Instead of buying brand-new jeggings, tempt your tween to turn last year's denim into this year's hottest trend: fit-like-a-glove jeggings. Chances are, your eco-conscious youngster may already know that 25% of U.S. pesticides are used on cotton. With this technique and a few sewing supplies, you can help her skinny up her environmental footprint -- and her jeans -- in an afternoon.
What You Do:
1. Prepare jeans. Have your child turn jeans inside out, then iron the legs using the iron's hottest setting. She should pay extra attention to flattening the inside leg seams.
2. Have your child put jeans on inside-out.
3. Thread a needle with quilting thread yourself, double it and leave thread loose (no knot). Starting where the pant leg gets loose (probably knee or mid-thigh), tug jeans away from her leg along the inside seam.
4. Pinch the seam and smooth the fabric from seam toward the leg until it is snug.
5. Hold the pinched fabric and make one stitch (about 1/2" long), double-knot and snip threads. Pull, pinch, smooth, then stitch about every inch working down to the cuff. If fabric bunches or gathers, take out the stitch, smooth, and stitch again.
6. Once stitches are in, help your child gently pull off jeans.
7. Have her smooth the jeans out flat and mark a chalk seam line from stitch to stitch. Generally, the seam should curve; it can wander a little from the stitches for a smoother curve.
8. Back-stitch along the chalk line, starting at the top and working down.
9. Try them inside-out. Jeggings worn inside-out should feel a little looser than desired. If quite loose, your child can stitch a new seam closer to leg. (No need to remove the earlier stitches.) If too tight, she can stitch a new seam 1/8" further from leg, then remove the first seam.
10. With fit approved, you might offer to cut off the triangle of extra fabric to avoid a an eleventh-hour disaster. Trim fabric no closer than 1/4" from the final seam, working from cuff up.
11. About 1/4" before stitching ends, snip outward, across the original inside seam to free the extra piece.
12. Turn jeggings right side out and rock!