Category Archives: Patterns

ANGELAWOLFJEANS101

Sewing Pattern Alterations – Fitting a Jean Pattern for a Round Stomach

Sewing jeans are really easy once you get the hang of the process, but fitting the pattern can be challenging. The next few posts are going to deal with exactly that, fitting various body shapes. This pattern alteration is needed if you have a fuller stomach, in the old days referred to as an apple shape.  Although, I am not sure where the fruit terms originated from, I really don’t like them.  I would rather be a glass!  Wine glass, red wine glass, martini glass, goblet, water-glass,  I think you get the idea.  It just sounds a little more glamorous than an apple or pear :)    Anyway, if you made up a jean muslin and the pattern fit great in the legs, hips, and tush, but you just can’t get that center front closed … here you go:

Fitting a Jean Pattern for a Round Stomach

1.  Tape the front pocket in place.  Start by drawing lines on your pattern (don’t cut yet):

  • Draw a line (green) across the hip and up to the tip of the side seam.
  • Draw 2 lines (purple) perpendicular to the green line,

Angela Wolf Pattern Alteration 12.   Cut along the green line, cutting up to the side seam put NOT through the edge.

Angela Wolf Pattern Alteration 2

3.  Slide the pattern open.  Look what happens, you just gave a little more room in the front tummy area in the width and height of the pattern.

Angela Wolf Pattern Alteration 3

4.  The upper waist curve is too extreme if left like this.  Cut each purple line, down to the green line, but NOT through it.  Slide each line open until the waist curve angles down more like the original pattern.

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5.  Redraw a new waistline and center front crotch curve (red line).

Angela Wolf Pattern Alteration 5

If you are having difficulty redrawing the front crotch curve, slide the pattern back together.  Mark the bottom edge of the facing area and trim off the front fly facing.  Follow all the steps and then tape the front facing back in place once the new center front is drawn in, lining up the facing with the marking on the pattern.  Draw a line extending the facing up to the waistline  ( I used this pattern piece, because I knew someone would ask about that).

Here is your new front pattern piece, use this for the front and left, of course one will have a front facing section and the other will not.  This is the same alteration for any pant style when you need a little more room in the tummy area.

How are your jeans coming along for March’s wardrobe challenge?  The judges are almost finished with February’s winners, hope to announce them this weekend.

SPECIAL OFFER FROM WAWAK SEWING!

Looking to stock up on jean sewing supplies – zippers, jean thread, jean buttons … WAWAK Sewing is offering $10 off the next order of $80 or more!  This offer is good until March 31st, use PROMO CODE:  WAGW314 when checking out.  What a great treat for the jean challenge!  Thanks WAWAK! :)

That’s all for today :)  Sun is shining and snow is melting, thank goodness!!!!

 

 

March’s Wardrobe Challenge … Sewing Designer Jeans!

wardrobe challenge marchWhat an impressive finish to February’s challenge, Ruching & Shirring. The photos posted on flickr are fabulous!  Take a second and click on over and see what these talented sewer’s came up with, such creativity!  And don’t be surprised if you see one of your photo’s on my blog, I have added  pictures from the wardrobe challenge flickr group to the right side of the page.  The photos randomly change, so enjoy previewing the outfits as they arrive  :)

And the pinterest side of the challenge …  I periodically scan each of your “wardrobe challenge boards” and I must say, my mind is filled with new ideas to add to my apparel, what inspiration!  Don’t forget you can follow each others wardrobe challenge boards, inspire each other to sew :)  February’s winners will be announced soon, the judges are busy at work.  In the meantime, let’s talk jeans …

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March’s Challenge is to design, sew, and restyle jeans.  Many of you have mentioned a fear of sewing jeans.  The fit and the fly are the main concern, guess what – there are great patterns and so many resources to help you along, now it’s time to jump in!

