Jamie Jeans

I made jeans! I feel kind of unstoppable now. This is the Jamie Jeans pattern by Named, an indie pattern company from Finland. I've seen lots of lovely versions of these around the blogosphere, but I'd held back from them myself due to a failed jeans-making experience last year (from a Burda pattern) and their spendy price tag. However, I knew in order get a step closer to my goal of a completely (or almost completely) handmade wardrobe I would need to make some jeans, because they're such a staple piece for me.

The Jamie jeans are a skinny jean with a mid-rise waist. What really attracted me to them are the unique details: the seam running down the front and the contrast pocket panels, which I love.

I intended for this pair to be a wearable muslin, and they turned out very wearable indeed! I used stretch denim (95% cotton, 5% spandex) from Jo-Ann that I got for 50% off, so I wouldn't be too upset if they didn't turn out. The denim is surprisingly nice (the bolt said it was made in Japan), but I don't think they're carrying it any longer - it was from their spring collection.

One nice thing about this pattern is that the pattern pieces are nested and there are different files for different sizes (only two sizes are contained in each file). I think this layout is really clever and ends up saving a lot of paper. The only piece I ended up having to trace was the waistband.

I was really happy with how well these fit straight from the pattern. I pinched out about an inch of fabric from center back for a swayback adjustment (the same adjustment I always make to my Maritime shorts) and shortened the legs by about two inches. I shortened them after the jeans were already made, rather than shortening the pattern pieces themselves, so the calf area is a big bigger than it would otherwise be. I think this is for the best however, as I've read in other reviews that the calves are kind of tight, and I wouldn't want them to be any tighter than they are here.

The construction was fairly straight-forward, and the instructions seemed to be geared toward an intermediate level sewist. I referred to this photo guide a couple times to make sure I was doing everything right.

I did have some trouble installing the fly zip. Somehow it ended up not being set in deeply enough and the zipper teeth were visible. I fixed it by stitching the zipper directly to the top side of the pants, which luckily blends in pretty well because of the darkness of the pants and the thread color. I think I just didn't mark my notches well enough, but I also should have referred to Grainline's fly zip tutorial as I was making these because the flys on my Maritime shorts look a lot better than this one.

One problem area I've noticed is the bagginess/wrinkles around the crotch and upper thigh area (see picture above). Does anyone have any idea what causes this and how to fix it? Is it something to do with crotch length/depth? I'm pretty much a novice when it comes to pants fitting, so any help would be much appreciated!

Overall I'm pretty happy with these, though I definitely want to work on improving the fit in my next pair. I'm just glad to dispel the lingering doubt I had about jeans-making - now I know I'll be able to make it work!

<3 Lindsay

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