Monday, March 8, 2010

shopping in my closet, part 1 (in which I convert an old pair of bootcut jeans into a new pair of skinny jeans)


I've been admiring so many in the blogosphere that are taking old/unwearable clothes and remaking them into new, beautiful things. I'd really like to try a pretty ruffle shirt like the one my BFF made from her husband's old dress shirt. But first things first, as I have a growing mountain of clothing in my craft room that needs fixing or updating.

My most urgent need is jeans to wear tucked inside my newish lovely boots. I didn't own a pair of skinny jeans until a couple of weeks ago. After I bought one pair I got the idea to convert my old bootcut jeans (which are too short now anyway) into skinny jeans from some similar transformations I've seen on several great YouTube videos.

People, this is the easiest wardrobe revamp you could hope for. Really. It takes like twenty minutes and can save you some serious jean money.

This is the process in a nutshell:

1) Turn your old pair of bootcut jeans inside out and lay them down flat. Lay your favorite pair of skinny jeans on top.


2) Find out which seam on your old jeans has the pretty topstitching. Align the edges of the skinny legs along the bootcut seam that is topstitched (this could be the outside seam or the inside seam). You don't want to take in the seam that is topstitched. It will look funny since you can't replicate the topstitching. You want to take in the side that has a regular seam so your new one will blend in. As it happens, the pair I was working with didn't have topstitching on either side.

3) Once it is all aligned carefully and you have the seams nice and flat, trace along the edge of the skinny leg to mark your new seam line on the bootcut leg. Pin in place, taking care to match up the hem of your old jeans nicely.


4) Using a heavy duty needle on your machine (really. don't skip this step), sew your new seams on each leg. Now before you trim and finish the new seams, try the jeans on to be sure they fit the way you like. You may need to make minor adjustments before you finish and press your seams.

Erm. The girls make up their own beds. Good for them.
Bad for photo styling.

Voila. You really can't tell where my new seam starts and the old one ends. Just saved myself some money. Oh, yeah.

29 comments:

  1. 1. Great idea. I've played with some of my jeans' fit, too. Very liberating. If only I could alter my thighs so easily.

    2. You must now cease all boot related blog posts. You know I decided against buying new boots this year. Why must you torture me???

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  2. Bob, yes, I was wondering if I could take in my hips a bit. Now that WOULD certainly require a heavy duty needle.
    And I am sorry for the boot envy. Perhaps you need to rethink your decision. I have decided to wear my boots all spring and summer, maybe even swimming.

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  3. such a good idea! hmmm, if I redo a pair of jeans, i'll need some boots to wear with them. I'm sure we could find some really good sales right now, Robyn!

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  4. Great tutorial!! My mother used to do something similar to my jeans back when I was in jr. high and tapered jeans were all the rage.

    I linked to your project at Craft Gossip Sewing:
    http://sewing.craftgossip.com/tutorial-turn-your-boot-cut-jeans-into-skinny-jeans/2010/03/08/

    --Anne

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  5. Hmmm ... me thinks this means a trip to the thrift store. I always have problems getting jeans to fit through my hips and thighs - the calves are the least of my worries. So I could find anything that fit and turn them into skinny jeans to go with my boots for not much dinero. On the other hand, that would mean buying myself a sewing machine, too, or going over to a girlfriend's house to borrow hers. Neither option is a bad one. :)

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  6. Jessica, man yeah! deals galore.

    Anne, wow, thanks again. I remember those jeans too. Very very straight. Ugh, and stirrup pants! egads.

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  7. S, not a bad idea at all. My biggest problem is finding the length to fit at the same time the waist and bootie fits. Ooh, also this could work to make some cool skinny capris for the summer.

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  8. Awesome jeans transformation!

    I just totally love your kids room too! I spy some totally cute softies behind you!!!

    HUGS!!!

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  9. thank you!!! i'll have to try it. i got some j.crew "so last year" bootcuts at their outlet for $20. look out, they are getting skinny-ized :)
    now to find some great boots to go with :)

    have a happy week!
    gigi

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  10. Love the skinny jeans. But alas, that cut will never be the most flattering on me.

    But what I am loving even more are those fantastic headboards! They are exactly what I have been looking for in my little girls' room. Please tell me you got those recently at a store near me!

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  11. Such a good idea and such a good result! (And the beds look perfect to me)

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  12. hat a clever idea! I have new great boots as well and I also bought my very first straight Jeans (at least the "first" for about 20 years)... and I have to have a new pair of Jeans as well. BUT nearly all my Jeans have a hole at the right knee (due to kneeing a lot with the two little ones - so that is my problem with my beloved old jeans - any good idea for that anybody (I mean I just cover the whole inside and sew over it so it is closed and won't get bigger).

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  13. Jessica, trust me, I've been looking for boot deals. The problem is, I found my perfect boots way back a few months ago (remember Larissa?) then hemmed and hawed about buying them so long that they sold out. Now all other pairs pale in comparison. Unless they cost $200. Which I can't justify since it's already spring weather here. And, well, since it's $200.

    And Larissa, please do send pics if you do decide to take the plunge.

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  14. Kim, I don't actually think it is a very flattering cut for anyone unless they are a human stringbean. That is why I so love long tunics and must make myself some to wear with my newish skinny jeans. :-)
    As for the headboards, aren't you lucky I never throw away emails. It was from onewayfurniture.com, but I don't see anything similar on there right now. If I were you, I'd do a google image search for wrought iron headboard, then let the image lead you to the retail site.
    I think that is what I did. HTH.

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  15. Nö, Robyn has a great patching tutorial on her blog here:
    http://violapearl.blogspot.com/2009/03/patching-jeans.html

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  16. Turned out great! Love your boots! Mind sharing where you got them? I think skinny jeans look great with boots but am afraid my hips and rear are too wide to pull them off :).

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  17. Katie, hence my quest for bootie and hip concealing tunics. :-) as for the boots, I bought them on Piperlime and they are by Miz Mooz.

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  18. Sooo clever! My bootlegs always look a little too flary, so this will be perfect to try out on them :D

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  19. Thanks! Gonna try it tonight!

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  20. This is great! Now only if I had a pair of skinny jeans to copy!

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  21. I LOOOOOOOOOOOOOOVE this idea!
    great upportunaty touse my favo jeans to turn into a skinny... A great fitting jeans only, ..., bootcut.
    thanx!

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  22. Thanks for the tutorial Larissa - this is the easiest one I've seen. The pics REALLY help me - I need visuals. I can't wait to try this out. But first, I have to decide which jeans to alter! =)

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  23. Fabulous! Now if only I wasn't 7 months pregnant and could even think about wearing skinny jeans...

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  24. Thank you for this post! I want to do the same to several of my old jeans, but I've been so afraid to try! This is the push I needed!

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  25. Thank you Larissa (and Robyn), so I might want to work on repairing my old Jeans (which I like so very much because all the companies seemed to have changed their models since I last time bought Jeans).

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  26. totally fantastic -- what a great project! :^D

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  27. I'm taking the plunge tomorrow -- not skinny jeans legs, but slimmer legs. you're such an enabler.

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  28. I ofund this on craft gossip ages ago, but I'm ready for it today so I wanted to say THANK YOU, u make it look ez. I'm off to get my heavy duty needle.

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