The New Forty # 10 and 11


20 Apr The New Forty # 10 and 11

If pink is the new black then I’m in luck πŸ™‚

IMG_0085Seriously, I can wear my new Jalie Eleonore Pull-On Jeans everyday of the week with a different top!

When I returned to sewing 4 1/2 years ago, I was interested in sewing anything but pants, especially jeans…. until recently discovering lightweight stretch denims by the yard.

For years I held on to my jeans from years gone by waiting for the perfect recycling project, my waist to shrink two inches or for sentimental reasons. I kept them under our bed, until I was forced to clean and realized howΒ heavy, bulky, and dated they were. Getting rid of those jeans energized me and at last, I am sewing the new and improved denim.

IMG_0084This is my second pair of Jailie’s Eleonore Jeans (first pair blogged here). I played it safe with my first pair sewn with stretch twill and in a slightly relaxed fit with a boot cut leg, but this time I took advantage of the stretch and sewed a tighter fit.

The beauty of this pattern is the foldover elastic waist making the jeans perfect to wear with tops worn on the outside and bulk free. The pattern also features real back pockets, a mock fly and mock front pockets.

3461_line_drawingApplying Steam-a-Seam down the center of the elastic was a great substitute for pins when sewing the elastic to the waistband.

Above: Elastic stitched to waistband Below: Steam-a-Seam application to elastic before attaching to waistband

Above: Elastic stitched to waistband
Below: Steam-a-Seam application to elastic before attaching to waistband

My hot pink stretch denim from EmmaOneSock is ready to brighten any occasion! It is light enough to wear in hot weather but maintains a durability to withstand the stress from the tight fit. I sewed this pair at a shorter length in order to slide into summer sandals without adjusting a cuff. My top was sewn in 2011 (bloggedΒ hereΒ and here).

IMG_0071 2I guess you could say I liked sewing these jeans so much I didn’t want to stop, so I made another pair.

IMG_0058This pair features a slightly longer leg to wear with wedges, and sewn in Mood Fabrics’ Jay Blue Stretch Blended DenimΒ –Β a lovely fabric in another great Spring color! I’m wearing the jeans with a top I made exactly one year ago (blogged here).

Sewing the jeans back to back was a great lesson in understanding no two denims are alike! Much like knits, I recommend trying on the garment at each critical juncture even if you’ve sewn a perfect fit from the pattern before!

IMG_0074 2

My first pair of Eleonores were plagued with excessive wrinkling behind the knees. To reduce the wrinkles I shortened the length just above the knee by 1 1/2 ” ( don’t forget to add back to the length in needed). Then, thanks to the suggestion of a reader, I made the back leg 1/2″ shorter than the front on the inseam between the knee and crotch, and gently stretched the slight difference into place. It worked (!), and pairs 2 and 3 have only the natural wrinkling that occurs with leg movement.


So garments 10 and 11 are complete and nicely mix into my wardrobe of separates. I’m eager to sew another pair of jeans over the summer, perhaps the real thing with all of the bells and whistles. If you sew jeans, I hope you’ll share your favorite patterns with me!


Until soon πŸ™‚



  • Deborah Penner
    Posted at 18:27h, 20 April Reply

    Wow, these look wonderful. Thanks for the tip on shortening the back a bit. Just one more reason to make your own stretch jeans. You are such an inspiration!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 07:15h, 21 April Reply

      Thank you, Deborah! I highly recommend the pattern now that I’ve worked through this little kink πŸ™‚

  • Melissa Schulze
    Posted at 18:30h, 20 April Reply

    What an amazing pattern!!! Love the new jeans AND that gorgeous necklace.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 07:16h, 21 April Reply

      Thank you, Melissa πŸ™‚ I bought the necklace at a Lilly Pulitzer store this spring, so it shouldn’t be too hard to find.

