Saturday, January 21, 2023

Just-Patterns Veronica Vest with more jeans

Happy New Year everybody! I have taken an unintentional break from posting here on the blog. Life just got really busy with family and other obligations taking up my time, but I have definitely been sewing since I last posted in October. As well as teaching classes, finishing my garden remodel, and just taking a rest after a very busy summer and fall. Also I knew I would have time now to catch up on all my blog posting, as I am recovering from a foot surgery this week, so what better time than to sit with my laptop, reclining on the couch, catching up on movies, blogs and emails.

I have what I call "house arrest" for at least 2 weeks and maybe up to 4 weeks so I will have a lot of time to catch up. I think in a week or so I can get around in the house better, as of today I can very gingerly walk around so it's not too bad. But no driving since it's my right foot. Which means it's time to do tasks I've saved for this month, such as the not so fun working on my taxes and the slightly more fun of reorganizing my recipe files. And then when I feel a bit better I can do some low-key sewing projects. 

The day before this surgery I threw on these items and took some pictures so I could actually post some of my December sewing. I made the wool tweed version of the Veronica Vest by Just-Patterns and then when I made the blue corduroy jeans I had enough remaining to make another vest. 

Here's the tweed version of the vest, this piece of black and white wool was a remnant saved from making a coat which was a sample for a class at Hello Stitch back in 2017.

Blackjeans and vest2

It's perfect for this vest and uses up a remnant, so a win. The jeans are my go-to pattern for all jeans which is the Megan Nielsen Ash jeans

Here's the second version of these same patterns together.

blue cord jeans and vest2

I think what I have ended up with are some very mix-and matchable and usable separates that I can wear with a lot of other items in my wardrobe. I've already worn the jeans several times with different sweaters. 
I had been searching for some nice stretch corduroy in colors for ages but in the fall as a Minerva Maker I was offered the opportunity to sew with their fabric and it's a great fabric. I will definitely use it again, now I want purple cords. This is their Minerva Core Range Stretch 7-Wale Cord fabric, the color was French Navy. 

ash jeans pattern with blue cord

Now for some sewing details. I have this jeans pattern dialed in and have the various leg widths that I might want to use traced out and ready to go. I decided for these I wanted a slightly wider leg, I guess it's just about a bootcut shape. I have made the Version D Flare leg and I thought they came out a bit too wide, so after completing I went back and narrowed them slightly. Here's the post where those jeans are pictured, as it turns out that is the same cord fabric from Joann's that I used in the black jeans above. 

So to make the bootcut I just measured the opening on my teal green cord jeans as well as a couple of other pairs of bootcut pants that I have, and added to my existing pattern pieces to get the opening the same circumference. See below I have taped on tracing paper to the bottom of the pants leg pattern piece.

cutting out Ash jeans pattern

And then I played around with the width until I got it to where I liked the look. Also I happen to have these suede booties (which I now have in 3 colors - they are that comfortable) so I hemmed to wear with those. 
boot cut cord jeans

Since I was conserving fabric as I cut out these blue cords, I decided to use some denim remnants for the inside waistband. And I used the wrong side of the denim as some of these dark blue denims give off dye for ages despite many washes. My beige leather car seats can attest to the power of blue dye on blue jeans, unbelievable how much color comes off year after year of wearing, despite many washes. Also I prefer to make the pocket bags continue to the center front and create a waist stay, like you see in many ready to wear jeans. I think it keeps the pockets linings from coming out of the top of that front pocket, and also counteracts the stretch in that area of the pants. 

blue cord jeans, zipper fly

Here's a look at the vest and jeans together. I know I cut out the corduroy with the nap running in the same direction for both pieces however I think they look a bit different in all the photos. Perhaps because I've worn the jeans several times and not yet worn the vest?  Anyway - you can see that there are not facings in the vest, I did change up the pattern as I went along. Mostly because I was short for time and decided to omit the facings and just do a full lining which I sewed in and then pulled through on the lining side seams. I did put interfacing around the neck and bottom edge which is similar to the pattern instructions. 

Blue cord jeans and vest on hangers

Black tweed vest and jeans on hangers

black vest and jeans back

I also didn't have the hardware slider for the back vest belt so I just tied it in a knot. which works as well. Really the whole project was a late night sewing whim that turned out pretty well and reduced by fabric stash by 2 pieces. 

Here's a closer look at the black corduroy jeans. I got this fabric at Joann's maybe 3 years ago? or 2 years? What is time anyway - with our various periods of lockdown things tend to blur together. But it is the same fabric as the teal corduroy Ash jeans. Every once in a while I find really good fabrics in one category at Joanns, which is bottom weight items, whether it is denim, ponte or corduroy. If I go there intentionally looking I might come up with nothing, but if I am there for perhaps a color of thread or a last minute button requirement, I always look at the aisle of denim and corduroy and often find very nice quality fabrics. Weird - as most of their other stuff is pretty terrible. And slight rant, they used to carry Ambiance bemberg rayon lining in basics like navy, black and grey but those days are gone. I think that fabric is actually hard to come by anywhere, apparently the pandemic and international shipments are the cause and I hope we see it again in local shops. 

Black cord jeans front

I omitted some of the topstitching on the waistband and used black thread for all other topstitching. When it comes to jeans I'm a bit different as I really prefer tone-on-tone stitching, rarely a contrasting stitching for me, I like the look of the stitching disappearing into the fabric color. Even for my ready to wear jeans that I have purchased in the past, I see that I have many where the stitching is the same color as the fabric. 

Blue cord jeans and vest1

Well that's the latest for my vest and jeans combos. I plan to do a few more posts in this next couple of weeks when I certainly will have time on my hands and my painful foot propped up on pillows! 

Up next, I made a gorgeous camel wool coat for my friend Heather that I know you will be interested in seeing, and then some wool trousers are just completed. I'm currently doing an online class with Hello Stitch on sewing trousers - this is a new class for me and we had lots of sign ups. Maybe this very chilly winter has everyone thinking about warm wool pants. 

So I hope everyone is having a great new year and thanks very much for the kind words and emails checking to see if I had disappeared from the sewing blog world. Not yet!

Happy 2023 Sewing,

Perhaps we are edging out of our drought here in California, after the 3 weeks of unbelievable rainstorms. With trees uprooted all over and lots of flooding, my corner of the bay area came through it ok. As we all said, we want this much rain, just not all in one week!  One day as it was storming I heard a different sound and saw the hail which probably didn't make my lemon tree very happy although there are still plenty of lemons ripening. 

Hail on the lemon tree