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My online class Sewing Designer Jeans on Craftsy launched last October and we are just shy of 5,000 students.  Now that’s a lot of jean sewer’s  :).  This class walks you through the entire process of sewing jeans from cutting to the final hem.  And just to promote my Wardrobe Challenge, here is a 50% off for the entire month of March.  Worried about fit,  join my Altering Pants class on Patternreview (which is also on sale)  where you can post photo’s of your muslin for personal fitting advice.  Looking for a few free tips, refer to the jean category on my blog.  There are even video tutorials for sewing pockets.  Now you have not excuse not to give it a try.

Patterns

ThereAngela Wolf patterns 2013 -209 are so many jean patterns available now.  My Angel Bootcut Jean Pattern is my go-to pattern, I taper the legs for skinny jeans, raise and lower the rise, offers a contour waistband for fit and it’s easy to adapt denim with stretch or without.  The sizing currently goes up to size 16 (but I promise I am working on the sizing 16W – 24W sometime in 2014).  Use coupon code MARCHMADNESS for 20% off all jean supplies in my store (yes, that includes rivets, jean buttons, and the It’s Sew Easy jean dvd :)).  My two other favorite jean patterns … Jalie and Jennifer Stern’s ( I adore Jennifer, she is my jean buddy).  You can find reviews for both on PatternReview.com.

Well, that’s enough to get started!  This month I will share major fitting solutions for jeans and much, much more.  Check out March’s Wardrobe Challenge page (now located at the top right) for all the details on the pinterest challenge and flickr info.  Are you new to the challenge and need an invite to pinterest, email me info@angelawolf.com.  I would love you to join us!

Did I mention we have a new sponsor, Coats & Clark.  Yeah, just in time for denim thread!   Join me on Twitter to give a shout out of thanks to our sponsors:

angela_wolf_patterns001004  WAWAK sewing, Threads Magazine, Brother Sews, It’s Sew Easy TV, Coats & Clark

Well are you ready to give it a go?   Good luck!!!!!!

xoxo

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How to Prepare & Sew a Jacket Lapel (another giveaway)

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When I asked what part of sewing jackets you find the most intimidating to sew, many of you left a comment about the collar and lapel.  I must have had a premonition, as this week’s episode of It’s Sew Easy gives you a few tips for success.  You are right, the collar and lapel is what really makes your jacket stand out … and the good news …  it’s easier to sew than you think.  In fact, sewing is only a minute part involved in tailoring a collar.  The most time-consuming part involves preparing the center front jacket, upper collar, and under collar pattern pieces with interfacing and twill tape, not to mention pad stitching if you are going the traditional tailoring route.  The weight of the interfacing will determine the thickness and stability of your lapel and collar, so be sure to test a sample first.  My two favorites for jackets are armo-weft fusible interfacing (shown here) and horse hair canvas (perfect if you plan on pad stitching – which I will show in a later blog post).  Fusible interfacing can be added in layers if you need more structure at the end of the lapel, keep that in mind if you interfacing supply is limited.

Despite adding interfacing, extra measures need to be taken to prevent the neckline and center front of the jacket from stretching out.  Twill tape is the perfect solution!  Look closely and you can see hand stitching attaching the 1/4″ wide cotton twill tape to the front edge of the jacket.  As I am hand stitching, I am holding the twill tape tight and allowing the jacket fabric to ease in.  Not too much easing though!  Make sure the jacket doesn’t change shape or become skewed.

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What about that perfect roll on the lapel?  Again, twill tape is hand stitched to the roll line (the roll line should be printed on your jacket pattern)

angela wolf jacket lapel

When hand stitching the twill tape to the roll line, keep the twill tape tight (tighter than when we added twill tape to the center front and neckline).  Again, easing in the fashion fabric.  I use a pin to hold one end of the twill tape and start stitching from the other end.  You can see below how much I am easing!

tailoring jackets angela wolf

Here I started hand stitching the twill tape in place, the main part of the stitch is on the twill tape and I am just picking a short fiber in the fashion fabric, then back through the twill tape.  You can barely see the stitching from the right side of the fabric.  When you are finished steam press the lapel roll using a seam roll.  Again, for more details see this weeks episode of It’s Sew Easy, scroll to the bottom of their page and click on the video.

angela wolf tailoring jacket

Another Giveaway, this one is for my online class:  Sewing a Designer Unlined Jacket on PatternReveiw.com.  Does your favorite jacket style close in the center front or asymmetrically?  Just tell us your preference to enter the jacket class giveaway.  (A random winner will be drawn next Monday)   Congratulations to last weeks winner JRP53 who will be joining me in the  Beginner’s Guide to Sewing Jackets on PatternReview!   Good luck on your jackets!