  • Catherine
    Posted at 18:30h, 20 April Reply

    Cute, cute…do you mind if I ask what the center front “rise ” measurement is on your pants? To top of band?
    Thanks…. Getting ready to alter a pattern for long waist.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 07:19h, 21 April Reply

      Thank you, Catherine! The front rise is 9″

  • CarolinasCallin
    Posted at 18:34h, 20 April Reply

    Love those, Sarah! And the colors are terrific! I remember both of your tops, too πŸ™‚ Still waiting for you to release that amazing tunic pattern you’ve perfected! Sign me up as your first customer πŸ˜‰

    One of my very favorite pair of jeans (in fact, the only jeans I wear!) are from French Dressing Jeans and are the stretch denim pull-ons. So incredibly comfortable and easy to wear – and no bulk from front pockets or fly fronts! I’ve been looking for a pattern that would mimic those…so your post comes at the perfect time. I’ll have to take a look at the patterns – I’ve never used Jalie. Do you find the fit pretty ‘true to size’?

    Thanks again for more inspiration! My sewing machine has been very neglected in favor of everything wedding…so I’m looking forward to getting back in the saddle! If your jeans will pass the ‘comfort’ test in our hot Southern summers…then I’m on board πŸ™‚

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 07:22h, 21 April Reply

      Thanks for your comment, Cheryl! I’m amazed that you have time to read a blog, much less comment with a wedding around the corner. You must be super organized! The Jalie pattern comes in 27 sizes which are designated by letters, but once I found my letter size (R or S) the fit was great πŸ™‚
      Good luck with everything!!

  • Marla Cooprider
    Posted at 18:59h, 20 April Reply

    Oh I love those. I made a couple pair of jeans in the past couple years but this looks like a nice pattern. I might have to get it. If only I had more time to sew! Life is getting in the way right now. But drooling over your blogs and other sewing related posts! πŸ™‚

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 07:23h, 21 April Reply

      Thank you, Marla! I completely get the ‘life is getting in the way’ comment. Hang in there πŸ™‚

  • Julie Starr
    Posted at 19:16h, 20 April Reply

    These colors are so pretty for summer! Thanks for working out the kinks on that wrinkles behind the knees issue – it was the one thing I struggled with on this pattern. Otherwise, I could live in these jeans (and with 4 pairs sewn, I kind of do!) The only “real” jeans I’ve sewn are also Jalie; their popular stretch jeans pattern. I was thinking of adding the flare leg from that pattern on to the Eleonores to see how that works out. Great post, Sarah!

    • Julie Starr
      Posted at 19:26h, 20 April Reply

      I might add that the instructions for the Jalie “real” jeans are very well written, especially the zipper fly front. They also include two different rise options.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 07:24h, 21 April Reply

      Thank you, Julie! Ill take a look at Jalie’s real jeans!

  • Art Attack
    Posted at 19:32h, 20 April Reply

    Aren’t E’s great? Yours both look fab on you. I’ve made probably 6 pairs and every one of them fits a little differently. So much is dependent on the stretch, or lack thereof, your denim. Super cute on you!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 07:25h, 21 April Reply

      Thank you, Dorcas! Yes, “E’s” are great. Have you sewn the pattern in anything other than denim?

  • Cissie Wellons
    Posted at 20:07h, 20 April Reply

    These both look amazing on you, Sarah. I’ve made so many pairs of these Jalie jeans that they require a separate drawer in my dressing room.. But I still enjoy the satisfaction of making “real” jeans. For these, I like StyleArc’s Sandra jeans.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 07:27h, 21 April Reply

      Thank you, Cissie! I’ve admired your Eleonores on PR for a while. I’ll take a look at the Style Arc jeans and your reviews on them πŸ™‚

  • Gerhild
    Posted at 20:27h, 20 April Reply

    I love the fit of the new jeans. You look great in them.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 07:27h, 21 April Reply

      Many thanks, Gerhild πŸ™‚

  • Irene
    Posted at 20:42h, 20 April Reply

    Your jeans are fabulous! I find them rather addictive to sew. Can’t make just one pair – always have the next ones in mind. I sew from a self-drafted pattern, but I’m constantly tweaking. You’re so right – you really must try on as you sew. (That’s the part that I hate about sewing!) I’m seeing quite a few “pull-on” jeans in the blogs – may-be something I should try out – it certainly would eliminate all the steps of putting in the zipper!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 07:29h, 21 April Reply

