Wednesday, April 29, 2009

1 Pair of Jeans, 3 Projects

This Saturday I'm teaching a workshop on making three different projects out of one pair of jeans.

We will take a single pair of jeans (size 10-12 girls up to ladies), a little print fabric, and a zipper to create a purse: a choice of bowl: and either coasters or bookmarks.We are going to have a lot of fun.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Eye Glass Case

Difficulty level: Easy

1. Cut a 6" to 6.5" circle.
2. Do any decorator stitching through the middle at this time. Zigzag around a little more than the top quarter of the circle.
3. Fold in half, matching the ends of the zigzagging and zigzag the rest of the raw edges. If you want you can embellish with permanent markers.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Leob to Levi

1800’s: American gold miners wanted clothes that were strong and did not tear easily. To meet this demand, Leob Strauss started a wholesale business, supplying clothes. Strauss later changed his name from the rather plain Leob to the extremely recognisable Levi.

Information from Nzgirl

Friday, April 17, 2009

Making Denim

If you want to use a store bought pattern and still want to use your old jeans, here is how you can do that.

Cut off a pant leg or two and cut open at the plain seam. Cut up both sides of the seam close to the seam. Also cut off the hem.
You will then hav a good size piece of denim to work with.
If it still isn't big enough, sew another cut open leg to it. You can make a mock flat-felled seem by adding two rows of top-stitching.
Lay your pattern out on the denim, keeping in mind where the flat-felled seams are. Make sure to plan where the flat-felled seams will end up in the seams. Plan it so the thick flat-felled seams don't match each other exactly, otherwise the layers may be too think and will break your needle.You can also remove a back pocket or cut around a back pocket and use it for embellishment on your project.

Happy Creating!

Friday, April 10, 2009

Denim Belt

Difficulty level: Easy, no-sew

All you need is one pair of jeans that fit around the waist.

Cut off belt loops.

Cut off waist band close to bottom edge.

Weave through belt loops on a pair of jeans and you're done.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Levi Strauss the Inventor of Trousers called Denim Jeans

Jeans history would be nothing without Levi Strauss. Levi Strauss is credited with inventing jeans. Levi Strauss emigrated with his family to New York in 1847. His family sold dry goods such as canvas tenting and Manchester drapery goods. He moved to San Francisco in the early 1850s because he thought the same dry goods business would be brisk, because of the California gold rush.

About 20 years later, a solvent Levi Strauss and a Nevada tailor joined forces to patent an idea the tailor had for putting rivets on stress points of workman's waist high overalls, commonly known as jeans. Levi Strauss chose to use the stronger denim fabric and cotton duck, putting his own name on the product. Later the duck fabric was dropped as consumers found denim more comfortable, particularly after washing. Washing creates the faded bloom on the indigo blue dyeing that we all love.

Eventually in the 1950s people asked for denim jeans or just as often - Levi's jeans, rather than waist overalls. Other manufacturers began to produce jeans. Other brand names such as Lee Coopers and Wranglers also became famous. Each brand is renowned for having a particular cut.

This information comes from

Friday, April 3, 2009

Ruffle Bowl Project

Difficulty level: Beginner

You will need one pant leg cut open along the plain seam. Keep the flat-felled seam intact.

Step 1: Cut out two 10” circles. I like having a flat-felled seam running through the middle. Layer both circles wrong sides together with flat-felled seams opposite each other, one going vertical and the other horizontal. Pin together.
Step 2: Sew a 5” circle in the middle of the layers.

Step 3: Quarter mark the outside of the circle away from the thick seams with pins then pin mark the middle point between the quarter marks for eighth marks. Fold ¼” darts at each eighth mark from the outside raw edge to the center circle sewn. Topstitch along folded edge of dart from raw edge to stitched circle on the inside of the bowl. If you like, you can stitch along the other side of dart on the outside of bowl as well.

Step 4: Satin stitch around the outside raw edge of the bowl.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Where did "jeans" come from?

The word “jeans” is thought to have come from “Genoese” the name for Italian sailors of Genoa. These sailors dressed in a blue fustian fabric that was made from a cotton and wool or linen. The Genoese fabric was imported to Britain as far back as the 16th century.

“In the 19th century, American weavers made hard wearing cotton duck, denim and jeans fabrics to satisfy a home market. At some time, some manufacturers must have replaced the yarns with the locally produced, more readily available cotton making the fabrics all cotton.”