Cheers :)

Angela Wolf

How to Sew a Curved Welt Pocket

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Getting back to sewing jackets … by any chance did you happen to catch last weeks episode on It’s Sew Easy TV where I demonstrated adding a curved welt pocket.  Welt pockets can be a little intimidating because once you cut into the garment, you can’t change your mind! In case you missed the episode, here is a quick recap:

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1.  Interface the entire jacket front and side front  pattern pieces (not only does that prevent the fabric from fraying, it supports the pocket).  Similar to a standard welt pocket, take two bias strips of fashion fabric, add fusible interfacing, and press in half.  Draw the curve line of the pocket onto the right side of the fashion fabric.  Turn the welts with the fold side away from the chalked in line (or make sure the raw edges are touching) and stitch along the center of the welt flap.  Notice how I have  also chalk marked the ends of the pocket opening.

IMG_19062.  Turn the jacket over and on the wrong side of the garment you will see the stitch lines (I obviously used a yellow thread so you can see this :)).  Starting about 1″ in from one end of the stitching, cut into the fashion fabric.  Cut right in the middle of the stitch lines and end the cut about 1″ before the other stitch end.  Going back to the 1″ that we left alone, snip each corner from the cut line to the edge of the stitch line.  Do this for all four corners - as shown above.

3.  (See below) What is left is a slit with each welt on each side.  Pull the welts through the open slit, toward the wrong side of the fabric.

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Angela Wolf Curved Welt Pocket Fashion Sewing

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4.  Align the welts and press.  Run a basting stitch through the fold of each welt.  Now the pocket opening won’t slide around while finishing the pocket.

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5.  Topstitch 1/8″ from the edge of the welt pocket.  The pocket shown above is a straight welt style, yet the topstitching you see would be the same on the curved welt.  Add the pocket lining.  That’s it!

This weeks It’s Sew Easy episode demonstrates preparing the jacket collar and lapel.  Have you been following along and sewing your own jacket?  On that note, I better giveaway another one of my online jacket classes:  Beginner’s Guide to Sewing Jackets on PatternReview.  Entering to win is easy, leave a comment below about what you find the most intimidating about sewing jackets.  (A random winner will be drawn on Friday).

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Don’t forget ALL my PatternReview online classes are on sale for the rest of the week.  Why?  Just a special thanks to all of you that support my teaching.  Speaking of support, thanks to your votes in the Craftsy 2013 Blogger Awards, we won Runner-Up for Sewing Best Instructor’s Blog!  You all are awesome!!!! Thanks :)

Congratulations to Stephani the winner of my PatternReview class Create a Jacket Muslin !

 

Cheers!

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Sewing Your Own Wardrobe and ONLINE CLASS SALE on PatternReview.com!

Angela Wolf Pattern Collection Butler TrenchThere is only one reason I have not moved South in order to enjoy beautiful sunny weather all year round … jackets and boots!  This is the time of year I rearrange my wardrobe, bringing out all the cute jackets I finished last March and never had a chance to wear (remember in the fashion industry we are always designing a season ahead).   Of course while I am pulling out the fall wardrobe, out come the fabulous boots.  I LOVE shoes!   I sew all my own clothes, I have to find something to shop for besides fabric :)

Speaking of sewing all my own clothes, about 15 years ago I set a goal of only wearing clothes I had sewn myself.  It was a great idea, but hardly possible.  I spent all my time sewing custom garments for clients and I could never find time to sew for myself.  You know, like the shoemaker that wears worn-out shoes.  Those of you that are in the sewing business know exactly what I am talking about.

