Making clothes for Kelvin and Harry feels much more relaxed than making my own clothes because there is less angst involved in the fitting and style. Those guys will wear anything whereas I am way more fussy. So when things go wrong (as they inevitably do) it’s not that big a deal – Kelvin even declared that the ugly darning job I did on these shorts was a unique touch!
I have wanted to make Thread Theory’s Jedediahs since they were released and decided to start with shorts (because: less fabric) before moving onto the trousers that Kelvin is requesting. This was actually my first time EVER using a printed pdf pattern (apart from kids clothes that fit onto about 3 A4 sheets). It wasn’t as much of a pain as I thought sticking everything together – kind of like doing a big puzzle. I love being able to draw on the pieces or alter them, knowing that I can print out another. I used a cotton drill fabric and leftover fabric from his shirt for the binding. Though simple, the fabric is perfect I think.
Having finally finished this project and mulled over it for a few weeks, I am sort of undecided about how I feel about it. On one hand I love Thread Theory’s style/branding and the owners seem very decent and helpful from what I have read about them – I’m happy enough with the shorts and will definitely make the trousers. On the other hand this did not run than smoothly for me and there are definitely some issues with the finished product. Partly that was due to my own problems but I also found that I just couldn’t get my head around the instructions. It’s probably just personal preference and maybe I am used to the ‘big four’ but it felt like things were explained in a complicated way. There is an online tutorial and a video explaining the fly insertion that I found useful. Even still some of the tutorial photos were not close up enough to really see the stitching or just plain confusing. I’ve sewn trousers and a fly before and could probably figure it out, but I like to follow the instructions, dammit! I wonder if I will understand them more clearly the next time I make them or if I should just go through and make my own notes? Anyway, I got there in the end.
I’ve had so many problems with my sewing machine lately that, despite saying in my last post I would wait, I bought a new one. Yay, for me but also this meant I had to learn how to use it which involved a few hiccups and a trip back to the store where they discovered the ‘balance’ was off. I had no idea there was such a thing! I also had problems with my overlocker and ended up taking it apart for a thorough de-fluff plus I had to nip out to the shops and buy an extra overlocker spool during construction. Talk about breaking my train of thought!
You know when a few things mess up it seems like everything starts to go wrong, well I did some pretty dopey things like using the wrong coloured thread when topstitching the waistband and flat felling one of the inner leg seams the wrong way.
The worst thing I did though was cut through the already attached and trimmed waistband during overlocking. I asked Kelvin if he wanted me to re-do it or come up with some other solution and he said that darning was fine – that part of the shorts is usually covered by his T-shirt anyway. Really sloppy of me I know, but sometimes you just can’t be bothered.
A problem that I had with the pattern itself (which may have somehow been my fault) was that the waistband was too short for pants. I used a gather stitch to ease the pants in but ended up with a few accidental tucks. Also I got frustrated at the tutorial on finishing the waistband so just did my own thing and it looks fine. Sorry if this is getting really boring but I need to remember all these details for next time!
The leg is tapered so the hem doesn’t turn up as well as it should. I’ll probably widen the legs next time anyway, but if not I’ll angle the bottom of the side seam out to allow for hemming. I’ll also take an inch off the original pattern length as I ended up removing that much.
My main complaint is that there is some strange wrinkling – particularly in the back. I don’t know what caused that, it may well be my fault but you can also see it in Tea and Rainbow’s pair. I looked online for other versions with this problem and couldn’t see many but you never really know because people do tend to post their best photos.
Even though I have been grumbling, I enjoyed a lot of this project and all it’s little elements like flat felling, bound seams and stitching the back pockets. Hopefully with this version under my belt the next one will be much easier and I will eliminate some (all!) of the issues.
I think Kelvin did pretty well during this ‘photo shoot’. He was gunning for more photos like this one though: