Thursday, September 18, 2008

Finishing things up and a new jacket

I am making progress! I have made a pot of blueberry tea to have while I blog. Then I have to study some for this test I am taking on Monday. It may lead to a job as an adjudicator at a tribunal so keep your fingers crossed. Then I will finally have somewhere other than school whence I can wear all my fancy duds! (Hmm, that doesn't look right but my understanding is that "whence" means "to where" so it should be correct.) I'll alternate between studying and sewing to keep fresh at both.
silk tops
First I took a photo of the two tops I finished. I haven't worn them yet but I have worn the cream silk one I made three times now! It works beautifully under a suit jacket and I can get warm at the front of the class without dying from dehydration.
checked woolly jacket
I finally sewed a buttonhole on that checked jacket and finished it with the large, slightly sparkly gold button that won the contest. There is a sparkly gold thread that runs through the brown stripes in the check and I think the button goes well with the whole thing. Not having worn this yet, I will reserve judgment on the total effect.
wool skirt facing
I finished the wool skirt. As usual, I converted darts to ease - those are the wrinkles you see pinned into the skirt as it is attached to the facing. I also basted the lining to the skirt around the top before sewing it all to the facing. That's that line of stitching you see showing on the lining.
wool skirt hem
Because this is such nice fabric and I want the skirt to look polished, I sewed seam binding to the raw edge of the hem and hand sewed the hem up. The lining hem has not been sewed yet - that's the raw pinked edge you see.
wool skirt
Because the skirt is surprisingly heavy, I sewed hangar tabs to the facing. It makes the skirt hang like this and I have to iron it the morning I want to wear it, to get those drape marks out.
wool skirt
But if I hang it with clothespins like this, it falls off the hangar after a while.
old LLBean jacket
In the meantime, I have been thinking about my old LL Bean barn jacket. I have had this great coat for over 15 years now and I used to wash it whenever the dog put her muddy paws on it so it got washed often. Now it has frayed around the pockets (which are lined at the edge with dark green corduroy),
old LLBean jacket
and it has frayed on the sleeves where I used to turn up the cuffs, which are also lined at the bottom edge with the corduroy. I still think I can get some wear out of it so I am wondering if I should get some gimp or other braid and sew it over the broken bits?
jacket pattern
That said, my next project is a new, cool weather jacket. I thought this pattern was so cute, but of course, I cannot imagine making a jacket that you wear outside in anything other than full length sleeves! Maybe someone meant for this jacket to be worn walking around the mall but if I was inside, it would be too hot and when I am outside, I want proper sleeves. So I am going to make it in the full sleeve but with the slash pocket of the other views (A and B). I have not decided on the buttons but I think I will be going for 6 of them, not 4, for better control in the wind. It is certainly not a jacket I would wear when it's minus 10C but I think with the right layers and accessories, I could wear it to minus 5C. I'll let you know later.
dotted lining and boiled wool
When you wear some kind of outer garment 9 months of the year, you want a selection and you want one of them to be red. I have some "boiled wool" in a nice bright red here, although I think it is mixed with some nylon. For a change, I didn't pre-wash it and so once a year, I will have to dry clean this. I think I was afraid the fabric would shrivel into weirdness so I decided to go for dry cleaning later. I also got some "fashion polyester" for the lining. Instead of getting "regular" lining, I saw this fun polka dot stuff on sale and thought it would be cute whenever I took the jacket off. I have not made this pattern before so I suppose I am risking a bit here but it is a coat and so it won't be fitted too closely and I think I can get away with not making a muslin - which I never make anyway. If it doesn't work for me, some lucky Sally Ann client will get a unique jacket!


Pretty Jane said...

I live in the Deep South, and around here where we only wear coats 2.5 months of the year, a 3/4 length sleeve makes a nice transition on those 4 days of fall... We're pretty wimpy, though, so I'd likely do as you are and make the full-length version! Great color, can't wait to see how it turns out!

JuliaR said...

Thanx P. Jane! I used to live in Virginia and I remember how cold it wasn't. This morning it was 2C (35F) and I thought I should have worn some little gloves while walking to college but I didn't get frostbite or anything without them. I just wore a blouse and a wool suit-jacket for layers. I thought about a scarf but I knew it was going to get much warmer for when I walked home (now it is 17C or 63F) so I didn't bother. When it gets to -15C (5F) or below, I opt for the long heavy coat! It just doesn't sound as cold in Fahrenheit!

Carmen said...

Nice tops!!!! The cream one looks so fab on you so we KNOW these will fit the same way. As for the jacket, wow! And yes, full-length sleeves....

So, this exam Monday?? Talk to me.....

SouthernDeb said...

Your projects are beautiful, Julia. Your comments about your old barn jacket reminded me of a barn jacket I sewed several years ago. I used a lighweight quilted demin for the outer fabric and a gorgeous cotton print for the lining. It looks great when I drape it over a chair to show off that lining. I can't wait to see what you do with your jacket pattern; I oogled that one myself at the fabric store.

xup said...

Not to be all poncy about it or anything but "whence" actually means from where, not to where. But man, your sewing rocks!

JuliaR said...

xup! I know it! You are right and I knew it was "from where" but I had a brain fart and could not compute. Good grief. That's why it looked "wrong".

Carmen - already sent you an email!

Thanks S.Deb! I love fun linings. I just got a polyester print for the brick coloured wool I got at Darrell's a couple of weeks ago. Even though not many people see it, you know it is there. Your barn coat sounds totally fun!

passion2sew (Lalli) said...

Hi, I really love the way you show step by step instruction of all the clothes you make. I especially love this jacket. I was thinking of making one since long but I am not able to gather enough courage. :) I wish you were in here in california, I would love to have an opportunity to take some classes from you. :)

Sew Passionista said...

Julia, I just had a look at your blog and I love your work. I'm going to add it to my list.
Happy sewing,

JuliaR said...

Wow, thank for the compliments Lalli and Diana - two passionistas, too! I hope to start sewing something today. I've seen this jacket (a very similar version anyway) now a couple of times in fashion mags and it'll be cool soon so it's time to get going!

Ann's Fashion Studio said...

Nice style jacket and I would definetly make long sleeves too :)
For your LL Bean jacket, can you replace the pocket flaps and cuffs with matching corduroy like the inside?

JuliaR said...

Thanx Ann. I had thought about using corduroy but maybe I was thinking some purchased trim would be simpler to apply. Maybe I should just wear the jacket to the fabric store and try trim out there. Hmm.

Liana said...

I used to do hanger loops on skirts a little differently so that they would hang straight, or at least straighter. I attached one end of the ribbon to the inside front waistband and the other to the inside back of the band opposite each other, and at the point where it would hang nicely on the hanger. You have to make each ribbon long enough to more than go around the side of you so that you can get the skirt on without the ribbon being in the way. Give it some extra slack so that it will hang down and be in no danger of showing. Hope this makes sense, and that it keeps you from so much ironing.

JuliaR said...

Thanks Liana for your great suggestion on hanger loops! I never thought of that and will give it a try on the next skirt!

Susan said...

"Whence" actually means FROM where, not talk about whence something originates, for example....not that it has much to do with sewing!

I admire your persistence in getting your projects done. It always surprises me how long some steps take, like cutting apart the pattern pieces and pressing them. I try to do that before going to bed to encourage myself to get started the next morning, always wishing that the shoemaker's elves would pay me a visit during the night.

JuliaR said...

Hi Susan - just noticed I had not replied. Yes, I figured out the whence thing. I did know what it meant all along - I just had a brain fart.

As you can see from this project (not that it is finally finished), it really did take a long time. I wonder how the next one will go!?