Once I started designing a ready-to-wear line and a pattern collection for the home sewer, I found a perfect reason to sew for myself.  Someone has to test the fit, right :)  Over the last few years I have been adding my label to the closet with jeans, tops, jackets, dresses, skirts, slacks,  … In fact last night after admiring my organized closet (now is the time to admire, it never seems to stay that way very long), I realized I finally accomplished my goal!  Every garment carried the Angela Wolf label.  I could hardly believe it!  In fact, once you get going on sewing for yourself, the outfits flow in much faster than you think.  Have you ever had the desire to sew all your own clothes?  I challenge you to try.  I am going to celebrate this accomplishment and try to focus on doing the same for the spring wardrobe swap.  I feel a 2014 wardrobe sew along coming on … what do you think?
Vote for me for Craftsy's blogger awards!
In the last post, I mentioned how thankful I am to all of you readers and a special thanks to those that voted my blog into the finals for the category sewing – best instructor blog for the 2013 Craftsy Blogging Awards.  Voting in the final round is still going on, so make sure to vote for your favorites again  (hint, hint).   I couldn’t think of a better way to thank you than give away a few online classes, which I will do over the next few weeks.

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Not everyone can win, so I asked my friend Deepika – founder of PatternReview.com – to place all my online classes on sale for the rest of the month.  In case you haven’t visited the site, PatternReview.com is a great website for learning and connecting with other garment sewer’s.  I offer quite a few classes there, including sewing jackets.  No, my jacket patterns are not ready to launch yet, so this is the next best thing.  The next few giveaways will be for my online classes.  The first one is Create a Jacket Muslin on PatternReview.  Creating a perfect fitting muslin is the most important part of sewing a jacket.   If you would like a chance to join my class on sewing a muslin where I offer fitting tips, solutions, and you can even upload photos of your muslin for personal fitting advice, simply share a comment about your experience in fitting jackets.  Never sewn a jacket, even better reason to start with the muslin class (a random winner will be chosen and announced next Friday).  Speaking of jackets, have you been watching season 5 on It’s Sew Easy and following along as I sew a jacket?  If your PBS doesn’t carry It’s Sew Easy, you can catch a new episode every week on their website.

Good Luck ;)

xoxo

Angela Wolf

A BIG THANK YOU!!!!

Vote for me for Craftsy's blogger awards!I woke up this morning to an email that made me very happy and I have YOU to thank :)  Just so you know, you made my day!!!!!  In case you missed it, Craftsy is holding their 2013 blogging awards.  Round one of voting is finished and your votes placed my blog into the finals in the category of Sewing – Best Craftsy Instructor Blog.  There are only 4 of us and now another round of voting continues until October 29th – Of course I am hoping you will vote again :)

First, let me tell you how encouraging this was to hear.  Writing a blog and posting video tutorials does take up quite a bit of time, but I personally do so in order to  encourage you to sew.  Not only sew, but to sew clothes and sew clothes that look like they walked out of a boutique with a high price tag.  I have been sewing my own clothes for over 20 years (that just gives me a reason to buy more shoes and handbags LOL) and I love sharing what I have learned with you.

So what happens now?  There is a final round of voting that will end on October 29th and Craftsy is offering a free class to one of the lucky voters.  For me, I already feel like a winner.  As a special thank you for the support you have already shown and encouragement for you to vote again during these final weeks (bribery never hurts right :)) I am going to offer a few giveaways. Angela Wolf Bootcut Jean

Recently I offered a free Crafty class to my new Sewing Designer Jeans class that will launch later this month and a huge CONGRATULATIONS to the winner Marie C..  Well, the class doesn’t include a pattern.  Why?  Because maybe you copied your favorite pair in Kenneth D. Kings class or you already have a favorite jean pattern from my friend Jennifer Stern or you like the range of sizes in Jalie … just to name a few of my favorite reasons.  During the class, I will be using my  Angel Bootcut Jean pattern (my current pattern includes misses sizes 0 – 16 and I am diligently working on the women’s sizes 16W - 24W) and I even show you how to alter the pattern for a higher or lower waist (amongst other fitting issues).  So, it only seems appropriate to giveaway one of my jean patterns.  How can you win?  Pretty simple – let me know why you want to sew my jean pattern and please vote in the final round on Craftsy (remember you can win a free class on Craftsy just for voting).  Afraid of sewing jeans – no worries, it’s really easy.  Remember back when I showed you videos on how to sew pockets.  There are lots more, just scroll through my posts about sewing jeans.  I will announce the winner of jeans pattern on Monday and I will announce another “thank you” giveaway tomorrow.

