Sewing Project: Embroidered Jeans
Knowing how to embroider jeans is a useful skill in sewing. Let’s face it, jeans are common everywhere so being able to embroid jeans will give you a unique look. Below we have created a simple guide on the best ways to embroider your jeans.
Preparing to Embroider Your Jeans
Undo the inner and outer leg seams to about 20–25 cm up from the hem. Draw vertical lines 8–15 cm long with tailor’s chalk or a textile marker. Sew along the lines with embroidery stitches in different-colored threads.
Pull the ends of the threads through to the wrong side by pulling the lower thread until a small loop appears. Pick this up with the point of a pin and pull until the upper thread comes through to the wrong side. Knot the upper and lower threads together several times.
Easing means reducing a slightly longer fabric edge to match the length of a shorter edge. The fabric is squeezed together without producing folds. Professionals can ease fabrics without the aid of gathering but it is a helpful aid for beginners.
- On each side of the seam line of the longer piece of fabric sew a row of running stitch 0.5 cm from the seam line. This is a row of a straight stitch with a stitch length of 4–5 mm. Leave thread ends of about 10 cm at the beginnings and ends of the rows.
- Pin the fabric pieces right sides together at the beginning and end, leaving the part in between open. Now pull both the upper threads at the beginning or end of the double row of running stitch until the extra width is reduced to the same length as the shorter piece.
- Distribute the gathered fabric evenly so that no folds will form when you finally stitch the seam between the rows of running stitch. Remove the gathering threads after stitching the seam.
Gathering means that a lot of extra width of one fabric edge is gathered and pulled together, forming small, soft folds.
- With stitch length 4–5 mm sew two parallel rows of running stitch inside the seam allowance. Leave thread ends about 10 cm long. At one end, knot both upper or lower thread ends together close to the sewing line. At the other end, pull both upper and lower threads firmly, so that the fabric is pulled together. When you have reduced the gathered edge to the desired length, knot these ends close to the stitching line as well.
- Gently push the extra fabric to distribute it evenly all the way along. Small vertical folds will form between the two rows of stitching. Now sew the gathered edge to the flat edge of the matching piece of fabric.
For the particularly strong felled seams you find on all jeans, you must reckon on seam allowances of at least 1.5 cm.
- Place the fabric pieces wrong sides together with the edges matching and sew the seam. Press the seam and then press both seam allowances to one side.
- Trim the lower seam allowance to 3 mm. Fold in the edge of the wider seam allowance to a width of 5 mm, fold again over the narrower seam allowance and press. Then top-stitch close to the folded edge.
This seam is particularly suitable for fine, transparent fabrics as the seam allowances on these fabrics, which are visible from the outside, are neatly hidden inside. Reckon on seam allowances of 1.5 cm for these seams.
- Place the fabric pieces wrong sides together, pin and baste, and sew a 1 cm wide seam. Trim the seam allowances to 3 mm and press them open.
- Fold the fabric pieces, right sides together, along the seam and press along the edge of the seam. Sew a second row of stitching 5 mm (or the width of the presser foot) from the seamed edge, completely enclosing the cut edges. Press the seam allowance to one side.