This was one of those projects that you'd think I didn't really want to do, based on all the feet dragging. But it had nothing to do with not wanting to make a jacket… it was fear, plain and simple. Cutting into this sublime coat fabric and putting in a zipper, having done the zipper thing only once before, can you say trepidation? Add to that this coat pattern has no English instructions and I've never sewn a coat before! Gasp. I know. Sewing through this jacket was, dare I say, empowering. Learning new skills, and coming out the other end with something that I'm happy with is a glorious feeling!
All that feet dragging nearly made this jacket miss the show. But low and behold, we're taking a nose dive from 78 degrees yesterday to lows in the teens for a couple of days. hmm, I wonder if I could whip a couple more of these babies out for the other girls. Yah, right who am I kidding!
This coat comes from Ottobre Magazine 4/02. Since there aren't English instructions I thought a little "sewing guide" might be helpful. This is offered for your consideration as a way to hopefully save you the use of a seam ripper here or there. This is certainly not the only way to construct the jacket and if there's another method you prefer, by all means use it
When tracing make sure you stop at the scissor line on the coat bodice and sleeves and add seam allowances there, then trace out the bottom piece with s.a. so that your sleeves don't end up too short. This coat is pretty long, so it wouldn't be the end of the world if you didn't do it on the front and back pieces but it would effect the zipper placement marking.
1. Sew the bottom portion of the sleeves and front and back pieces together. My fabric is water resistant poly on one side and wool on the inside. I used the wrong side of the fabric for the bottom trim.
2. sew shoulder seams, right sides together, to join the back to the 2 front pieces.
3. Mark pocket placement and cut a slit on the both sides of the jacket fronts. On 2 pocket pieces mark and cut a slit for the opening. Lay 1 pocket piece on top of the jacket, matching up the slits, right sides together. Stitch around the cut opening with a 1/4" allowance.
4. Turn your pocket to the inside of the jacket. Take one of the un"slit" pocket pieces and lay it on top of the stitched pocket, right sides together. Sew only the straight side of the pocket together. Fold open.
5. At the pocket opening on the jacket front pin the pocket fabric so that it meets and makes a nice pocket opening. Top stitch close to the seam.
6. Back to the wrong side of the jacket you can finish up your pocket by folding the right sides together and stitching the remaining seams. When the pocket is assembled turn the jacket to the front, mark the narrow zig zag lines and secure your pocket in place with zig zag stitches (I used settings length .5 width 4.5)
7. Attach the collar.
I finished the outside collar edge with bias trim before attaching it to the jacket. Alternatively, you could wait and add the bias trim at the same time you are stitching bias to hem the bottom of the jacket. Either way, this is the method I used.
- open up bias, fold over the short edge to the wrong side and stitch along the fold. Stop stitching 1/2" or so from the end. Snip off the bias and fold it under, continue stitching to the edge. Now fold your bias toward the wrong side of the jacket and stitch from the right side securing the bias on both sides.
I wanted to have the wrong side of my fabric as the right side of my collar, so I put the right side of my fabric to the right side of my jacket. This way when the collar was turned down the pink wool is on top. To cover my serged seam I used bias trim and used a wide decorative stitch to make sure it was secure. I forgot but this would be the time to add a ribbon loop to the center of the back for easy hanging.
8. Add ribbon at sleeve seam, if desired. Hem your sleeves. I attached the bias for the sleeve and jacket bottom using this method.
- lay bias trim open, matching edges, right sides together. Sew along the first fold line. Fold the bias down on the fold but leave it straight and flat.
- sew the jacket arm and side seam in one motion, starting at the bias trim along the arm seam and then the side seam.
- fold bias trim along folds and stitch near the folded edge on the top of the jacket, in the round.
9. Add ribbon trim along the bottom seam, if desired.
10. undo zipper and lay it right sides together with the jacket front pieces. (zipper pull on the left – as you view it) Line up the bottom zip stop with the marking from your tracing. Stitch witchery or another bonding tape is very helpful to keep the zipper in place. Otherwise pin the zipper in place. Attach the zipper foot onto your sewing machine. Starting at the bottom of your zipper stitch 1/4" from the zipper teeth all the way up. Turn zipper and fabric toward the back and topstitch along the zipper opening from the front side of your jacket front, again starting at the bottom. At the top of the zipper I folded under the extra zipper fabric and stitched horizontally to secure.
Since this post is seriously image heavy stay tuned for the plethora of "jacket in use" shots in another post.