Second Muslin Pair of “Jeans”

Once my pattern was complete, I wanted to make another pair of test “jeans” out of muslin before diving into actual denim. Since this was my first attempt at drafting a custom pattern, I was a little nervous that maybe the pattern wouldn’t come together properly. I needed to make sure that the fit was right, and well…that it could actually be sewn.

Prior to this, I always had a set of instructions and the various markings on the commercial patterns I had sewn to guide me. This time around I was completely on my own, which actually made the sewing process more enjoyable. It was quite freeing to not worry about following a set of instructions, and to just assemble these practice jeans in the way that made the most sense.

To my surprise, everything went together flawlessly. They fit well through the leg, crotch, and butt area. I had a little extra room in the waste band, which could easily be fixed in the pattern. The only detail I left off this pair that I would put on a denim pair is rivets. I went ahead and put on the fly buttons for practice. As I mentioned in the pattern making post, I wanted to learn how to make a button fly. I used David Page Coffin’s book Making Trousers for Men and Women to figure out how a button fly is constructed. The book has a section on button flies that was very helpful with step by step instructions.

My top stitching through the fly area could still use some work, but this was a practice pair, and I wasn’t too concerned with making them look perfect. Here is the back side.

I want to make these back pockets a bit bigger on a denim pair, but the overall shape is fine. The top stitching across the back pockets is supposed to make a somewhat abstract pair of “T’s.”

Other than taking a little extra room out of the waste area, my pattern doesn’t need to be modified in any way. I have spent sooooo much time designing the pattern and test fitting that I am really looking forward to cutting into some real denim.

Time to roll out the good stuff!

8 Responses to “Second Muslin Pair of “Jeans””

  1. Pingback: Selvedge Denim Jeans — TaylorTailor

  2. jIMMY — May 27, 2010 @ 1:39 am

    Wow taylor as a aspiring fashion student this is brilliant, I really have hope now.. I kind of in a situation where I unable to finish my degree, I’ve decided to not let that stop me so I’m now venturing on my own. I’m taking a few tech courses on sewing and pattern making but its long and tiring.. I felt like giving up but your blog showed me that its not impossible.

    thanks bro.

  3. Taylor — May 27, 2010 @ 9:05 am


    Thanks for checking out my blog! I say just dive in and go for it. Do what you are passionate about and produce work that you are proud of. Definitely don’t give up. Stick with it and you will be surprised at how much you can learn/accomplish.


  4. Jody — August 3, 2010 @ 12:40 am

    Hi Taylor,

    Wow you have done a marvelous job with the jeans. I’m in the process of making a pair myself. My only problem is I don’t know how to make a fly button. I’ve googled everything but couldn’t find a step by step solution. Your book sounds like what I need to read. Where would I find it? I live in NZ is it available online?


  5. Taylor — August 3, 2010 @ 8:53 am

    Thanks! Yes, the book is available through The author is David Page Coffin. Here is a direct link:

    I modified his technique a little bit to make it work for jeans. The example in his book is for a pair of dress pants, but the instructions can easily be modified for other purposes, including jeans. The other option is to take apart an old pair of pants that have a button fly to examine how the fly is constructed.

    Let me know if I can help in any other way.


  6. Isaac — March 11, 2011 @ 2:04 pm

    I have been drafting my own pattern using a pair of jeans that I have. everything has been successful so far, but I would like to purchase some denim that is worthy of my pattern. I’d like to find some that is very soft and “designer” quality, but I have no idea where to look. Perhaps 6- to 8-oz denim.

    What kind of denim do you use and where do you find it?

  7. Kevin — March 18, 2011 @ 7:23 pm

    I have tried once (unsuccessfully) to make my own jeans. The stitching was OK, the zipper went in OK, etc. Everything was on track, but they just didn’t fit right. I should have been more adventuresome and at least altered the pattern I was working with, if not just used it for a basis to make my own. Your blog gives me hope that I will eventually make a pair that will have the look I want. I think the only factor lacking is patience. Kevin

  8. Taylor — March 18, 2011 @ 9:48 pm


    I think one of the biggest challenges when trying to make your own clothes is the fit. There are countless books written about fitting. You are right in that patience is the key. Sometimes it takes several (maybe more) practice garments to work out all of the fit issues. You definitely hone your sewing skills testing out new versions of a pattern.

    Just stick with it and give yourself some time. I am still adjusting the fit of my jeans and shirts, even after I thought I had a perfect pattern. The most important part is that you are enjoying the process. Happy sewing!

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