Again, THANK YOU so much for making my day today :)  xoxo Angela

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Sewing Designer Jeans FREE CLASS Craftsy Giveaway!

sewing deisgner jeans with Angela Wolf

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I know you usually don’t hear about my new classes until the day they start, but not with this one!  Sewing designer jeans will start later this month on Craftsy and I am offering a FREE CLASS to one lucky winner. This class will take you from A to Z in sewing your own designer jeans.    Click here to enter!  (The contest closes at midnight on Sunday, October 6, 2013) and the winner will be announced next week.  Good luck!

So how did the shoot go?  Well, I was in Denver for the torrential downfall and it was heart wrenching to see the damage shown on the local news.  Fortunately downtown Denver fared with very little flooding despite the many dark, rainy days.

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The Craftsy studio has been redesigned since my last taping Creative Serging and I had a great team to work with!  The set was equipped with the best of the best, including the Brother DreamWeaver XE Innovis-VM6200D sewing machine.  Although these are long days of taping, when you are having fun, the hours fly by.

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Below you can see 3 of the best jean tools in the sewing room … a pink hammer, sand paper, and a tailor’s clapper.  Not only will this class walk you through sewing a pair of designer jeans, I show you how to distress the jeans as you go.  Once you sew a pair of stylish jeans that fit perfectly, you will be hooked!  Enter to win a free class today.

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The blog has been a little quiet lately as I have been traveling A LOT lately … taping with Craftsy, It’s Sew Easy TV, and Threads magazine.  I will be back tomorrow with more photo’s and inside scoop on what’s coming out soon.   While you are at it … Craftsy is asking about your favorite blogs.  I would love your vote  :)    Cheers, xoxo Angela

“Contemporary Couture Jacket” Online Class on PatternReview.com

Angela Wolf sewing couture jacketA well-made jacket can show off an outfit to its best.  Join me on PatternReview  for the fundamentals and fine points of creating a contemporary couture jacket (hint: my version of the traditional Chanel jacket).

You’ll love the comfort and style of this jacket… it feels more like a sweater! It’s the perfect topper for jeans or more formal dress.  This couture jacket is a must-have for the modern lifestyle!

The class offers 12 videos with 2 hours and 45 minutes of HD video.  There is also a 164 page PDF file with photos and close up details of every step.

  • Selecting fabric and lining.
  • Creating a 3-piece sleeve, laying out the pattern, and cutting the fashion fabric.
  • Attaching fusible interfacing, finishing the edges, and cutting the lining.
  • Using a couture technique to quilt the lining.
  • Sewing a jacket with a plaid.
  • Preparing and hand-stitching the lining.
  • Sewing the sleeve vent and attaching sleeves.
  • Covering shoulder pads.
  • Trim ideas, including a tutorial on how to crochet your own trim!
  • Closure options including custom covered buttons.
  • Pockets with a couture touch.
  • And last but not least, adding the prestigious weighted chain.

