Pants, Tutorial

Jenny Shortalls

Closet Core Jenny Overalls telio floral denim

First of all, I absolutely love how practical and yet whimsical these turned out. I used the Jenny overalls pattern from Closet Core Patterns. The pattern includes overalls, shortalls, and trousers. I like that the shorts have a 4” inseam as it is my preferred length for shorts. And as always, Closet Core impresses me every time with their instructions. They really go above and beyond to describe all the steps clearly.

I purchased Telio Denim Flower Print fabric in Light blue form several years ago for this pattern when it first came out. The denim is really stretchy. So stretchy, it could almost be suitable for jeggings. So, I decided to size down to a size 4. After all my pieces were cut out I decided to add pocket stays because I had heard that they help make a flatter tummy and who doesn’t want that? One thing I failed to think about was that the pocket lining DOES NOT stretch like my fabric so I should have cut out a size 6! Closet Core must have had sewists like me in mind because the seam allowance at the sides is an entire inch! It was easy to make up for my mistake.

A Jenny buttons kit was purchased from Closet Core’s website when the pattern was released. I used heavy duty thread in a medium gray color for topstitching.

I did make three modifications to the pattern. First, I drafted a back piece. The Jenny pattern has the shoulder straps coming out of the back waistband. I wanted more of a traditional overalls look since I chose a fabric that was a little untraditional. Here is a picture of the back pattern piece after I drafted it. It is pictured against my cutting mat with 1″ squares. It is a pretty easy piece to make yourself and I just eye-balled the proportions after looking at overalls on Pinterest.

Drafted back pattern piece for overalls without a seam allowance

I cut two of my back pieces out, sewed them together lengthwise, topstitched the center seam, and then made a narrow hem (1/4″) on the top and sides. The bottom of the back piece gets sandwiched in between the front and back pieces of the waistband for a clean look. Personally, I liked to look of a center seam on the back so I could match the topstitching to match the front bib and pocket, but it could be easily eliminated by cutting on the fold.

Overalls back after topstitching the center seam
Closet Core Jenny Ovealls pattern hack

As I mentioned earlier, I used pocket stays to create a little more support around the tummy area. I thought it was a good move since this floral denim is so stretchy and one of the reasons I liked the Jenny pattern was the tailored silhouette and simple, flat front on the pants. If you have ever made high-waisted trousers with a stretch woven, a pocket stay would be a great addition as the transition from a rigid, interfaced waistband to a stretchy, forgiving fabric around the tummy area can be not the most flattering (or comfortable) combination. The pocket stay also gives the front of the pants more support so the waistband is less likely to dig in at the waist while in a seated position. You can use scraps of quilting cotton or cotton shirting for the pocket stays. The pattern will not be visible after construction.

Shorts pants with pocket stay
Shortalls shown inside out with red gingham pocket stays.

The last modification, I followed this tutorial on CCP’s website to add the hip buttons along the sides. I used my new sewing machine, a Bernina 570, to add keyhole-shaped buttonholes. The shank of the buttons fit perfectly in these buttonholes, so they will also wear better.

Closet core Jenny overalls side buttons

If I choose to make these again, which I likely will, I would like to size up one size, increase and lower the back crotch curve just a little and maybe lower the back pockets 3/4 inch. Overall, I think these fit great especially since I didn’t make a muslin first!

Closet core Jenny
Closet core Jenny
Closet core jenny

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