      Thank you so much, Irene! You can make these in no time πŸ˜‰

  • Tomasa
    Posted at 20:46h, 20 April Reply

    These jeans look great on you and I love the vibrant colors. Beautiful fit too!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 07:33h, 21 April Reply

      Many thanks, Tomasa! I really like the fit now too πŸ™‚

  • Sarah Jo
    Posted at 21:40h, 20 April Reply

    Well done! What a fun series of blog posts. Look forward to reading about your next project.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 07:34h, 21 April Reply

      Thank you so much, Sarah Jo!

  • Becky Welch
    Posted at 22:21h, 20 April Reply

    Your jeans are very cute. Love the hot pink color. I am fascinated with the Steam-a-Seam application to elastic before attaching to waistband. Is there just elastic in the back of these? The elastic looks to be the same length as the waistband itself. I’m not sure that I understand.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 07:38h, 21 April Reply

      Many thanks, Becky!
      I’ve never liked holding elastic with pins because my pins usually end up bent. Placing steam a seam along the middle of the elastic holds the elastic in place while sewing. The is elastic in both the front and back bands, and it is cut the same length as the waistband. Can’t say I understand everything either so I just follow directions πŸ˜‰

  • Jill
    Posted at 22:49h, 20 April Reply

    Very cute

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 07:38h, 21 April Reply

      Thank you, Jill!

  • Claire
    Posted at 23:03h, 20 April Reply

    That Liberty top is one of my favorites of all your me-mades! Your new Eleanores look great and that EOS fabric looks like it has perfect recovery. I think you are right that the E’s are the perfect entree into jeans making. Thanks to your inspiration (and Cissie /Julie), I’m hoping to try the E’s first before tackling the ginger jeans by Closet Case Files. Doesn’t matter the brand, RTW jeans just never fit me quite right!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 07:40h, 21 April Reply

      Many thanks for your comment, Claire! I agree, these jeans are the perfect entree into making jeans. You’re introduced to working with denim and topstitching before dealing with the other biggies like the fly etc….

  • Paula LH
    Posted at 01:12h, 21 April Reply

    Love your blog! I subscribed hoping that it would inspire me to work on my own sewing. Alas, despite being regularly inspired, I keep working on my garden instead. I think I need staff so that I have time to sew. It is true that I have time, but I keep doing this other thing instead..

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 07:41h, 21 April Reply

      LOL! I need a full time gardener and a full time chef πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ Many thanks for the comment, Paula!

  • Roberta Fahrni
    Posted at 03:40h, 21 April Reply

    LOVE your pull-on jeans! You have inspired me to try. Thank you! I also love the way you style them with your tops. Great outfits!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 07:41h, 21 April Reply

      Thank you so much, Roberta! Good luck with the pattern πŸ™‚

  • eimear
    Posted at 06:02h, 21 April Reply

    gorgeous jeans, and really love the comment of waiting for waist to shrink by 2 inches for sentimental reasons…. sure know that moment!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 07:42h, 21 April Reply

      LOL – I keep thinking life would be perfect if my waistline was smaller πŸ˜‰
      Many thanks for the comment!

  • Mary Funt
    Posted at 06:03h, 21 April Reply

    Your new jeans look fabulous and have a very flattering fit. I will have to try this pattern.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 07:43h, 21 April Reply

      Thank you, Mary! You could knock these out in a jiffy πŸ™‚

  • Sharon Killian
    Posted at 07:35h, 21 April Reply

    Beautiful work,Saarah! And thanks for sharing the knee alteration – these are next up in my sewing queue. Would you mind sharing what kind of elastic you used? Thanks!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 07:45h, 21 April Reply

      Thank you, Sharon! I bought the elastic in bulk so I’m not sure other than it’s 1 1/2″ wide and not lingerie elastic. Hope that helps πŸ˜‰

  • Carolyn
    Posted at 08:42h, 21 April Reply

    I love how you’re merging new items with previously made items! Both pairs of jeans are fantastic!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 11:37h, 21 April Reply

      Thank you, Carolyn! I think if we sew what we love we’ll wear it forever πŸ˜‰

  • Beth (SunnyGal Studio)
    Posted at 11:01h, 21 April Reply

    super cute pants.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 11:38h, 21 April Reply

      Thank you so much, Beth!

