Tag Archives: coat

I’m In This Big Art Coat

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I Look Incredible

What-what?  What?  What?      What-what?  What?  What?

I'm in my big art coat

I Look Incredible

This is freakin' AWESOME

Before you start groaning…

please understand that this blog entry is fashioned after the lyrics and musical refrain in the hit tune, Thrift Shop, by Macklemore

(The “unclean” version is more fun to watch in video, but the lyrics are decidedly unsuited to my refined audience)

bring the music up and enjoy

(my lyrics go with the part that starts around 3:04 minutes and goes to the end)

  Thriftstore

Thread Shop

I’m gonna sew some clothes
Only got forty dollars in my pocket
I-I-I’m huntin’
Lookin’ for some buttons
This is freakin’ awesome

I’ll wear my own made clothes
I look incredible
I’m in this big art coat
From that thread shop down the road
I’ll wear my own made clothes
I look incredible
I’m in this big art coat
From that thread shop down the road

I’m gonna sew some clothes
Only got forty dollars in my pocket
I-I-I’m huntin’
Lookin’ for some buttons
This is freakin’ awesome

By the way, I did make this jacket for just under $40 dollars.  How’s that for poppin’ tags!   Not bad for a freakin’ awesome big art coat.

Coat Making – Pocket Perfection

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Lining Your Pocket And Creating A Flap! 

Patch pockets are quite simple in their basic design and should be constructed in such a way as to provide subtle functionality. A well executed pocket will draw little attention to itself and instead act as a support to overall feeling of a couture quality garment.    I will be sharing a few simple construction tips that commercial patterns guides don’t generally explain that will hopefully help you achieve pocket perfect.

making patch pockets
                               Trim away a scant 5/8″ from the interfacing to eliminate additional bulk in the seam line and apply to face fabric.  

making patch pockets

Trim away a scant portion from all edges of the lining.  This is cause the lining to roll under the face fabric reducing visibility on surface
  
making patch pockets
Stitch face fabric and lining together.  Lining, being slightly smaller than the face fabric will pull slightly.  Leave an opening on the side large enough to turn fabric right side out.
making patch pockets
Trim away excess seam allowance.  When grading the seam allowance, be sure that the face fabric is graded slightly wider than the lining.  This will create a smoother surface on the turned surface. Clip edges and  remover corners by cutting straight across above the point to reduce bulk.
making patch pockets
After grading and clipping, turn pocket right side out and using a point turner work the corners out to a nice clean point.  
making patch pockets
Apply steam while rolling the edged between your fingers to work the seam line out.  Be mindful to roll the lining behind so that it does not peek out from behind the face fabric.
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                                      Once patch is shaped and pressed out, run a basting stitch to hold layers into position.
making patch pockets
                                                                                           
                                                                                               Slip stitch the side open together.
making patch pockets
Apply desired top stitching, either by machine or by hand.  I have chosen to use a charcoal embroidery floss for a hand pickstitched finish.  Note:  For best results, patch pockets should be hand-stitched directly to the garment.  Machine top stitching is applied before the pocket is hand-sewn onto the coat.
pickstitch on patch pocket
Next, cut pocket flap and interface on the side that will present on the coat.  I like to cut the interfacing on the bias to assist the flap in  curving against the contours of the body. 
making a pocket flap
                                      Turn and press the seam allowance on the edge without interfacing and stitch the side seams.
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                                                                    Align flap according to pattern markings and stitch into place.
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                     After stitching flap into position, trim off excess seam allowance an steam edge upward toward the inside of flap.
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                                                                     Hand stitch flap closed being careful to encase seam edges.
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Once hand stitching is completed, lightly press flap into position over the patch pocket for a beautifully completed patch pocket and flap.                       
completed patch pocket andflap

Sewing Remake – Coming Out of the Closet

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Breathing New Life Into An Old Garment

Red Melton CoatI recently re-worked a bright red melton coat I made in 2002.  (When I started writing this entry I thought it was maybe five years ago.  A trip to my pre-digital photo album took me back to 2002… yikes how time flies)  This coat was made from a great pattern, now discontinued,Vogue 1853.  It has wonderful back detailing including an inverted back pleat with hand embroidered chevrons at either end.

red melton, back detail

Making this coat was a couture experience from start to finish and I was very happy with the results when I first completed it.  Even so, I didn’t wear it all that much; looking back I think it was because that back pleat wasn’t easy to wear… I was constantly fussing with when sitting down.

Vogue 1853

The last time I took it out to wear, I noticed it had become ultra-fitted in the waist.  (oh, what could it be?)   All that wonderful back pleating wasn’t hanging as it should and instead was poking out in an unflattering way, because of my increasing girth… and since then,  I more or less stopped wearing it.  I decided this was the year to take it out of the closet and see what I could do to make it more wearable.

I set out analyzing what exactly wasn’t working for me and how I might be able to alter it to improve the fit.  I began by removing the back darts to give a bit of breathing space… this is tricky, because darts have a way of leaving marks.  To my surprise, they steamed out beautifully.  Even though I loved the detail and remember having put tremendous effort into it, the only option was to eliminate the pleat and that meant the chevrons I had labored over had to go, too… ouch!   I took out the entire back seam and trimmed excess to make 5/8 inch seam allowances.  To do this, I had to open up the seam where the collar attached to the body of the coat.

opening collar seam

Once the collar seam was opened, I then stitched up the back seam.   I still had some of the original embroidery floss used for the pickstitches and added that to the back seam line.  This is time-consuming, but I like the understated look of it.

back seam with pickstitch

With the leftover excess fabric trimmed from the back, I created a back belt and inserted that into the two back seams at the waistline.  It was also embellished with pickstitching for accent.

back belt with pickstitch accent

Here is the result.  No more hiding in the closet… this cheerful wrap is on its way to becoming my new favorite, wear anywhere, coat.  Red is such a nice color for the gray days of winter.

red melton, back view

red melton coat