The ginseng of the poor man

In an attempt to mitigate some of the effects of my party life (yeah, I work too much and don’t compensate with sleep – what did you think I was talking about??) I have taken to a routine of drinking the juice of half a lemon with some honey in hot water first thing in the morning. To be honest, the life-changing effects haven’t yet materialised, but I am hopeful. So much so that I told an asian colleague of mine about it. Who replied she’s doing “the ginger thing, because ginger is the ginseng of the poor man”. Maybe I should add some ginger?

Enter stage right: Ginger Jeans by Closet Case Files.

Now, unless you’ve been living in a cave for the last year, you’ll have read/heard about these. I have yet to come about a single instance where somebody reports they could not make them work for them – if you know of such a case, I’d be super curious to hear/read about it! Do leave me a comment 🙂

I purchased the pattern … well, I don’t remember. Fairly soon after it was released, I suppose. I proceeded to cut them out. And then promptly lost all will to actually sew them. So the pile lingered in my sewing room. And lingered. And then it started to talk dirty to me, so it was banished into the wardrobe that holds the scraps.

Eventually, however, a week off came around, and I pulled the pile out. It was sufficiently humbled by it’s time in the quiet corner, so we agreed it was now time to get to work.

Ginger jeans - halfway there
Ginger jeans – halfway there

Oldbies amongst you may remember that I made a few jeans before, and had good success with Jalie 2908. I loved those jeans, despite a few flaws (like a gaping fly … ). But hey – they had purple top stitching! That’s gotta count for something, no? Anyways, I lost weight and at some point just had to admit that they weren’t good enough to keep with flaws *and* ill fit. So out they went.

Ever since, I wanted to make another (few) pair(s). However, as it sometimes goes – I was too lazy to trace them off in a couple of sizes smaller. Then the Ginger Jeans by Closet Case Files came along. Everybody was making them, everybody was raving about  how great the pattern was, and I thought, hey, maybe it’s time to branch out. Also, for some reason I find tracing a pattern not so cumbersome if it’s one I haven’t done before. Me vs. logic: 1 – 0 .

For these jeans, I used a really weird flocked denim that I purchased in my all-time favourite shop fabricland in Brighton. It’s been lurking in my stash for a good while, and if memory serves I bought it because it was a) really weird and b) really cheap. Perfect for a new jeans pattern, which may or may not turn out wearable!

Weird flocked denim
Weird flocked denim

At the time I’d cut the jeans, I sewed the rest of it up as yet another Moss skirt, which unexpectedly has turned into one of my favourites, tho. So I was really hoping for the jeans to work out (spoiler alert – they did!).

Flocked denim moss skirt
Flocked denim moss skirt

So, back to the matter at hand 😀 Ginger jeans. I cut a straight size 10, no changes, for the low rise skinny version. In the end, I shaved off 1/4 inch on both inside and side seams to take them in a tad, but that was it.

The instructions have you prepare all pieces that need interfacing, folding, pressing, etc first thing – which I found very clever. By the time you actually need those belt loops, you’ll be very happy to just have them handy, trust me 🙂

Then you proceed to put the front together – while the pocket construction is similar to the Jalie ones, the inner pocket is cut from one piece rather than two, which I liked. What I’m not sure about and may change for the next round is that the right side of the pocket fabric ends up on the outside of the pocket – so any sneak peek into your pocket will show the wrong side, which may be disappointing if you went for a lovely print (I didn’t, I used some rather unremarkable scrap).

Inside, pockets, waistband facing
Inside, pockets, waistband facing

As you can see, I did not do proper flat felled seams, I just finished them with a zigzag stitch and double top stitched in normal thread. Not only would the fabric obscure anything more elaborate, at this point I wasn’t sure they’d fit me and wanted to cut down on sewing time.

The zipper insertion is well explained and worked out marvelously – if you need more, there’s a sew along you can follow. I found the instructions more than sufficient to guide me, tho.

Fly zip
Fly zip

When it came time to put the back together, I vaguely remembered seeing some complaints that the back pockets were a tad close together – I may totally have made that up … anyways, it turned out that I either had forgotten to transfer the markings for the back pockets to my fabric pieces, or maybe they’d rubbed off during their time in the quiet corner, so I grabbed an RTW jeans and just copied the pocket placement over. Ta-da.

Back pockets
Back pockets

I’m afraid it’s rather impossible to actually see much with this busy fabric, but I hope you get the idea 🙂 And that cleverly placed clothespin, I hear you ask? Just another small change I made to have two belt loops in the center back instead of one – my rather pronounced sway back needs some extra pulling powers to keep waistbands close to my skin 😉

Extra fuzzy back shot
Extra fuzzy back shot

Speaking of – the curved waistband does work a treat in that area. I still need a belt, but there’s no gaping to speak of – amazing, really! This was also the only area I strayed from the instructions – ever since I learned the Jalie way of attaching a waistband, that’s been what I do. So much easier, and great results pretty much every time.

Ginger Jeans - finished
Ginger Jeans – finished

That’s the gist with my Gingers. As it happens, there are a few other stretch denims in my stash earmarked for more of these – I could also use another pair of boot cut jeans, really, and I may or may not have ordered some stretch twill with a leopard print to remake my Temperley knock off jeans … they were always a tad on thebig  side side, and had to be thrown out after my weight loss 😦

Again, this turned out a bit more rambly than planned, but hey, I’ve got to use all those words I saved while not blogging, no??


Published by kokorimbaud

Love all things vintage, especially knitting from the victorian era through to the swinging twenties.

2 thoughts on “The ginseng of the poor man

  1. Those turned out great and fit you soooo welll! You are making me want to make some too, and I’m really trying to resist – despite pulling out 2 yards of stretch denim and putting on the sewing table. ARGH!

    I hope you make some more of those so I can live vicariously…

    1. I am indeed rather chuffed with the fit 😀 especially as I have another couple of stretch denims in my stash … you may indeed see more of them 😉
      They go together like a charm, just in case you give in to that urge (not that I’m ENCOURAGING YOU *cough*), but even with the fake flat felled seams it was a 10 hour affair from cutting to finishing – not hard, but involved 🙂

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