Double Denim

At the end of last year, Emma from Emma’s Atelier organised a sewing challenge for the Wellington Sewing Bloggers. We were going to finally stop procrastinating and sew jeans! Now, I got my jeans finished by the end-of-challenge date in March, but the date was pushed back a few times to accommodate others who were still sewing. Eventually the 6th of May was decided on, so I decided to sew up something else for the challenge as I had already blogged my jeans


I was going to have a crack at some Ginger Jeans, but I didn’t get organised in time. Instead I decided to use the rest of the stretch denim I had left over from my Safran Jeans to make another version of the skirt from v1247. I really liked my first version of this skirt, but it is pretty short, and the fit is all a bit squiffy because I was more worried about pattern matching than the trifling matter of accurate seam allowances…


This version does fit much better, I don’t have the odd bubbling above the pockets like I did with my first version. Guess those seam allowances do matter huh? I added 3” to the hem of this one, and I prefer the longer length. I also added an exposed zipper up the back (I thought sewing denim and using a metal zip made this skirt enough like jeans to qualify for the challenge!). I used Megan Nielsen’s tutorialย for the zip, and it worked fairly smoothly. It isn’t as neat inside as I would like, due to the way the seam allowance gets clipped, but I can live with it! I bound all of the internal seams with Hug Snug, to keep the bulk down (and because I couldn’t be bothered making bias tape). It looks a bit dodgy up close, but if you aren’t looking too closely it looks pretty good!


I’ve been wearing this skirt heaps since I finished it, I didn’t realise I needed a denim skirt but it has obviously filled a gap in my autumn wardrobe!


I’ve also made a long sleeved version of the Deer & Doe Melilot Shirt, in a Robert Kaufman chambray from (I think it’s this one, but I’m not 100% sure). I love my short sleeved one, so I thought a long sleeved version would go well in my wardrobe, and I was right! I really love this shirt. I’ve seen some mixed reviews of the Kaufman chambray around, but it’s really hard to find lightweight chambray in store in Wellington, so I thought I’d give it a go. It’s really nice and soft, and it pressed and sewed up nicely. Hopefully it’ll wash well, because I’d like this shirt to last.


This is the first time I’ve sewn tower plackets, and I’m pretty pleased with how they turned out. There was a little bit of head scratching as I tried to get everything to fold correctly, but it all suddenly fell into place and looked like what I was expecting! I put a bar tack right across the top of the split to reinforce it, as I’ll be wearing these sleeves rolled up most of the time, but next time I think I’ll use a shorter vertical bar tack to strengthen that area. The long bar tack is just a bit clumsy looking! I am happy with the way the cuffs turned out, the curves on the cuffs, collar and pockets look really nice together.


I hemmed this one with some grey bias tape, as I’ve never been happy with the turn and stitch hem treatment on my first shirt. Bias tape just sits so much flatter around those sharp curves at the side seams. The buttons are my favourite mother of pearl shirt buttons from Made Marion Crafts in Wellington.


I’m not entirely sure what the deal is with those big wrinkles above the pockets on this shirt, I wonder if that just happens with dropped shoulder seams? Any suggestions? I have so many versions of this planned now, I’ve got some rayon for another long sleeved version, and some more cotton for a long sleeved dress hack, and some linen for another short sleeved summer version… I need a job with a smart/casual dress code so I can wear them all!


In the end, only Emma and I had finished items for the challenge reveal, so here we are in matching denim (she used the same stuff for her Safran Jeans), and with our matching Ida Clutches, before we had delicious chips and soda at Six Barrel Soda Co!

Finally, does chambray count as denim? Is this outfit double denim? I really like both pieces,ย so I’ve decided not to be to bothered about wearing them together. Double denim is in now anyway, right? I’ve seen the hipsters wearing it for years! Either way, down withย fashion rules…


23 thoughts on “Double Denim

  1. Is there a rule against double denim? I had no clue. To be honest I don’t care either. I’ll happily wear both jeans and denim shirts at the same time. And who cares, really? Because this looks absolutely spiffing! It’s a great combo, why shouldn’t you wear it?
    Fabric-wise, I would definitely say chambray is not at all denim. So very different weaves, but can come in same colours. Maybe the colouring is why some call chambray a light weight denim? I don’t know, never bothered to ask. ๐Ÿ˜ƒ

    1. There’s definitely a bit of ‘redneck chic’ about double denim, in NZ at least! I know that chambray and denim both have the white warp thread and coloured weft thread (or the other way around, I can never remember), but I guess that’s the only similarity really! Thanks, I’m definitely going to keep wearing them together ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. Love the skirt and the top! In terms of “rules” against double denim, I wouldn’t say it was so much a rule as you would just open yourself up to “Canadian Tuxedo” jokes ๐Ÿ˜‰ But I also wouldn’t qualify Chambray as a true denim ๐Ÿ˜€

  3. I love your outfit – Double denim rules! v1247 – I love every incarnation of this pattern that I see, but, boo hoo, the pattern is out of print. Such a shame I never bought it.

    1. It’s such a great pattern, I would fully recommend buying it if you see it online or second hand somewhere! I cut into my pattern tissue when I first made it, and now I’m kicking myself for not tracing it. I was much more casual with my patterns a year ago ๐Ÿ˜ฌ

  4. This outfit is so ‘you’, double-denim be damned! I love the pockets on that skirt.

    Re the excess fabric at shoulder – I wonder if an FBA would help get rid of that? The back of the shirt looks quite generous on you (though might be because it’s tucked in), but the bust looks fairly fitted, so I wondered if sizing down for the upper back then doing an FBA would balance things out a bit more? I remember the waist/hips looked like they fit fine when you wear the shirt untucked. Deer & Doe have an interesting mode of doing an FBA on their blog that I’ve bookmarked to try myself because it seems to just add width at the bust and not below the waist:

    1. Oh that’s a good point! I’ll look up the FBA, I’ve got some fabric that I won’t mind if I destroy for a practice run ๐Ÿ™‚ I think the back is blousing a lot more because it’s being pushed up by the skirt, but there probably is some room up there that I could lose.

  5. I agree with Lauren. The shoulders look like they fit perfectly, what I can see is the chesticles pushing forward tightening the shoulder vertical which in turn seems to make the armscye poof out a bit. Its absolutely fine as is, but we are after all sewists! We can fix this! An FBA might do the trick, but just a leeeetle one cos the fit is pretty awesome! Love your double denim. I read somewhere yesterday that Levis on hearing a rock star was refused entry to a club/restaurant because he was wearing a denim jacket, made hime a denim tuxedo jacket – hence the term canadian tuxedo for double denim! BTW there is a tower placket tutorial on my site, info reproduced with permission of the texan shirt maker extraordinaire – Mike Maldonado.

    1. Haha, I love that story! Do you think I should go down a size and do the FBA up to my chest size (which would be about 1.5″ either side), or leave it as is and just do a mini 1/2″ or so FBA? I could try both I guess!

  6. How very productive of you! ๐Ÿ˜‰ I really like that skirt and it fits you really good.
    And althought it’s not the main content of this post I’d like to say that I love that clutch! ๐Ÿ˜€ I saw it on IG and it’s really great. Did you interface the leather or does it fold easily on its own? Guess I’ll have to try if my machine can handle leather… ๐Ÿ˜‰

    1. Thanks Friederike! I didn’t interface it, it’s a pretty heavy but soft leather so it folds nicely on its own. I’ve got some much thinner garment weight leather to make another one, and I’ll interface that! Definitely use a leather needle, and you
      might need to hand wind the needle over the thick parts where the darts are, but I’m sure your machine would manage!

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