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Megan Nielsen’s Dawn Jeans

I made jeans! I still can’t believe it. These are definitely one of my proudest makes and I am so excited to share them with you. I used Megan Nielsen’s Dawn Jeans Pattern which is a high waisted, vintage inspired jean. The Dawn Jeans pattern is for non stretch denim so it was a perfect match for this Robert Kaufman Selvedge Denim. There are four different views- a tapered leg, straight leg, wide leg and shorts. I made View B which is the straight leg. The pattern includes a button fly but there is a tutorial on Megan Nielsen's blog for an exposed button fly or a zipper fly- I chose the latter! 

This Robert Kaufman denim is heavy weight and a dark wash with red and yellow selvedge edges. There’s a slight design on the reverse side which is pretty neat! This denim is only 31 inches wide so I had to take that into consideration when figuring out how much I would need. I knew I wanted to leave the selvedge as a design feature so I made sure to place the side seams of the front and back pattern pieces on the selvedge edges. I only lost the selvedge from the waist to the hip. You can see a little bit of the selvedge when I roll up the legs!

There are very few projects where I have taken the time to make a toile before cutting into my fabric and this is one of those times. Since there is no stretch in this denim, I was scared I would cut a size too small. I also knew these would be a lot of work so I didn’t want the fit to be off! I made a very quick mock up out of some scrap fabric I had and was pretty confident with the size I chose so I cut into the denim. I used another fabric for the pocket bags. The pocket bags are a way to add some fun on the inside so I used a vintage floral cotton for them.  

I really didn’t have any issues sewing these jeans once I figured out the best settings on my machine for the topstitching. There is a lot of topstitching involved (one or two rows for nearly every step) so figuring that out is very important. These jeans were time consuming but I also didn’t rush the process. I have sewn a zipper fly before and I have also sewn with denim before but I was still so nervous with this project! I took them one step at a time. Using a denim needle in my machine was absolutely necessary. I was so relieved I didn’t break any! I had a few really thick spots that I was nervous about sewing through. I hand cranked my machine during those sections or it is recommended to take a hammer to them to flatten them out. It worked! 

My husband enjoys leather working so he cut me a piece of leather and put sewing holes in it for the back patch. It looked so plain when I went to sew it on though. I had an idea to try out my wood burner on it and it worked! I free handed this sewing machine design and I am so thrilled with how it turned out. 

I am so happy with these jeans. I think the fit is great and more importantly- I feel great in them! This denim is such amazing quality. I know I will have and wear these for many years to come!

Thanks for reading,

Erin @ Poetic Memory

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