Thursday, 28 August 2014

Jackie Coat Sewalong - My Finished Coat

My finished Jackie is made from a 100% wool coating from The Fabric Store Sydney.

Iconic Patterns Jackie Coat

It is a standard size 8, grading out to a 10 in the hips with a centre front opening instead of the asymmetrical opening and slightly rounded collar points.  Everything else is as per pattern with no other changes.

Iconic Patterns Jackie Coat

Well, there is not much else to say about my finished Jackie as I have already documented each and every step already, you can see all those posts here.

Iconic Patterns Jackie Coat

I used extra large fabric covered buttons and love how they look, especially with the bound buttonholes. I am a huge fan of bound buttonholes, they are really worth the extra work to get them looking just right.

finished buttonhole with button1

I like it equally dressed up with a pencil skirt like I have here or worn casually with a long sleeved knit wool top and jeans.

Iconic Patterns Jackie Coat

And here is a close up of the back - I love the position of the raglan sleeve seams, they give a really nice line to the back.

Iconic Patterns Jackie Coat

The skirt I am wearing here is McCalls 5523, one of my favourite skirt patterns, blogged here.

Iconic Patterns Jackie Coat

I am sorry about the overall blurry/out of focus element to these shots - the result of a tiny window of time for photos and a self timer on the tripod - the camera really hated the wall I am standing against.  Mmmm beige on beige.

Iconic Patterns Jackie Coat

The lining is a lovely silk twill which was a joy to sew and to wear, also from The Fabric Store.

Iconic Patterns Jackie Coat

Although I toyed with the idea of changing the collar, the high neckline makes this coat very warm when buttoned up and no need for a scarf.

Iconic Patterns Jackie Coat

If/when you have a finished Jackie you would like to share, you can either upload them to the Flickr group here or email me directly - you can find my email here or leave a comment below.  And make sure you pop over to Maria's blog to see her post on her finished Jackie - as expected, it is vibrant and lovely.

All the posts from the sewalong are here plus there are heaps of construction and finished photos over on the Flickr group here.

Wednesday, 27 August 2014

Jackie Coat Sewalong - Buttons and Finishing and High Fives all round

By now you have bagged your lining, given everything a good press, and just need to sew on your buttons.


There are a few things to know that are very helpful when sewing buttons on a coat, which is much thicker than usual.

The first is to be sure to use a button with a shank, or create your own when sewing on the buttons.

There are already a heap of great tutorials online about how to do this:

A great step by step tutorial, including how to use a backing button is here
Some different methods of creating a shank on a flat button is here.

Or you can watch this handy tutorial here:

The backing button is used to help stabilise the button on the front of the coat and prevents any ripping or tearing that can sometimes occur when using a bigger button that is going to see a fair bit of wear.  I like to use one on coats because it also is prettier to look at than a clump of thread.

backing buttons

Now all you have to do is wear your Jackie with pride! 

Thanks for joining in the sewalong, I hope you had fun and have a huge sense of accomplishment and satisfaction now you are done (and something to wear as the weather cools down as well).  

All the posts in the sewalong are here.
Lots more construction photos in the Flickr Group here.
Maria and I will be posting our finished Jackie's up tomorrow, so stay tuned folks.

Tuesday, 26 August 2014

Jackie Coat Sewalong - Bagging the lining!

Bagging a lining is fun but freaky.  Midway through it you get to a stage where it looks like origami gone wrong in the worst way.  And then all of a sudden you have a beautiful lined coat.  Like magic. The instructions for bagging a lining in the Jackie Coat instructions are excellent.  If you follow them step by step you should get a good result, but here are some extra pictures and information to help you along.

By now you have attached your facings to your jacket, which also completes your collar.  Now is also the stage to complete your buttonhole facings.

I find it useful to read as many "bagging a lining" tutorials as I can as different pictures and explanations often help it to "click".   As well as the pattern instructions, some helpful ones I have used are the Grainline Studios Tutorial (featuring a really cute little mini jacket), this one from Pattern, Scissors, Cloth (slightly different but awesome technique), and I always find the tutorials over at Fashion Incubator excellent, and this one on bagging a lining is great.  These tutorials do vary slightly from the Jackie pattern in how the hem is finished but are still very useful to read.

The basic steps to bagging a lining are:

1. Assemble your lining pieces to make your lining "shell", leaving a gap in the side for later turning.
2. Lay your lining right sides together to your jacket, pining all along the facing edges and matching notches.

lining about to be bagged

3. Sew lining to jacket along facing edges, leaving the bottom 4" (10cm) unsewn.  You will find you have to ease your way in around the curvy parts like the collar facing, but trust your notches and it all works out perfectly.   I sometimes find that it helps to start from the centre point of the back neck facing and sew down each side of the jacket in two steps which helps prevent fabric creep while sewing.  A walking foot is also very useful.  I use mine for nearly the entire sewing process when sewing thicker fabrics and multiple layers like you do with jackets and coats.

 Remember to start and end sewing 10 cm or 4" from the bottom - you will sew this small section closed as part of finishing off the hem.

4. Sew your lining hem to your jacket hem.  As your lining is shorter than your jacket you have to pull the lining down to reach the hem.

