Sunday, February 6, 2011

I'm just a girl... a girl with really long pants...

Today's post is a cross between frivolous, and silly.  But I never know if someone out there will relate, so why not post something a little bit frivolous every now and again.  And yes... this is exactly the kind of hard-hitting journalism you can count on for the next four weeks while I pack up all of my possessions.  Stay tuned... you won't want to miss a post.  (snicker.)
No matter what I do, every pair of jeans I buy is way too long for my 5'1" frame. (Even the ones they label as "short."  Whatevs.) It drives me crazy, but I've also learned some tricks on how to make a hem job look alright over the years of shortening hundreds of pairs of jeans.... On this pair, I mimicked the inner stitching with a double straight stitch.  Things like that make a hem job look a little more intentional.  (And yes, I know I could pay to have this done, but it only takes a few minutes, so why?)
Second step.  Steam iron those babies nice and crisp. 
Then roll them tightly... and grab a piece of 100 grit sandpaper. 
Sand lightly, across the edges, until you've got it all roughed up. 
You can see the difference between the top (un-sanded) and bottom cuff.
I know.  Blows the mind a little bit, huh?

Tomorrow I'll show you how to use toothpaste as spackle.  Oh, I'm just joking... 

Please don't leave.  Please? 
  

49 comments:

Gail @ Faithfulness Farm said...

My 5'1" self needed this post :)

Blessings!
Gail

A Thrifted Market said...

Are you kidding me?? You are too creative! I am 5'3 and jeans are always long on me but I don't want them dragging the ground..this is great!! Off to sew some jeans..woohoo!!

CurlyGirly said...

oh, this is so funny. i just got a pair of jeans (i usually have gotten my designer jeans hemmed) from target, some william rast for target on clearance, and they are waaaay to long. i was going to google search how to sew hem them and still use the original bottoms, but after seeing your post, i will just do it myself!!

~tiff

NaomiG said...

I interviewed for a seamstress job at a super expensive denim store one time, and as part of my interview I had to learn how to hem their way. They ended up not firing the seamstress they were going to fire, but I was thrilled about the whole thing cuz learning about their denim hemming was worth it. They just have you cut off the hem, and then trim the legs to the length you need, and sew the original hem back on. I blew their mind when I used invisible thread and tacked the seam allowance down, it turned out really awesome, if I do say so myself. That being said, I really like your way too--the sandpaper is genius. I never would have thought of that. :-)

Um... I use toothpaste as spackle ALL. THE. TIME. Are we long lost sisters?

Joybird said...

Well this is the hard hitting journalism your readers have been waiting for. I knew you had it in you. As a girl who is not quite 5'1" (even though my driver's license says 5'2" but that has more to do with the unrealistic hopes of a 16 yr old and a CA DMV bureaucracy that won't change more than anything else and my jeans know the truth) this is necessary information. On behalf of petite women everywhere, thank you.

Joybird said...

Oh...and toothpaste makes excellent spackle in a pinch. I agree, probably just another short girl tip.

Alicia said...

oh you are goofy girl! i have the opposite issue...i'm really tall and have to look forever to find long jeans...oh, the torture of shopping :)

Kim @ Sand and Sisal said...

You crack me up! Love the tip!!!

Carmen said...

LOL! Love the tip, though! And...um...toothpaste as spackle? Worked on dorm room walls...but I wouldn't ever know that! ; )

Julie said...

I have a pair of jeans that have been waiting forever to be hemmed! I wasn't sure I was ready to try doing an original hem. I'm going to give this a try! Thank you!

Julie said...

I have a pair of jeans that have been waiting forever to be hemmed! I wasn't sure I was ready to try doing an original hem. I'm going to give this a try! Thank you!

danae said...

what a great idea! i always need to hem my jeans [and rarely take the time to...], & i would have never thought of distressing them with sandpaper! not frivolous - super helpful!

LeAnna said...

Okay, the ad at the bottom of this post is HILARIOUS. Get bigger butt jeans, I'm cracking up. Her hind end looks like somebody pumped it full of air.

ANYWAY - I'm tucking this in the back of my mind for future reference. In case I ever need to hem a pair of jeans. I wonder if this same method would make a pair of too short jeans into capris?

Jade said...

oh my gosh! best post ever! this is pretty much why I follow your blog--because I don't want to miss it when you throw something awesome and helpful out there! Thanks for all of your nifty tips and great ideas!

Angi said...

Girl, I love this. I'm 4'11" and always tear my hems to shreds. You are a genius my dear!

Anne said...

You petite people are very clever. :)

Sincerely,
Your 5'10" Blog Friend

Cheryl said...

You are so cute.
I have the opposite problem . . . always looking for the LONG pants! (can you make them longer for me??)
Love the sandpaper idea!

Valerie@chateaualamode.typepad.com said...

You are so cute! I love the sandpaper idea...genius.

Seizing My Day said...

I am nearly 5'4" and let me tell you... right dab in the middle of short and regular... SO annoying... wanna know my secret to the perfect pair of jeans? MENS! ha ha! they make mens jeans by inches... GO figure! how hard is that for a designer of womens jeans?? sheesh!!

seriously... I love Men's Levi's ... button fly... which happens to be the rage again... (finally after 20 years) ha ha... I have two pairs and I live in them... 30 inch legs... perfect fit for this chick! Otherwise I cry when my petite jeans shrink and sigh when I have to sew regulars!! I love your hem trick.... I will use it .. when the Levis' button flys are gone from the shelf again! ;)

Julianne Hendrickson said...

