Pattern Review

My new favorite jeans — the Birkin Flares

I made these jeans back in December as part of the Six Degrees blog tour, and I’m just now getting around to giving them their well-deserved own post!

Creative Counselor: BIrkin Flares

If you hadn’t already guessed, these jeans are the Birkin Flares by Baste + Gather.  It’s late as I’m writing this and I need to sleep more, so I won’t beat around the bush.  I love these jeans.  They are so beautiful and professional looking and I feel like a million bucks when I’m wearing them.

Creative Counselor: BIrkin Flares

The details that went into this pattern are really impressive.  Lauren studied designer jeans and jeans making as she was developing this pattern, and the attention to detail really shows.  She overlooked nothing and the result is beautiful.

This pattern also contained new-to-me methods of inserting the zip fly and the waistband.  When I first read through the instructions, I was skeptical and thought about just doing them my usual way.  But I decided to trust the pattern and boy am I glad I did!  The zip fly went in beautifully, and the waistband is undoubtedly the nicest waistband I’ve ever installed.

Creative Counselor: BIrkin Flares

My fabric is a high quality American-milled stretch denim from a mill called Pacific Blue.  I was looking for Cone Mills at Fancy Tiger Crafts, and they were out, so I got this instead.  It’s really very nice.  Sturdy but with nice stretch and it’s holding up well to wear.  It has enough stretch for the 3″ of negative ease at the hip in this pattern (yes, you read that right — 3 inches), and also enough recover that they’re not stretching out, even with the near-constant wear that they’re getting.Creative Counselor: BIrkin Flares

One of my favorite things about this pattern is the very nice things it does for the butt view.  I’m not being vain here, by any means, but that’s a big part of why these jeans feel so great to wear.

Creative Counselor: BIrkin Flares

The pattern is drafted with a 34″ inseams — described as sufficient length for a 5’7″ woman wearing very high heels.  With that in mind, I originally shortened the inseam on this pattern by 4″ to 30″.  Turns out that was a bad idea!  They were so short that I could only wear them with the flattest of flats.  So to fix that, I drafted and cut a 2.5″ cuff and sewed it onto the bottom of each pants leg.  It’s not particularly noticeable, and most people would probably just think I did a wide hem.

Creative Counselor: BIrkin Flares

I am publicly on record as a huge fan of the Closet Case Ginger Jeans. So how do they compare????  Never fear, you will find out soon enough…next week 🙂

Creative Counselor: BIrkin Flares

Pattern: Birkin Flares by Baste + Gather

Cost: $12.00

Size: 28.

Fabric:  For these jeans I used Pacific Blue Mills indigo stretch denim from Fancy Tiger Crafts.  It’s 11.5oz stretch denim with 2% spandex.

Difficulty:  Intermediate.  Jeans really aren’t complicated to make, they just take a lot of time and precise topstitching.  For that reason, they’re not a beginner project, but if you have a decent amount of apparel sewing under youR belt, do not fear the jeans!

Techniques Required:  Topstitching, inserting a zip fly, pants alterations (if needed), working with denim, finishing a waistband.

Similar Patterns: Closet Case Files Ginger Jeans with the flare add-on, Itch to Stitch Liana Jeans

Modifiations:  None.

Fit:  Amazing.  I love these jeans.  I didn’t even have to make a swayback adjustment and the fit was spot-on straight out of the envelope.

Pattern Format: PDF.  Not gonna lie here, jeans patterns are some of the most cumbersome PDF files I’ve ever worked with.  That being said, this file is surprisingly small for a PDF jeans file.  Overall, it wasn’t too bad to work with.

Pros:

  • Beautiful, designer finishes.
  • New-to-me method of installing the zip fly gave a really, really nice finish.
  • New-to-me method of installing the waistband resulted in the best-looking waistband I’ve ever made.
  • The 3″ of negative ease at the hip is really slimming and makes for a great behind view.
  • Detailed instructions that walk through every step of jeans making.

Cons:

  • I seriously don’t have one.  Lauren did a lot of work on this pattern and it shows.  The finished product is really top-notch.

Overall Grade:  A.  I would put these right up towards the top of my all-time favorite makes.

0 thoughts on “My new favorite jeans — the Birkin Flares

  1. You look like a million bucks! They look so professional and amazing! Beautiful work! I can imagine you are very proud to be wearing them as you should be! I like the Birkin Flares… just have not embarked on jeans making yet… maybe this year.

    1. Thank you! Last year was the year I decided to bite the bullet and make a pair of jeans. And then I made 5! They’re a time investment, but it’s kind of addictive 🙂

  2. These look great! I’m seriously tempted to try this pattern. Wow, 3″ of negative ease sounds a bit scary, but I guess it works. Oh, and I love your back pocket top stitching. Nicely done!

    1. Thank you! I was a little intimidated by the 3″ of negative ease too, but now that I’ve made them, I’m convinced that negative ease is the reason this pattern works so well. These are the only jeans I have EVER owned that I can wear a belt with. Usually I find belts incredibly annoying and I’m fiddling with them all day, but with these jeans I don’t even notice that I have it on. I think that’s largely because they’re a nice, snug fit through the hip so the belt is not actually holding them up — it’s just a nice accent.

  3. These look so great!! I love them! I like your pocket topstitching, I’ve been thinking I should come up with a signature pocket design that I use in some variation on all of my jeans, like I have my own “brand”, ha. Nice work!

  4. I wonder about the high waist being appropriate for my older belly. It’s usually uncomfortable and unflattering. I’m talkin’ about the muffin top! (Usually a wider lower raise is more appropriate.) What do you think? (You may have replies from older women?)

    1. I can’t speak specifically to older women but my stomach is far from flat. I have 3 little ones and I’m one of those unfortunate women who has tons of stretch marks and flabby stretched out skin all over the tummy. And I still find these jeans comfortable and flattering, if that helps 😊

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