5. Sew your facing hem.  When sewing the facing hem you must start and end at the dot (shown as the cross in my picture).  Be precise.

inside view bagged lining sewing facing hem

6. Sew your "tricky corner" which is where your lining hem intersects with your facing edge.  This step allows for a neat 100% machine sewn finish of that tricky corner where your hem joins your facing.  It is hard to explain and the instructions really don't make sense until you are actually doing the steps, and then at all comes together in a massive "aha" moment.   You can see in my picture below, because of turn of cloth and the amount I rolled my facing seam so that it can't be seen from the front, my facing finishes a bit further in than the pattern allows.  I just trimed that excess on the jacket hem off (where you can see the diagonal blue line finish).

inside view corner facing and hem bagged lining before sewing

The things to know to make it easier are.  That mark on the facing hem (you can see it above in blue as a cross) is really important.  When you clip to your sewing line, clip through both layers of fabric.  Once you clip the next steps become much clearer.

And there you have it - a lovely finish complete with pleat for movement, all done by machine. 

tricky corner bagged lining

7. Sew your sleeve lining to your jacket sleeves.  This is where you make your jacket look like a turtle.  Once again, this really only makes sense as you follow the instructions while actually doing the steps.  You can refer to the online tutorials I mentioned above for some more illustrations to help you with this.    (Grainline Studios Tutorial and the Fashion Incubator Tutorial).

8. Turn your jacket right side out through the gap you left in the lining and press your hems into place.  I find doing this helps me make sure everything is sitting right before I "commit".  Sometimes I unpick and redo, especially that "tricky corner" area. 

9. Turn your jacket inside out again and secure your seam allowances where they meet at the hem points.   You do this so your hem sits nicely and doesn't drop down or sag. You can do this by machine or by hand (I like to do it by hand with some loose catch stitches).  I find I prefer to do this after I have turned and pressed the hem and made sure it is in the right place, then I turn my jacket inside out again and secure the hem.   This requires a bit of contorting but looks lovely once the jacket is right side out again. Rather than repeat all the steps again here, pop on over to the tutorial on this for some step by step pictures on how this works, but essentially you are sewing your two seam allowances together where the hem seam and jacket body intersect.  Simple but very effective, plus completely invisible.

A note about grading your seam allowances.  Triming and grading your seam allowances really helps to give a good finish once everything is turned right side out.  Here is a tutorial about seam grading from A Fashionable Stitch.  I also use a trick I read about (I think it was on the Sunnygal Studio blog but darned if  I can find it now) which is to pull a few threads out rather than trimming the seam down, which dramatically thins out the seam allowance of thicker fabric with no harsh ridges.  It only works on straight warp or weft threads but is an easy way to grade seams.

Once your seams are all graded, secured, and all is as it should be, the jacket is turned the right side out again for the final time and you slip stitch your opening in the lining.

Here is a photo of my finished lining hem at the back.

Jackie Coat Bagged Lining

And a dodgy photo of the whole lining taken in bad light on the dining table but you get the idea:

Jackie Coat Bagged Lining

Any questions about this process, just leave a comment.

All the posts for the sewalong can be found here.

Sunday, 10 August 2014

Jackie Coat Sewalong: Buttonhole Facings

We are not doing the openings in the facings for our buttonholes until AFTER the facings are attached but I thought I would detail the methods we can use for our buttonhole facings - the opening in our facing so the buttonholes go all the way through.  (The post for the facings and linings will be up soon, I will update this post with the link then).

The instructions recommend a hand sewing method, which is also my prefered way as it gives total accuracy with the window position. If this doesn't appeal to you, further down this post I give links so some tutorials using a second method using fusible interfacing which I've also used successfully in the past, but you will need to do that one before you put your lining in.

First Method for Buttonhole Facings

There is an excellent tutorial on how to do the buttonhole facing method that I am showing below at SunnyGal Studios, so go and check that out.  If you read through the comments there you will see why we wait until the facing is all attached before making our openings: due to "turn of cloth" the final position on the windows will be slightly different for everyone, and is the reason why they are not marked on the pattern piece.

To help with my turn of cloth and to secure my facings in the right position, I use vertical basting.  After I roll my facing and collar seam to the back so it can't be seen and give it a good press with steam I use this technique to hold everything in place.  I first used this technique when making my Colette Anise Jacket and have used it ever since.  You can read the Colette tutorial here (scroll to the end of the tutorial).  You don't have to do this step, but I like to, it just keeps everything where I want it to be.

vertical basting holding seam in place

Once I have your facings in the right place, baste around each buttonhole:

baste around buttonholes

Mark the position of your buttonhole:

buttonhole windows mark position with pins

And carefully open it up, making sure you don't catch the front jacket:

buttonhole window carefully open

buttonhole window cut open

Tuck the ends under and hand sew using small stitches so it is nice and secure:


Alternative Method for Buttonhole Facings

If you are using a fabric that frays alot and you know this will be a nightmare for you, then there is another technique that works well, but you will need to do it before you put your lining in.  

Mark your buttonhole window position as above, but don't baste the two layers together as you need to open up your facing to access it.  In this case I would say the vertical basting step is more important so you can be sure your facing is in the right position as this method is a little harder to get the windows in precisely the right position.  You use a small square of fusible interfacing to make a window.  It makes for a lovely finish, and you can find great tutorials on this method here (scroll down to the buttonhole facing section), here (this tutorial uses organza instead of fusbile interfacing) and here (scroll down to the section on the facings).

I hope that is helpful.  You can find all the posts in the sewalong here.  The Flickr group with more construction photos is here.

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