Saturday, April 20, 2013

Frankenstein Mending

Do you mend garments? I grew up wearing hand-me-downs from my older sister and cousin, so mending and altering was just part of my life. It never really bothered me because I had unique clothes. I loved unique. Nobody was a stickler for strict styles, so I wasn't out of place. Living on a farm tears up clothes, plus we do a lot of shopping at thrift stores, so my daughters have embraced uniqueness too. The boys just suffer through my mending, LOL. 

My youngest daughter has a favorite pair of jeans. They are faded and fit her perfectly. And they had a crisis with the barb wire fence. She kept wearing them and washing them which really frayed the edges. Finally she agreed to let me mend them as it was getting too breezy on her right leg. The kid is slender and chills easy ;) 

I use scrap fabric when mending for the girls, since they don't care if it matches perfectly. It's difficult to pin the fabric to the jean leg, so I slide my 6x24 ruler down the leg. It gives me a hard surface underneath. For this project, I used some flowered flannel left over from my Christmas rice bag presents. It's pretty, feminine and super soft. 

Choosing a thread is usually fun. Match the jeans or the mending fabric? Or something in between? I chose the small spool of blue. It was the happy medium. You can also see my manic pinning, LOL.    

This little slit was on the right side of her knee where the leg was too narrow to rotate on my machine. I pinned the flannel, then stitch forward and back at a slight angle which left a wide zig zag appearance to the mend. It wasn't my first choice of how to mend but it worked.

For the big hole on the thigh, I stitched around the hole twice. Once to attach the flannel to the jeans, then again to secure it all together. I try to leave the frayed edges fluffy as it adds to the country girl appearance. I will trim it shorter if necessary but we really think it looks cutest frayed and with the flowers peeking out. You can use clear tape to make it lay flat out of the way if it bothers you while sewing.

The big T shaped hole I mended in stages. It started on the thigh and ripped down to the narrow knee. The kid has a gift for destruction.

I call this mending 'Frankensteining' because it tends to look ugly and patched together any old way. I take bits and pieces, remix them to make something better. Regardless of appearance, it works. It's imperfect but sturdy. These jeans have already been worn, washed and worn again. My daughter loves her mended jeans because it flaunts her girly side to have flowers peeping out. No matter how much mud and muck covers the rest of her :)

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