I’d just been considering what to refashion for Refebulous, an annual sewing challenge held in February, which aims to inspire people to repair/refashion/reuse clothes, when I found this pair of jeans on the free rail of the community op shop in Manjimup. Unlike most jeans I see in op shops, these had a fair amount of useable fabric.
I’ve been wanting a denim Stokx Rock skirt for a while and I thought I’d have plenty of fabric in these, plus lots left over to make a sleeveless jacket. I’m so naive!
I began by almost completely deconstructing them. I removed the waistband, belt loops and back pockets, and unpicked the side seams. I then got out the pattern pieces and laid them on the available fabric, only to find that I might not have as much fabric as I thought. No matter, I pushed on.
A couple of things to note – the back pockets were both badly stretched out, and the pattern piece did not fit on a leg, no matter which way I positioned it. Piecing was in order.
I’m not sure why, but I wasn’t thinking very clearly and thought the back pieces were the front and carefully included a front pocket on one side. I got suspicious when I sewed the dart and checked the pattern piece. Then I had to consider whether to keep it here but couldn’t quite get my head round it. Unpicking, cutting and piecing ensued.
The pattern calls for an invisible zip and I found a metal one in my stash, I have no idea where I got it and I’m sure I’ve never seen a metal invisible zip before. Inserting it was a bit of a challenge and it’s not my best effort, but I had to console myself with “near enough is good enough”.
I reapplied one of the back pockets and had to change its shape to accommodate both the dart and the stretched out situation. This is how it looks on the inside, you can see the original stitching lines.
If you look at the photo of the zip you can see that it looks as though I haven’t matched the stitching lines, but it’s a bit of an optical illusion. I decided to use deflection to hide it and sewed the jeans label over the top. I feel happier with this.
Because Lindy from Stokx Patterns has an Instagram challenge called “Stokx in the wild” when her patterns are spotted out and about, I thought I’d make a label on my Cricut and put it where one of the back pockets used to be.
Here are the first photos I took of the skirt, wearing it with my recycled tablecloth Kalle shirt from Closet Core Patterns.
I wore the skirt to play with Miss G. The denim has a reasonable degree of stretch, which makes the skirt extremely comfortable when sitting on teeny tiny chairs! These will be my Sewn Shown Seated shots. Miss G insisted we both wear our hats for this activity, mine is another recycled tablecloth and is a Liz Haywood bucket hat, which is a free pattern.
Having seen these photos I decided that I needed the skirt to be longer as I seem to have lost a lot of the lovely shape. More unpicking!
I added a more traditional jeans hem, narrow with double topstitching. I’m much happier with it at this length.
The left side of the back is the one I had to piece. I thought I’d document my new design lines.
Having worn it a couple of times I decided that I needed a front pocket, so I sewed a back pocket onto the front. Sadly it had to go over my #StokxInTheWild label, but I added a slightly more subtle one to the pocket. Too subtle – I’ve gone from the sublime to the ridiculous!
I decided I wanted a bigger hashtag for StokxInTheWild, so I made a new label and affixed it to the waistband, except I forgot the hashtag!
A couple of shots of the skirt, now completely finished. It goes really well with lots of my tee shirts, especially the shorter ones. I do think the skirt looks better a bit longer.
I also made a new long sleeved tee which I know I will team with this skirt a lot.
Whilst I had it on for these photos we wandered down to the park at the end of our street where the Western Australian Symphony Orchestra were playing. These events are always wonderful, with fabulous music and street food. It was standing room only, so we stood!
The orange top is a Pattern Union Eva Tee and it does have a story. It began life as a zero waste dress that I made at the Fibres West biennial event in a class taught by Holly McQuillan. I think I’ve only worn it once, and these are the only photos of it I could find. I wore it under a sari for a Bollywood night. The sari didn’t last long, so I just wore it alone most of the night. Shown here with the lovely Fran Ponta. I should mention that lots of people there had no idea who I was on this night!
I didn’t enjoy wearing this dress for some reason, but the big advantage of it was that I only had to unpick one seam to have a flat piece of fabric (with holes for arms and neck). It was easy to cut out the long sleeved tee and I know that it will get a lot of wear, as it’s the perfect weight for a cool summer evening, or autumn day.
I did save as much of the unpicked topstitching thread from the jeans as I could, winding it on to a vintage bobbin. Now I just need to remember to use it.
Finally, a video of Miss G going down the slide, which is quite steep, and therefore fast. I went after her and shot off the end, landing flat on my back on the lawn, to the consternation of my children. I think they consider me too old for such shenanigans, whereas I enjoyed it immensely.