bathing suits! Now in my thrifting adventure recently in Ottawa for Value Village’s half price day, I found a few gems that I thought were really unique. This jumper for instance, I knew in the back of my mind it probably wouldn’t fit but it was one of those things I just had to have. Naturally when I got home and tried it on properly it was as expected, unless I wanted to give the world a show, it was not going to cover all the necessary parts.

Not to worry though my thrifty friends, if there’s one thing I know how to do its using scissors! (insert evil cackle here) I have scared many individuals in the past with my bold attitude when it comes to cutting clothing and hair, including my friend Julia whose face was absolutely priceless watching me simply chop the sleeves off a white tshirt I wanted to wear that night. It was a great combination of horror and sadness, as if the shirt was a living thing and I just butchered it.

Back on a lighter note to this jumper. Standard black tube top attached to light flowy pink print pants. They were miles too long unfortunately but that’s an easy fix with a quick hem. I’m not crazy about elastic waistbands but for the look I envisioned I figured I would find a way to mask it. In the future I’d like to add a more loose, thicker white elastic or stretchy fabric to the top so it can sit more on my hips than on my waist. I feel it makes my hips look bigger than they need to be. For the first day out in these “new” pants I paired it with a $2 Mossimo blouse I found on the same trip to match – paired with a thick belt, scarf and bold jewellery.