Thread Theory

Welcome to the new era of menswear sewing. Go ahead and create something exceptional!


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Jutland Sew-Along: Discussing Materials

Schedule

Today I’ll show you the fabric and notions I’ve chosen for the sew-along pants I’m sewing and we’ll take some time to discuss materials you could choose for your own pair.

I’m creating two pairs of pants for this sew-along:

VARIATION ONE

WrayParsons-2

This pair will feature the design details from Variation 1 of the Jutland Pants pattern.  I’m sewing them in a size 30 for Matt.

Materials I’m using:

  • Self Fabric: Olive 7.35 oz cotton canvas
  • Waistband Facing: Plaid Flannel
  • Pocketing: Densely woven cotton sheeting
  • Interfacing: Medium weight woven fusible interfacing
  • Zipper: 6″ Talon metal zipper
  • Rivets: Brass.  I’ll be using four of these to reinforce the front pockets
  • Otter Wax: Two bars.  These will be used for waxing the finished pair of pants!

Changes I’ll be making to this variation:

  • Create narrower legs (as per Matt’s preference…he’s a skinny guy!)
  • Add buttons to the welt pockets
  • Use Otter Wax to create a water resistant finish

VARIATION TWO

WrayParsons-1

This pair will include the details from Variation 2.  I’m sewing them in a size 34 for my Uncle who covet’s my dad’s orange pair (from our Jutland Pants photo shoot).

Materials I’m using:

  • Self Fabric: Navy blue cotton twill – VERY heavy weight (avoid this fabric if your machine doesn’t like thick layers!)
  • Waistband Facing: Plaid Flannel
  • Lining: Plaid Flannel
  • Pocketing: Densely woven cotton sheeting
  • Interfacing: Medium weight woven fusible interfacing
  • Zipper: 6″ Talon metal zipper
  • Rivets: Brass.  I’ll be using ten of these – two on each front pocket and three on each patch pocket

Changes I’ll be making to this variation:

  • Add a gusset to the main pants and lining crotch
  • Add screw-driver pocket instead of the left cargo pocket
  • Create knee pad pockets that allow for removable knee pad inserts
  • Add additional strengthening top stitching and bar tacks

So now you’ve seen what materials I’ve chosen, let’s have a look at why I made these choices and how you can make your own choices:

Fabric

BagKitFabric-12

These pants can be sewn from all sorts of bottom weight fabrics.  You can try using anything from denim to waterproof Rip-stop!

A note about the cotton canvas we carry in our store: I chose our Olive cotton canvas to put in our store because it is strong enough to withstand a lot of wear but it is thin and light enough to cooperate with light weight domestic sewing machines. It is a great weight to use if your machine is afraid of heavy fabrics.  Because the pattern includes details such as flat fell seams, it is a good idea to choose a fabric that is thin enough for your machine to handle several layers and also to choose something that does not fray substantially as this can make ironing the tiny folds of a flat fell seam quite fiddly!

A note about thick materials: As for the thick twill material I chose for my Uncle’s pair of pants – don’t try this at home (if you’re machine is lightweight).  I sew this weight of material on my industrial sewing machine.  If you would like to sew pants with a heavyweight material such as this one, I’d suggest skipping all flat fell seams and keep in mind that the details such as the knee and hem reinforcements can result in a lot of layers so it might be a good idea to skip them.

A note about stretch fabrics:  Stretch denims and other stretch materials can result in a great pair of Jutland Pants.  Just keep in mind that the stretch inherent in the fabric will change the fit of the pants.  You can either size down or make sure that key fit areas can’t stretch.  For instance, you could use a non-stretch woven material as the waistband facing or as interfacing in the waistband to prevent this area from stretching bigger throughout the day while the pants are worn.

Pocketing

pockets the monthly stitch

(I love the personalized Star Wars pockets that Lindsay used on The Monthly Stitch!)

While actual pocketing will create light weight but strong pocket linings, it can often be difficult to find at your local fabric store.  Pocketing (whether labelled as such or not) just needs to be densely woven, thin and strong.  Any quilting cotton will work nicely (and it’s so much fun to pick personalized prints!) – just keep in mind that the more densely woven your material is, the stronger your pockets will be.  I like to use high quality, high thread count sheeting (fabric intended for sheets) since I happen to have a lot of pocket size scraps of it from an old job I had sewing for an interior designer!  Waste not, want not :).

Hardware

JeansKit-15

Choose a zipper with all metal components.  Look for quality brands such as Talon (an old American zipper company) or YKK (a Japanese zipper company).  Don’t skimp or compromise when choosing a zipper!  This is a notion that needs to deal with a lot of stress and use.

Rivets come in all sorts of shapes and sizes.  Don’t worry if the post seems too long to suit the thickness of your fabric.  You can trim the post to suit your material thickness perfectly to create a strong and effective fit.  Check out the tutorial Matt made to show you how to do this!

JeansKit-17

Choose a button that suits your style and the wearer’s preference.  For a casual and rugged look, use a jeans button that is applied just like a rivet.  For a dressier look, use a thick hidden hook and bar closure.  You can read a detailed post on this closure style at The Cutting Class.  Or personalize your pants by using a wooden, bone or plastic sew-on button (check out the button sewing tutorial that I made to make sure that your button won’t fall off of your pants!).