  Join me :)

Thinking you don’t have time for a few hours of hand-stitching a couture jacket?  Why not bring the jacket with you!  Seriously, I hand-stitched the lining on this jacket while fishing (see the finished jacket below).  The lining is hand-dyed (and not with fish blood and guts :))    Fishing and sewing might be an odd combo, but it worked.  How about you, any fun sewing stories that can beat fishing?  Now be nice :)   Cheers xoxo Angela

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Fabric Manipulation … The Trend of 2013

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I have a new fetish for altering fabrics and I am on a mission to test some new and old techniques and see if they will fit into high-end fashion.  Embroidery is definitely high on the list,  and I am not talking about embroidered bunny’s on the front of my sweatshirt or his and her towel’s (although I have to practice somewhere  :)   I am more thinking about using embroidery to create new fabrics and using that fabric in my garments.  A few ideas I am going to try:

  • attaching two unusual textures
  • quilting silk charmeuse
  • sleeve embellishment
  • embroidered jeans
  • embroidery + needle felting
  • distressing
  • adding faux fur
  • shirring

Just a touch of ideas and I am going to give them a try over the summer, looking into my fall wardrobe.  I don’t expect them all to be a success, but I know this will be fun!  So to kick off my experiment I thought I better learn how to embroider.  These jeans were my first embroidery project last May, not too shabby if I don’t say so myself.  The jean  pattern is an altered version of my Angel Bootcut Jean and the embroidery design I created on Brother’s Dreamweaver  .  Trust me, I had no idea what I was doing but these new embroidery machines tell you what to do!

I sewed the jeans in a little different order starting with the front and back pockets and then the outside seam.  A bit of a risk, after all that work, that the embroidery turns out awful.  Looking back,  you would think I would have tested the design on something, even a scrap of fabric.  I am too stubborn for that.  Each leg took 3 hooping’s and at first the total embroidery hours for both legs was tallying up to be 26 1/2 hours … YIKES!  Then I realized that each color would only embroider for a few minutes and I would have to keep changing threads (this is only a one thread embroidery machine, in case you might think I have the fancy one).   I decided to change the order of color, even if it altered the final design.

The embroidery design:  I changed the design from being a little larger in the top (1st hooping) a little smaller in the middle (second hooping) and really small at the ankle (third hooping).  Minus a few mistakes (which I won’t point out :)) I was really pleased with the final results.

One thing I learned with embroidering stretch denim – after you embroider, the denim doesn’t stretch.  Just keep that in mind and make alterations to your pattern to allow for that non-stretch, especially if you are sewing skinny jeans or jeggings.  I am planning on embroidering another pair of jeans with all one color of thread, I am thinking black fabric with silver thread or something along that line.

Any embroidery tips for me would be greatly appreciated, I have a lot of fabric I want to try (especially silk charmeuse).  There is so much to learn and take into account.  For example, embroidery thread.  There are a ton of choices, any advice on the what’s the best and why?  I would love to know the scoop!

Until then,

Cheers!

Angela

The Skinny Bell Jean #AW4211  Angela Wolf

How to Hem Jeans with the Brother MuVit Digital Dual Feed Foot

Dark jeans are really in trend this fall so that means distressing with a hammer might not be an option.  I have tested the MuVit Digital Dual Feed Foot on the Brother Dreamweaver XE and believe it or not, after sewing over many thick seams there was not one skipped stitch!  The only thing I added was a #14 denim jean needle and various thicknesses of denim.  This foot is different from a walking foot, not only because it has a rolling belt, but the foot plugs into the sewing machine giving the foot it’s own brain … or something like that.  You can then adjust the foot by pressing a few buttons on the sewing machine.  I have to say technology is really making sewing fun and easy!

The video below shows you just how smooth this digital dual feed foot works and I even tested it on one of my new jean patterns.  Which by the way,   I am happy to announce my first two jean patterns are up and available!  Both patterns come with detailed sewing instructions in a book format, very easy to follow.  The other bonus that comes with both of these jean patterns is a downloadable PDF file, download to your tablet and you can enlarge the photos for detailed viewing.  The PDF file offers color photos and details on where to distress the jeans as you sew.  My goal is to help you sew jeans that fit perfect and look expensive :)  Enjoy and don’t forget about the previous videos on sewing jean pockets if you need a little extra help.  Hope you had a great Thanksgiving weekend, lot’s of family, food and shopping on my end.  Wait until you see my new shoes (and yes that’s plural!)  xoxo Angela

   

www.AngelaWolfPatterns.com

Brother™ has provided me with the DreamWeaver XE, but all opinions expressed are entirely my own.