Janky June Update

It’s So Janky

Did you hear that June is janky sewing month? What you didn’t receive the memo? Well that just shows you how janky this plan was. My friend Caroline over at 4-sisters came up with the concept on the heals of what she calls her janky jeans. I might or might not have volunteered to make a badge for Janky June. I can’t remember if I had volunteered but I know it was not done.


Source: www.urbandictionary.com

So let’s start from the beginning.  What is Janky June? Janky June is a month long sewing challenge to sew as jankily as possible.  Crooked topstitching? Great. Unfinished seams? 4 gold stars. Puckered stitches? A+. You get the idea. Janky sewing is not only ok, it’s encouraged.



Submission #1: Manhattan Shorts

My first submission for Janky June are my Manhattan trousers turned shorts. Cutting off the legs of a trouser pattern is a janky way to make shorts. These will cup under your butt too much and will cut into your tights when you sit. I doubled down on these so-so shorts and made two. Notice the “fine” (as in good enough) quality of the these photos and my “fine” pressing skills?

Manhattan Shorts

The red pair I screwed up in so many ways I ran out of fabric and had to use a filmsy cotton fabric for the pockets. I have to lose about 15 lbs to fit into these because I didn’t account for the less stretchy fabric. I’m hoping the stuffed sausage look comes into style.

Manhattan Shorts Pocket



Submission #2: Circus Tent Top

Simplicity 1107 Front

I call this top my circus tent top. It’s Simplicity 1107. There is 7″ is total ease in this top for the XXS size and grows to 9.5″ of ease in the XXL.  The fabric recommendation calls for light weight wovens and knits. So if you’re using a knit, the ease is EVEN MORE. I made a XS but my measurements would put me in S. My first attempt at the top had about EIGHT INCHES too much ease. I believe that’s a record for me. In the spirit of Janky June I’m going to have to give Simplicity A+ for the ginormal ease. The extra + for a pattern piece that is not nested with the other sizes and is not labeled with any size at all. A++ Simplicity!! My half-ass solution was to cut off the godet-ish side pieces and attached the back piece to the front.

Simplicity 1107 Side

Too lazy to Photoshop the dog out.

That meant I removed the excess in the godets and removed 8 seam allowances. The back is not as swingy but it’s better than looking like a circus tent.

Simplicity 1107 Back

There’s that dog again. Still too lazy to Photoshop him out.

Lastly check out this fantastic coverstitching. I can’t even blame this on wine or a small earthquake. It was all me. 🙂

Simplicity 1107 Coverstitch

Janky July?

 Since June is nearly over. I vote for Janky July. So who wants to join me in janky sewing?

Jankily yours,

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Link to my Pattern Review.

SBCC Manhattan Trousers

SBCC Manhattan Trousers Finished

OMG Pants Are So Complicated

I’ve made pants before and they always looked great… from the front.  For years I was living in ignorance-is-bliss land.  I sorta knew that I had some issues from the back from the Pattern Review pics that I took and quickly deleted from my camera.  One day I put my ill-fitted big girl pants on and got a full view of this horror show via my 3 way mirror.   I have a tutorial for a 3 way mirror using IKEA mirrors if anyone wants to give it a try. Now that I can see my issues clearer, I can clearly see I was still just as clueless.

3 way mirrorI searched the internet and blog-o-sphere and found very little that pertained to pants fitting and even less about my specific issues.  So I spent some quality time with a very used, older edition of Fitting & Pattern Alteration which as 32 fit adjustments that relates to pants.  The book includes an impressive number of fitting issues from cylindrical-shaped torso to large thighs inside to hyper-extended calves.  The adjustments I thought I needed, in the order that I tackled them:

1. Petite adjustment
2. Inward knee adjustment
3. “Droopy butt” adjustment
4. Other FBA aka Full butt adjustment

Petite Adjustment

Since I’m pear-shaped and petite I had debated between starting with the Sewaholic Thurlow pants or the SBCC Manhattan trousers. It seemed to be easier to pear a petite pattern rather than petite a pear pattern. That’s a tongue twister. I felt like too much that could go wrong when petite-ing lengths; especially the crotch curves.  Adding room for more hips seemed less tricky.  So I started with the SBCC Manhattan Trousers which is already pre-petited for me.  Check that one off the list.


Source: Skinny Bitch Curvy Chick Manhattan Trousers

Inward Knee Adjustment

My podiatrist told me about this issue a long time ago. It basically means my knee caps are not at the middle of my leg but a little more towards my inner leg.

Inward Knees

I had no idea that it would manifest more on the back of the pants. This causes diagonal wrinkles that start at your hips and goes in towards your knee at the inseam. The fix is really strange. You pinch out a wedge at the hip/thigh area to remove the excess at the outer seam. Can’t wrap my head around it but it worked.  The red pattern outline is my pattern overlaid over the green pattern which is the original pattern.

Inward Knee Adjustment

“Droopy Butt” Adjustment

I put “droopy butt” in quotations since I don’t think my rear is droopy. Well.. not yet. Rather the fullness is low. So my bottom is shaped more like a half tear drop than say someone with a “shelf butt”.  The fix is to lower the crotch curve to better match my fullness. Droopy Butt Adjustment

The Other FBA (oFBA)

Last on my list is the other FBA or full butt adjustment. In RTW I’m the person who has to wear a size larger to fit it around my hips/butt area, leaving the waist to be too big and gap-y. It was not attractive. I did my full butt adjustment like many of you do your full bust adjustment. I slashed and spread a wedge shape length-wise and width-wise on each cheek. Don’t slash all the way across, i.e. side seam to side seam because you’ll add crotch length which is a whole different issue. I took some trial of adding, putting them on and looking confusing at myself in the 3 way mirror to figure out how much I needed.

Full Butt Adjustment

Final Thoughts on Fitting

I’m really pleased at how they turned out.  I think Betsy had many sleepless nights after hearing about how many versions of her pant pattern I had made. I assured her it wasn’t the pattern. Betsy wrote a great blog post on fitting pants if you need some sage advice or if you want to see her great Ginger jeans.  The reason why I when through so many versions was that I’m non-standard shape so I had to make more adjustments.  Plus I take them one and a time so I can see when I do X, Y happens.  Instead of I did these 10 things and have no idea what caused the fit to get better or worse.

So here are my pants in red denim that feels like thick paper.  I tried the washing it in Coke trick and it didn’t make a difference.  I have had success with this trick in the past.  Unfortunately, the papery fabric looks horribly wrinkly and makes it look like I have fit issues.  Maybe it’s what Anne of Clothing Engineering is talking about in her post about accuracy of photos.   Though I think I still need some small tweaks, I’ve been very happily wearing them everywhere.

SBCC Manhattan Trousers Front

SBCC Manhattan Trousers Back

Happy sewing,
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