Vogue 1644 Kathryn Brenne jacket

Such a delightful project with a pattern from a favorite designer.

I really enjoy Kathryn Brenne designs. There is always a bit of detail and opportunity in her patterns. I ordered V1644 as soon as I saw it online.
I’ve been thinking of doing a short jacket, something interesting for church (yes, all the women in church tend to flash their stuff, myself included. Not to mention that it is freezing in there, and a jacket or shawl is a must. I miss it terribly for many reasons and look forward to the time we can resume our church activities).

Meanwhile, I will keep on sewing!

Sewing notes:

  • I sewed a straight size 12 with very few changes.
  • My fabric is Bokeh cotton/linen denim from Moda, purchased at Hawthorne Fabrics. It’s 70% cotton, 30% linen, and it’s not really a canvas. I laundered it 3 times to remove sizing and allow for shrinkage before I cut the pattern. I love it!
  • Having the benefit of a couple of pattern reviews, I reduced the flare in the center back seam. With a rather flat fantail, I don’t need it.
  • Having a small bust, I removed the bust dart in the front princess seam. I thought about taking out some of the curve in the seam, but after basting, I was happy with no change.
  • I went crazy with Hong Kong finishing on the seams, using lightweight cotton/poly broadcloth.
  • The jacket has 3/4 length sleeves, to which I added a ruffle for a full length! After narrowing the bottom of the sleeve, I cut a 17″ x 5″ strip, folded it in half, gathered it, and attached it to the sleeve hemline. I really like this!

My thoughts are with everyone, and I hope you have some nicely distracting sewing projects in play. For now, Coco

Butterick 5533 in pink fleece – love

So many variations, I love this pattern. And this early winter I wanted something pink!

The line art:

For this one, I used the body and just let myself go.

Before I go further, this is based on View B neckline, View A yoke, and the basic body of the jacket. More below.

I was after a zip-front with a stand-up collar, mostly because I was using fleece. Kind of a quasi-athletic jacket with lots of ease and so on. And lots of detail and fun stuff.

A challenge? yes, but I did decide that I was willing to sacrifice this fabric if nothing worked 🙂

Sewing notes:

  • As noted, my starting point was Butterick 5533, which I’ve made in many fabrics with a bunch of fun twists.
  • I sewed the View B collar, which is pretty straight forward. The pattern uses the same front and back for either collar selection.
  • The back is loosely based on View A, but I removed a lot of the width and just gathered the skirt fabric under the yoke.
  • The pockets, well, I rounded the bottom edge. Not a big change, but more interesting. I keep a folder of pockets, cowls, bowties, and so on, so this shape was borrowed. I also lined them, as I don’t want to stuff in my hands and distort the fabric – this is fleece!
  • The biggest change: I decided to put in a separating zipper, instead of using a button front. So I drafted a new front with a 5/8 seam allowance at the center front. And I did the same to the front facing. This is an easy change, do not be afraid to do this, on any pattern! I ran the zipper about 1″ into the collar to provide stabilization and continuity to the entire vision I had. This is a #10 30″ zipper from Wawak.
Basting prep for defining the inserted zipper.
  • I used lots of topstitching. Fleece loves topstitching definition, and the additional threads add stability to the lines of the fabric and garment. Here is the beautiful cuff design (on the pattern), with lots of detail.

Thoughts on sewing fleece:

  • I just put this jacket in the dryer for a lint-catching tumble. And I vacumned and dusted my entire house. Everything I wore while making this is in the wash, pink lint everywhere, little tiny pieces, aarrgh. Almost sneezing. Lesson, just relax and go with it, when sewing fleece or fur (I cut out fur outside in my carport!!)
  • Fleece has a lot of mechanical stretch in all directions and on the bias. Here’s how I pinned the seams – but I also staystiched the neckline, front edge, etc., etc., to combat distortion. I used a long stitch and actually increased the upper thread tension to ensure that the stitches and fabric sides had an even tension. The best approach, of course, is to experiment with your fabric, across the bias, horizontal, vertical, on both your sewing machine and your serger. Seems like a lot, but it’s a bespoke and custom garment, right? One of a kind…

I really love this jacket, even though I’m done with pink and fleece 🙂

Ciao, Coco

Beautiful glorious day and a Gerard Manteau

What a nice day – cool, well, for Floridians, cold 🙂 My new Gerard Manteau is perfect.