Too funny! I am 5'9 and find it hard to get jeans that are long enough in the first place! But, I love the sandpaper...you are hysterical.

paige said...

who knew?
seriously


xo

Leen said...

Sandpaper! Of course! You, my friend, are a genius!

SaraJk said...

I'm 5'10" and have my first pair of Jeans that I need hemmed, but was said because I love the distressing on the bottom...THANK YOU for this fab idea!!!

xoxo Sara

Patty@sewingseeds said...

Okay, another Amen from the peanut (as in short) gallery. I have lived all my 49 years without this little bit of knowledge. My hemmed jeans will feel like the outcast no more! Cute post...I needed the giggle. Can't wait to see what next hard hitting journalism you have waiting for us next.

Shell in your Pocket said...

You are are so funny!!!

I would never ever ever think of this one!

sandy toe

Melanie said...

I'm pretty sure we were sisters in another life. You make me laugh everyday! Thanks
Melanie

Peters said...

LOVE this. Who would have ever thought of using sand paper? Well, I guess you did. I am so going to try this. Yesterday at church I was stepping on my jeans even though I wore shoes with heels!
Thanks for the laugh and the great tip.
I adore your blog.

Adam and Natalie said...

Love the double straight stitch! So professional and genius with the sandpaper. Thanks for the tips!

Stephanie said...

This is perfect! I'm 5'5.5" and while that may seem like a good height, it's right there in between average and tall. Average jeans become highwaters after the second wash. Tall jeans have 3 inches of extra fabric. But yours look extra fabulous!!

Kelli said...

Is it said that I was intrigued by the toothpaste comment because we are in need to re-spackle. That is a great way to make the jeans customized...way to go!

jociegal said...

Very nice work! I usually have the opposite problem (even though I am only 5' 6") but you did make them look profesh!!!

Heather said...

I have used the sandpaper trick many times for jeans Sasha - also I LOVE my Jean-a-ma-jig for this kind of sewing through multiple layers of heavy fabrics! It is just a simple piece of plastic (about $3) but it makes hemming jeans a breeze! Also, often the thread for topstitching is heavier than your classic all purpose thread, and of course the stitch length is a bit longer too, so I use upholstery thread in gold or white to match, and a 'jean' heavy duty machine needle to make the job look like the pros!
Also, RIT used to make a fabulous but very smelly product called 'Fast Fade' to give that vintage/distressed look to jeans, but they stopped making it. I have used rock salt and a wet pumice stone to get the same results. It works and instead of distressing the whole garment you can just do the areas you want to do.
Can you tell I made my spending money all through college hemming jeans? I do them for our Pastor's kids sometimes too since his wife doesn't sew.
In our house, we don't need to shorten jeans - I have a terrible time finding them long enough! The cool distressed look is easy too - one wear by our 10 year old boy and they are perfectly vintage!

Andrea said...

Gosh I wish it was that easy for me to add those inches you don't need to the bottom of my jeans. Its extrememly hard for me to find jeans for my abnormally long legs. I wear a 37 1/2"-38" inseam! Yep, very abnormal. I guess I am jealous cause I want to be a girl with really long pants ;)

Farmgirl Paints said...

Short stuff, you are just too smart for your britches...literally!

Arriving said...

Had some jeans hemmed recently but they just didn't look right. It's the distressing! Thank you for pointing that out, I'm off to scavenger sand paper...

shetreks said...

Ha--at a tad over 5'0'' tall I'm feeling this post big time! You're doing far better than I am...I just whip out the iron-on hemming tape, eyeball the length, and start pressing away!

Preppy Mama said...

Ok, this post made me smile! I am 5' nothin' and I can NEVER find a pair of jeans my length. They always need to be hemmed. I have paid a fortune over the years in having the original hems put on them. Love this trick! Why haven't I thought of it?!

Jessica at Kids Napping? I'm Scrapping! said...

You know? I've hemmed my pants before, but they just didn't look right, and I never thought about sanding the edges! That would surely make them look "right!"
You are such a genius.

Flower Patch Farmgirl said...

Why, this Big Move has turned you into a GENIUS!!

Flower Patch Farmgirl said...

ps - Any great ideas for making them longer???

Sheri said...

awesome. loving your post. you have the best ideas :) good luck on the move :)

Kristi said...

Love it. I needed a blog like today. Thank you.

Jamie said...

AT 5'11 I have the exact opposite problem.

Your writing cracks me up. Have a blessed day.

Annika said...

you are amazing!! My pants are always long too, but I could never do THAT!

Mandy said...

How clever are you! I suffer the same dilemma, all jeans are way to long - as I am not so handy with a sewing machine, they are hauled off to a tailor - such a pain. I love the idea of sand papering the bottoms!!!

Dandy said...

Girl, you know I'm shorter than you. That is genius and I really am glad you posted it.

Mrs. C... said...

Very cleaver indeed! I like the idea of sanding the jeans, I need to find some sandpaper. However, dear friend I don't understand "Hemming" pants. I have the exact opposite problem. I have jeans that are "for flip flops only" and a very few I can wear with any heal. It isn't easier on the other side of the coin. Just so ya know!

thaisharlow said...

Absolutely necessary information!
I found your blog through Tip Junkie a few days ago. LOVE IT!! Good luck on your move.

Catherine said...

I'm also 5'1" and I buy my jeans at Rue 21 or Aeropostale. I have to buy them in "short" but I don't have to roll them up. :)