Sorry about this stupid nav tray -- I hate it, but maybe you love it and then I'm sorry I said I'm sorry.

Anyway. Here's a collection of work and projects from science writing to poetry. 

A note about the blog title: in math and physics, the prefix eigen means one's own. It comes from the german, but mostly I always liked thinking about a particle's eigenvalues, and thought I might apply the same thought to my excursions.

I like short shorts

I like short shorts

Man, Matthew just rules so much sometimes. I don't know what we were talking about, but offhandedly he mentioned that I could probably make some shorts with the fabric I had leftover from my Ginger jeans. Which, duh. I hadn't even considered this idea and was honestly just thinking I'd eventually make, like, a jean jacket with leftover jean bits? But actually, even after making shorts I still have plenty of this black S-gene denim for such things. Matthew is a genius.

happy gigner jean shorts

this is my issue all over

So based on my last time round and the experience of wearing my jeans, I knew I absolutely had to make an adjustment to the back of the pattern. Referring mostly to the various Closet Case resources on pants fitting, I had to make an adjustment to the gaping waistband and the sway back. 

Ultimately, I chose to slice the back pattern piece up to a pivot point on the seam line along the lengthen/shorten line, then rotate the pattern to overlap 1 cm, as per the Sasha Trousers fitting tips... and I'm sure a bunch of other internet resources. Hopefully, This will address both issues?

The option of vertically pinching out excess I think I'll save for when I actually baste these and see how they fit. 

I also needed to move my seamline back on the inside leg. Not needed-needed, but I think the process of pin-fitting at the outside seams ended up pulling it just a touch further forward than I wanted. So I trimmed off 1/4 inch from the back pattern's inner curve, and then directly taped that to the front leg. Of course, I trimmed the paper here and there to get the curve to sit right, but this felt like a good quick & dirty way to make the change I wanted without accidentally altering shape.

Alterations complete, I cut everything out with my rotary cutter. I'm realizing that because I used the selvedge to line up grainline, I've now cut off all the selvedge (the other side went with the original jeans), so whatever I make next should be a bit of an adventure in grainline. Not that I'm the most careful person in the world about that, though.

I used stretchy knit interfacing for this project, and actually have gotten it to bond properly. I can't remember what I did last time but it was obviously wrong. This time I used a baby burp cloth/blanket/absorbent cotton-towel think, dampened, and ironed on hot over that. So I should remember to do that for next time. 

And then I could actually sew some of these! So on a night that the child was asleep gloriously early (by 9 p.m.), I set into my sewing, happily assembling front pockets first. 

However, unlike Matthew, I am not a genius. I reaaaaally did these wrong. 


Yep, I attached my pocket lining to the wrong part of the pocket -- not the stay. And figured this out for sure after completing top stitching. So that makes three rows of stitching to unpick at the pocket opening, plus where the lining and the facing are attached. Fun!

Honestly, it felt wrong while I was working on it, but I kept reminding myself that doing these felt wrong last time and just to trust the instructions! But... well, last time I used the Closet Case video class to do these. This time I used the pattern instructions, and apparently was looking at the regular pocket, not pocket stay, instructions, and got it all screwy from there. But looking back, now I can't remember if it was the fly or the stays that felt wrong.

stretched out bobbin just stuck there. 

stretched out bobbin just stuck there. 

Either way, worked out just lovely once I unpicked and redid the instructions. Although.... my right side of my pockets is on the inside. Ohhhhh well. And for awhile I thought I wasn't going to get my newly wound bobbin off the winder... it went horribly malformed and had to be completely rid of thread to come off. LOOK AT THIS MONSTROSITY! 

As Matthew pointed out, this way it will be MUCH easier to show people the pretty lining than, you know, unbuttoning my pants "this isn't weird" style. 

So on to a baste fit to see what that sway back edit got me. 

In all my pattern editing I forgot my note-to-self to let out side seams a 1/4 inch, so it's looking a little tighter than I'd like. So...

pattern editing.jpg

OK, to me it looks like the side seam issue is fixed, but it's introduced/made me notice some space still happening at back. I got Matthew to pin out what needs to come out, then transfered to the paper pattern to remove from both the yoke and the waistband. To do this, I folded out the seam allowance and aligned both pieces, then transferred the removal to paper. I'm darting out a cm on each side here from the top of the waistband, down to nothing at the bottom of the yoke. As you can see, I've already done this to the waistband pattern piece from last time, when I pinched out the sides. This waistband is getting HELLA curved! 

Rather than cut and baste again (I figured I wouldn't want to use any more fabric on this and didn't want to do the messy darting out from the existing piece tests I'd done last time), it was time to move along. 

front topstitching

Putting the fly went together beautifully, with the exception of one time I faked myself out thinking I'd done it wrong but had just not finished yet. Top stitching got a little wobbly, as it does. This time I traced in where I wanted the inner line of topstitching first, which saved me any diceyness with the bottom of the zip. A couple of nice bar tacks added after this picture I think disguise/distract from any concerns. 

The new backs came together smoothly, even with trying to flat-fell the increased curvature. I don't know why, but the yoke flat-fell and topstitching worked out as well as I could have hoped (center) for but the center back seam went wildly wonky. And that was the easy one! Everything looks fine to my eye on the outside though. 

inner waistband ginger jeans

The remainder of construction was straightforward and mostly by the book. I topstitched from top to bottom on the side-seam, as there were no pant legs to block me. 

I used a bit of scrap viscose leftover from my Esther pants to line the waistband, which I like because it's not stretchy at all and is soft as heck. A bit of a shifty switch from jean material! 

I don't really know how, but the waistband came up short only on the right side. I didn't really register that this was a problem until I'd sewn on over my basting stitches, and wasn't in the mood to unpick since the waistband was fitting nicely. So I sort of just improvised. Good thing this is the hidden bit of the waistband, but actually I don't really mind the look! 

As usual, topstitching didn't catch the waistband perfectly, so I did two rows, and while still not perfect, it's solid. If I do a shifty inner again I might try to take the time to handstitch the lining in place.

And moment of truth for fitting: much improved!! 

ginger jeans but fit
2018-07-16 17.27.37.jpg

I dug through my garbage scrap bag to find four of the belt loops I elected to not use on the last pair, and I had no interest in making new ones so there's no center back loop but who needs functional belt loops when their jeans fit perfectly?

Last niggly bits: I probably shouldn't have cut these so so short, because I'd like a bit more crotch coverage for sitting cross legged and a bit more wiggle room for how/where to cut them. But they feel summery and good. I'm very happy with the bias tape on the fly shield this time around. There's still a touch more denim left, so I have plans...

Pattern: High Waisted Ginger Jeans
Size: My edited personal size
Fabric: Leftover black S-gene 10 oz denim (Cone Mills) from my first Ginger Jeans. Pockets are gifted fabric a friend found at Value Village, the bias tape i made from scraps, and the waistband facing is leftovers from the Esther Pants. Used the jeans kit from Blackbird in Antique Silver for hardware.
If there is a next time: Use the baby burp cloth/blankets for soaking and ironing on fusible interfacing! Trust your gut when something feels reeeeally wrong. Pattern changes: Add 1/4 inch to outer seam. Take another horizontal wedge out for sway back, this time from yoke. Add 1 inch to curved waistband piece. Hand stitch waistband facing in place for a cleaner look. For shorts, go a bit longer for wiggle room. I want to center my pockets around the topstitching, not the center line, and use larger pockets. 

yay new jean shorts


Lithium-ion battery research at SGM

Lithium-ion battery research at SGM

Flower Architecture

Flower Architecture