After lots of cutting and preparing, there’s no more dicking about: it’s time to put this puppy together.
I chose to use contrasting orange thread for the stitching, for that proper ‘jeans’ feel. The problem is this shows up every last error, of which there are many. The flat felled seam on the right shoulder looks like it was sewn on a plane in heavy turbulence. It’s frustrating because the one on the left came out really well, so I can’t say it’s deliberate.
I had a real battle with the zip. I’ve not put a zip in before, and I found it impossible to line up the front yokes so they run completely in line. I unpicked it once and tried it again, but it came out pretty much the same. I need a lot of practice, sigh.
For the Mandarin collar, I didn’t bother making a new pattern piece; I just used the collar stand from the original pattern and followed this YouTube tutorial:
The final collar doesn’t sit quite perfectly, but I think speaks more to my pattern-cutting abilities than anything else.
I also had a bit of a battle with the sleeves (quelle surprise). As is rapidly becoming a theme, one looked great and the other did not – I got a bit of puckering at the top. I’d simply not set it in far enough, so took some stitching out and tried again. It’s much better second time around.
After trying on the finished garment, I’ve realised you’d might want to use stretch denim for this. When it’s on you, it is !on! you. I also found that the cut is a little generous (it’s from the 1970s, after all), so I added a couple of contour darts in the back with Marc’s help (shown above) for a slightly snugger finish. And here it is!
I’m really pleased with how its come out, and looking forward to wearing it at Mighty Hoopla in June. Marc has commissioned a pair of red denim dungaree shorts, but for now I’m letting the sewing machine have a few days’ rest.