  • Gayle
    Posted at 11:18h, 21 April Reply

    Love all your garments; you are a master of fit!

  • goodbyevalentino
    Posted at 11:39h, 21 April Reply

    Many thanks, Gayle. That’s what keeps me sewing πŸ˜‰

  • Marina Villalobos
    Posted at 13:22h, 21 April Reply

    You inspire me. I just ordered white, hot pink and turquoise stretch denim from Mood Fabrics. I also ordered the same pattern. Here’s hoping I get similar results!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:10h, 22 April Reply

      Thank you, Marina for the nice comment, and I wish you great success with your jeans! I did not mention that the pattern requires a denim with 20% stretch so please check your denim to see if it meets the stretch requirement on the pattern πŸ™‚ I ordered black denim “with stretch” from Mood that did not. I suppose denim with stretch’ and ‘stretch denim’ are two diffierent things πŸ˜‰

  • Sharon
    Posted at 16:43h, 21 April Reply

    I thought your first pair of jeans looked great, the wrinkly knees not a big deal. However, your refinements hit the jeans out of the park! I always liked the ruffle top and it still looks so fresh with the jeans.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:16h, 22 April Reply

      Hi Sharon! Many thanks for your comment πŸ™‚ The baggy knees had to go! As for the ruffle top – it will always remain a favorite garment of mine as it was one of the first gamrnets I made that passed as RTW .

  • Jerris Lane
    Posted at 17:12h, 21 April Reply

    I have made 2 pair and have 2 more cut out and waiting to be sewn. Great pattern especially for the more mature figure that does not need the additional bulk at waist of zipper etc. I do not tuck my tops so love the lack of bulk at waist. Yours look great. I ordered pattern based on your review of the first pair you made. Thanks!!!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:17h, 22 April Reply

      Many thanks, Jerris for your comment! I’m sure I’ll be making another pair at some point too πŸ™‚

  • Kathleen
    Posted at 17:33h, 21 April Reply

    I haven’t ventured into jeans yet! I too have returned to sewing (only a little over a year after a 40 yr hiatus!) and I have a jeans pattern but I like this one you’ve done better. I love the colours and the fit is amazing. Thank you for posting that idea about making the back inseam slightly shorter. I’ve bookmarked this page for future reference! πŸ™‚

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:20h, 22 April Reply

      Thank you, Kathleen! I’m so very appreciative of readers sharing their tips with me and the inseam tip was incredibly helpful. Good luck with yours πŸ˜‰

  • Myra
    Posted at 05:43h, 22 April Reply

    These jeans look absolutely adorable on you and I love your color selections! I have this pattern on my list to sew… Have not done so yet, but really excited now! Great review!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:20h, 22 April Reply

      Thank you, Myra! You’ll love it πŸ™‚

  • Sew Jean Margaret
    Posted at 06:27h, 22 April Reply

    These jeans look fantastic. You have really nailed the fit and they are so flattering on you. Love the colours too.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:25h, 24 April Reply

      Thank you so much, Jean! I couldn’t resist these colors πŸ™‚

  • Fran Giacobbe
    Posted at 07:57h, 22 April Reply

    Another inspiring garment! Living in FL, I am happy to read there is a denim that will be comfy to wear in warmer weather….there are times I like my legs covered. Using the correct fabric does make such a difference. Helpful tip about using steam-a-seam to hold elastic in place before sewing. Aren’t you in the process of writing a book ?