This cute and casual jacket from Republique du Chiffon is a gem. It has a semi-grunge aspect – loose and long.

I’m in the back yard, in front of my newly trimmed tangerine tree. I was concerned that it was so full and thick, a hurricane could push it over in a flash. Not now! And the birds love the tree.

Sewing notes:

  • I sewed the size small – a medium would have swallowed me, but would be perfect for fleece or fur.
  • I have the PDF pattern, and the instructions and illustrations (hand-drawn and very small) are minimal. Additionally, only the French instructions are really useable – the English translation provided is just weird. If you’ve made a jacket, you will be fine. This is a very basic pattern.
  • A caution: the pattern does not discriminate sizes by line style – they are all the same solid black line, so don’t drink wine while cutting…
  • The fabric: Heathered Sapphire 100% Cotton Corduroy 66W from Fabric Mart, 7-wale.
  • It did get some special prep work. I serged all the pattern pieces before I started sewing, to prevent bias stretch and loss of fabric on the edges.

Then I vacuumed my entire house!! and cleaned my serger.

  • Originally I used twill tape to define the roll of the lapel. But I found that it distorted the lapel because the wale opened and rolled around. So I took it out.
  • For the same reason, the distortion of sewing across this wide wale, I squared the bottom of the pockets (I love that they are lined, nice touch).

Tree hugger 🙂

Ciao! Coco

Gerard Manteau in corduroy – prep!

Time for a new Republique du Chiffon Gerard Manteau. I’m in love with this casual jacket.

I found a beautiful 7-wale heathered saffire corduroy at Fabric Mart late last year. And I knew it’s destiny.

The prep, driven by my fabric, has taken hours and hours 🙂

Of course I laundered the fabric, and I was rewarded with piles and piles of lint in the dryer. I tumbled it twice to get the last bits off the yardage, and then I cleaned my dryer!

Prep – once I start sewing, I want to work with nice pattern pieces without lint or unexpected bias distortion. So I cut and serged every single piece of my pattern.

As I was cutting, I marked notches with a chalk pencil, but after I serged the edges, I marked them with a small pin. Chalk disappears from corduroy in a flash…

I’m anxious to start, but my interfacing, Pellon SF785 sew-in, is in the laundry. Yes, non-fusible interfacing should be washed and dried… I prefer sew-in interfacing on anything with a wale or heavy texture, as I don’t want to crush the fabric pressing a fusible.

So, next up, my Gerard Manteau! Bye for now, Coco

Butterick 5533 leopard spot fleece jacket

Our temperature dropped into the 50’s Saturday night, which, in Florida, means fleece jacket gratification!

I made this leopard version of B5533 last spring, and I’ve waited until now to wear it 🙂 It’s simply one of my favorite jacket patterns (marigold fleece version here).

Photographs of the details are difficult in this print, but I’ll give it a try.

  • The jacket is a combination of view A (front and collar) and View B (back and pockets).
  • I drafted a front yoke to add topstitching interest and to break up the visual length of the fabric. This is fleece – no way will I try buttonholes in fleece. For closure, I used #4 snaps with buttons on the outside right front.
  • My collar points are rounded, which IMHO adds a softer and more elegant aspect around the face.
  • The view B back is so pretty, I love the deeply curved inset.
Yoke lining in calico

I also made some small fitting adjustments, described in my marigold post.

Love it! Today I’m waiting for house painters to arrive, the next big step for the house. I just had a call from Lowes to advise me that my refrigerator, promised for tomorrow, is delayed until the end of November (mine has a leaky drip pan). That’s OK, I’m so happy here in my new pad.

Ciao! Coco