To toile or not to toil, that should be the question?

(with apologies to William S).

As Keith Urban has been known to sing: “When I wake up in the mornin’ light, I pull on my jeans and I feel all right”*, so today I wore my new blue jeans for the first time, but they were supposed to be a toile!


I made these jeans from a $4 piece of fabric that I bought in Christchurch, NZ to test the Burda Anita stretch jeans. Part way through I decided that if I was going to toil away (geddit?), I might as well have a go at making them into something wearable. I found some scraps of pink fabric to line the pockets and fly lining with (fabric harks back 20 years – no idea what I had used it for), and fossicked in my cotton stash drawer for topstitching thread. Pulled out the first reel, and started sewing. I was so intent on the toile part that I didn’t even realise that the top stitching matched the pockets – a happy coincidence! I also used a 50c zip from the lovely Kutwell in Christchurch, and it’s too bulky. I was anxious to test this pattern as I had no idea which size to use. In the end I went for the smallest size which was still too big, so I took the jeans in down the back and on the sides at the top. I note that patterns nowadays are quite small in the bust department but are a couple of sizes bigger in the hip – designed for the classic pear shape. I have the opposite problem! I am a size 8 at the top, a size 6 waist and a size 4 hips. When this is converted to measurements, I am your classic rectangle! In fact, I can never believe how lumpy and chunky I look in all these photographs – although I do wonder about whether there is any truth in the rumour that the camera adds 4 kilos. Anyway, I was reluctant to risk better quality fabric, so was happy to sacrifice this cheapo stuff. It also gave me an opportunity to check out how all the complicated bits worked. I will change the order of construction for the next pair, sewing front crotch and inserting the zip, then doing the inside leg, including the topstitching and finally the outside leg. I will do the back centre seam and waistband as one element so that I can take them in (and let them out) more easily.

If you have beady eyes you will have noticed that the back pockets don’t match – well, yes. The pattern has two different pockets and, as I was messing around, I thought I would check them both out. When I make the next pair I think I will go back to the traditional shape and use matching pockets!

The jeans are also too long and I didn’t realise how bad they were until I saw the front view photos – they will be modified immediately!


I did rush off and put higher heels on, but they are not the answer. I also didn’t like the front of the vest I was wearing – so bad that I can’t put a photo up – I look ginormous, and I have been to work looking like this!! So… I ducked upstairs and put on another vest, much better.




Jeans: cheapo stretch denim, Burda Anita skinny leg jeans

top: Stylearc Susan top made from stretch merino from Global Fabrics

necklace: o-ring from Dairing, handknitted

first vest: Sab Five Five

second vest (!): The Secret Closet, Shenton Park

first shoes: Django & Juliette from Lindy Rosenwax, Nedlands (before she closed down)

second shoes: Sab Five Five

Global Corporate Challenge (When did I last blog?):

Tuesday: 22,160

Wednesday: 21,436

Thursday: 21,415

Average: 23,751

And another trophy – this time for the 500,000 steps milestone – I am so tired from walking so far!!

individualmilestone-2 (1) 2

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2 thoughts on “To toile or not to toil, that should be the question?

  1. Your jeans look great! It is funny because I have also been workingon a test pair of jeans. Hope to post later tonight or tomorrow.

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