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:28h, 24 April Reply

      Many thanks for your comment, Fran! The pink denim is very light weight and the blue is heavier. You may want to order fabric samples if you must have a very lightweight fabric.
      Yes, the book is written and in the hands of publishers! Julie and I hope to make an announcement soon πŸ™‚

  • Becky Riddle
    Posted at 09:10h, 22 April Reply

    Both of these are fabulous, in color and fit. You still look fabulous in ruffles!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:29h, 24 April Reply

      Thank you, Becky – LOL! I’ll always love ruffles πŸ™‚

  • Amanda S.
    Posted at 09:27h, 22 April Reply

    I love both pairs of your colored jeans! The fit is spot on.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:29h, 24 April Reply

      Thank you so much, Amanda πŸ™‚

  • Joen
    Posted at 16:15h, 22 April Reply

    Thank you for the sewing tips – I just ordered this pattern and hope to get a nice fitting pair of summer pants!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:30h, 24 April Reply

      Hi Joen! So nice to hear from you and good luck with the pants πŸ™‚

  • Jerris Lane
    Posted at 18:01h, 22 April Reply

    When do you try on your “Es”? Due to top stitching and order of construction it is difficult to get good preview. Suggestions are welcome.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:37h, 24 April Reply

      Ah……. I was waiting for someone to ask πŸ˜‰ I sew the inseam and before attaching the waistband I staystitch the upper edge of the jeans and pin the pant. Next I either pin the outside leg seams wrong sides together OR machine baste right sides together. This allows me to loosely check the overall fit. If I need to make adjustments especially with the leg width, I mark with a Frixon pen.
      I always baste the waistband in place before stitching as well. Hope this helps πŸ™‚

  • Catherine Fowler
    Posted at 19:43h, 22 April Reply

    I highly recommend Ginger Jeans from Closet Case files (and Cone denim). Fit is superb and instructions are great. For my next pair, I’m going to try the Birkin Jeans from Baste and Gather.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:38h, 24 April Reply

      Thanks so much, Catherine. You are not the first person to recommend the Ginger Jeans and I will definitely check out the pattern πŸ™‚ Many thanks! Have you seen Oonaballoonas Birkin Jeans?

  • Patricia Pfeiffer
    Posted at 09:16h, 23 April Reply

    I’m glad you tried my suggestion of shortening the back leg, and that it worked so well for you. The colored jeans look just gorgeous on you!
    When I first started sewing pants back in the “olden days” that was in the patterns I used and it drove me crazy that the seams didn’t match up, until I learned why they were different. Today’s patterns don’t seem to have that built-in fitting feature..
    I don’t have that Jalie pattern, yet, but I think I need to get it!


  • Creative Hormone Rush
    Posted at 00:07h, 24 April Reply

    iI always break into a huge smile when I see your new creations. Not only do you choose patterns with interesting lines and then successfully fit them beautifully to your body, but you make them up in happy, happy colors. Everything you create is droolworthy. And these pink jeans are fabulous. Just fabulous.

  • Sue Scott
    Posted at 15:42h, 27 April Reply

    I’m another that’s bought the pattern having seen how successful you have been! It will have to wait until I’ve nailed a shirt pattern ‘m working on though. Then it’s fabric shopping as there’s nothing suitable in the stash.

  • Georgia
    Posted at 10:52h, 28 April Reply

    I love your jeans! I bought the pattern because of your success and your hints for getting the bagginess out of the legs. I have a shape very similar to yours and before I even do the test pair I was wondering if you cut them according to your hip measurement or did you end up going down smaller in the end.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 21:10h, 28 April Reply

      Thank you, Georgia! Yes, I cut the jeans according to my hip measurement. Good luck πŸ™‚

  • Julie Heimburger
    Posted at 13:54h, 29 April Reply

    I’m still a little new to sewing, again. What kind of needle did you use? A stretch or denim? Did you just use a regular straight stitch? Wasn’t sure since it’s a stretch fabric. Can’t wait to try them!

  • Amy Jamieson
    Posted at 12:29h, 15 July Reply

    Hi Sara, I love Eleonore jeans and can’t get enough of a flat front pull on pant in general. When you removed the 1/2″ from the back leg, did you just pinch it out on the pattern tapering to zero at the middle of the pattern? Thanks! Looking forward to The Tunic Bible release!

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