Tomorrow I’ll be going into all sorts of detail about my approach to preventing and fixing fit issues.  Please email or comment with any questions you might have!

 


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Jutland Sew-Along: Schedule

Welcome to the first post of our Jutland Pants Sew-Along!

As I mentioned in our announcement blog post, this sew-along will be a little different than a classic sew-along.  Instead of covering each step of the Jutland Pants construction process, we will be offering a week of blog posts that show you how to customize this pattern to truly make these pants personalized!

Schedule

 

Also, I’d mentioned in the announcement post that we would be offering a number of videos…um…that’s not going to happen :P.  Matt and I valiantly struggled through a large number of flawed takes and many hours of work before becoming completely exasperated with the quality of instruction we were producing.  We’ve had a few customers request video tutorials from us so, to those who have, I’m sorry that we aren’t able to provide these for you!  In short, we have discovered that my shy personality paired with Matt’s obsession with perfection leads to VERY long filming days and videos complete with a squeaky, stuttering me and inferior lighting, coloring and angles.  Considering how much time we invest into a photographed sew-along (read LOTS), we just aren’t able to add more time to this by attempting to create videos.  For now at least!

Tuesday’s post will feature a few videos (minus sound) that we were able to produce but the rest of the posts will be the usual detailed photographs, write ups and a number of diagrams.  I hope they will be really helpful to you while you work on your pants!


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Thinking about making trousers…

With the Jutland Pants Sew-Along coming up on December 1st, I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about sewing pants.  Next week we will be filming the ‘video diary’ so that it is ready for the sew-along start date.  In the meantime, here are some of the resources I’ve been referring to while brainstorming and researching before we begin to film!

Ginger Jeans sew-along

Have you seen Closet Case File’s latest pattern?  Heather Lou has put epic amounts of work into this pattern and is currently hosting a sew-along on her blog.  I am not usually one for following sew-alongs but this Ginger Jeans Sew-along has got me hooked!  Heather has thought of every single question someone might want answers to as they embark on their first pair of jeans.  She has beautifully photographed her steps (including how to sew the fly!).  I’m glad we haven’t been working on a photographed sew-along because, when it comes to sewing casual pants, Heather’s got your classic sew-along completely and perfectly covered!

kuhl pants

During our sew-along I will be sewing two pairs of pants – one of each variation included in the pattern.  One of these will be put in the mail, once finished, for my Uncle.  He recently visited my parents (around the time of our Jutland Pants release date) and by the time his visit was over, he wanted a pair of pant’s just like my dad’s heavy duty Jutlands (my dad wears them constantly).  My Uncle’s favorite trouser brand is Kuhl and so I’ve decided to include some classic Kuhl details on his pair of Jutlands.  I borrowed a pair of his pants one evening and took some relevant measurements:IMGP2268

As I mentioned in the sew-along announcement post, this pair will include a gusset for ultimate flexibility,  custom pockets (including a screw-driver pocket), and I hope to adjust the fit of the Jutlands a little to match his favorite Kuhl fit.IMGP2267

Speaking of fit, I’ve been planning out some of the alterations I want to show you in our video diary.  My favorite fitting guide in my library is a single page in Winifred Aldrich’s Metric Pattern Cutting for Menswear.  These fitting adjustments are specifically suited to men (which is hard to find in the sewing world!) and they are presented very simply and clearly.IMGP2266

I’ll cover these adjustments in our video as I find it is really helpful to see pattern adjustments in motion rather than photographed or sketched.  Since most pattern adjustments involve slashing and pivoting, I think the dynamic format of video will be perfectly suited to explaining these!
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And last but not least, here’s a little sneak of what our new pup, Luki is up to while I work this afternoon!  He’s trying to dry off after a stormy mid-morning walk by snuggling deeply in his (ever-growing) pile of cozy blankets!  Happy Friday!


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Announcing the Jutland Pants Sew-along

Jutland Sew Along

If you would like some help sewing your Jutland Pants, not to worry – help is on its way!  Join us on the blog starting December 1st for a week of back to back video and photo posts.  This sew-along will be a little different from our normal format.  Instead of posting every few days at what we hope is the pace that you might be sewing, we will be posting a new post once a day for one week.  This way you can refer back to them at whatever pace you desire.  Each post will include a ‘Video Diary’ of my sewing process along with the most important stills from the video posted as photos for you to examine.

Since we already created a thorough step-by-step photographed sew-along that teaches you how to sew the Jedediah Pants, this new sew-along will instead assume a base level of knowledge (never fear, if you don’t have that pants sewing knowledge, simply refer to the Jedediah Pants sew-along as the main construction process for both pants is very similar).  The Jutland Pants sew-along will delve beyond the basic instructions and will focus on making the pattern your own.  We’ll will discuss fitting your pants, we will take a look at how to add a gusset to this pattern (perfect for rock-climbing and other agility based activities), we will add removable knee pads to our pants, we’ll create custom pockets suited to our needs, and we will wax our pants to create a water resistant pair of canvas trousers.

Are there any other elements you would like to see included in this sew-along?  Send in your requests and we will get working on them!