The time I decided to make a coat
This is my first ever blog post, and I thought I'd start off with a project I made at the beginning of the year. The dark winter nights and short days were getting me down. January is always hard after a busy Christmas season comes to an end suddenly, and I needed a project that was colourful and just for fun. I find that doing something with my hands, like sewing or crocheting, really helps my brain to get moving.
When a new fabric shop opened near my house, I just had to go and check it out. Like Sew Amazing is full of beautiful and modern fabrics. So many project possibilities!
When I saw the mustard yellow wool coating, I knew I had to make a coat. So I trawled Ebay for vintage patterns, and found one to satisfy my 1950's swing coat addiction (I've got a real problem - I definitely don't need as many coats as I have. But I desperately want to look like I'm in a Douglas Sirk or Hitchcock film).
I'd never made a coat before, but sometimes you've just got to go for it. I chose a monochrome dalmatian print lining fabric, because I love a surprise lining in a coat.
I got started cutting out the pattern pieces. Made much easier by having a new loft room with a big empty floor. Made much harder by having my doggie coming to 'help'.
This was the last piece of this fabric in the shop, and was slightly too small. Luckily, I planned to shorten the coat length, so the pattern fit perfectly. I find 1950's clothing can be slightly too long for modern wearing, as it's really designed to be worn with high heels. It's hard enough convincing me to wear heels on a night out. I certainly won't be wearing them to the post office.
The lining fabric was a nightmare to cut out, so the less said about that the better! I really enjoyed making the lined pockets though (above, right). They are just made separately, then attached on top of the coat. This means that a little glimpse of the lining can be seen down the sides of the pockets, which is really nice.
I had a bit of trouble putting the collar on. Mainly because I mis-read the instructions and had to do it backwards. But luckily it worked anyway, as I'm too lazy to unpick things. I find vintage patterns can be like reading a completely different language, so always read the instructions several times before you do anything.
The lining was sewn together separately, then hand stitched into the coat. This was by far the worst bit, and probably took just as long as making the entire coat. Apart from this, this pattern actually was "easy to make".
But I did it! My hand stitching is really messy though, so don't look too close :)
The coat is meant to have one button and loop at the collar to fasten it. I thought about using this giant one from my (huge) button collection. But I still can't decide, so It's buttonless at the moment. Maybe that will be a job for next winter. If you have any button suggestions, let me know in the comments.
I hope I've inspired you to challenge yourself to make something different, just for fun!