Tag Archives: jacket

The Jump Or Be Pushed Jacket

Some are born great, some achieve greatness, and some have greatness thrust upon them. Shakespearian pick up line? Maybe. But it’s also true, in my experience. And while I would LOVE to think I was born great, and would be willing to state that I, on rare occasions, achieve greatness, more often than not, greatness is thrust upon me. And that’s exactly what happened with my latest, and rather ambitious project, a jacket. You see, just over a month ago, I was contacted by Lisa who works at the fantastic Onlinefabricstore.net. It’s a lovely website full of amazing fabrics whose prices decrease as the amount of yardage in your chart increases (a devious trick, but I can’t say I hate it, oh, no, I simple MUST buy more yardage, the discount!). And Lisa offered me fabric if I would make a jacket and post about it here. She said something to the effect of, “that’s one of your goals for the year, right?”. And I had a moment of, ummmm, is it? Sure. Why not. Jacket. I will just do that. No big deal. But then I actually started thinking about making a jacket, and tailoring and technique and whether or not I was ready for this and then the beautiful fabric came, a linen burlap Lisa requested I use, and it was gorgeous but totally see-through and frays like a live wire and I just thought, oh, holy hell, is this actually something I can do? But then I just went ahead and did it. Because you have to jump in, or risk being pushed. And I would rather be the one making the choice. You dig? And I have to say, for a first jacket, I’m pretty damn pleased with this thing. (Slightly more picturesque shot amongst the ivy. You will note that the notebook matches the dress, which isn’t surprising given that I made the dress and covered the notebook with the same fabric. Jealous?) The pattern is Simplicity 4494, a Vintage 1940’s pattern. Let’s take a look at the cover art, shall we? I went with view II, the collarless one, but I used full-length sleeves because honestly a jacket with 3/4 length sleeves just feels ridiculous. It LOOKS cool, but I can’t imagine ever having occasion to really wear the thing. And here is what I came out with: I must say, I’m pretty pleased with this jacket. For a first try at a lot of things I think it turned out very well, if I do say so myself! The arms are a little baggy, but otherwise the fit is nice. I made a muslin, of course, no way I would cut into this expensive fabric without a tester, and found the fit just a touch closer than I wanted for a jacket, which, presumably, has something going underneath it. A normal person might have re-sized this pattern. I just used slightly smaller seam allowances, 1/2 “, rather than the 3/4” noted in the pattern. Worked like a charm. Who says cheaters never prosper?

Checking out my own lining.

Because the fabric was so loosely woven, I had to underline ever piece of linen. You know what I didn’t know about underlining? It’s insanely easy. You literally baste the underlining to the real fabric and use that piece as one piece. It was so helpful in this case, because marking the linen was impossible, but the underlining, plain black cotton, I would mark with ease. And because the jacket is lined, I didn’t have to worry about those markings washing out! I used vintage white and blue striped cotton shirting for the lining, which I got from my Grandfather’s attic. My grandmother had bought something like 20 yards of the stuff. God knows why. The black underlining came from my stash, as did the button. I might replace this at some point with something fancier, but for now this is fine, and I really wanted to use my stash as much as possible. I am really quite pleased with the fit of this jacket. There is enough ease to be comfortable but the princess seams make it fit smoothly and nicely over my curves. There is a bit of baggyness around the upper back near the arm areas, I think you can kind of see where it’s pulling and not lying flat to the body. But it fits in my (admittedly broad) shoulders. The 40’s is a great era for me, I don’t even need the shoulder pads, which I omitted, because my swimmers shoulders are that prominent. I also made a bound buttonhole. It’s not great. No, you can’t see it. I hide my shame from the world. Instead, look at how nicely it fits at the waist! Focus on the good! See? All better. Happy face! I love my new jacket, guys. It may have taken me 5 days to make, or at least 20 hours and it may not be perfect, but it’s my first foray into the exciting world of tailoring, and I have to say, I can’t wait to do more! Gertie is offering an amazing jacket class….anyone want to buy that for me? Anyone? Bueller? Thank you so much, Onlinefabricstore.net for this gorgeous fabric that I never would have gotten to use otherwise.  And to all you reading, I would advise you to check out the website for your spring sewing needs, they have some amazing stuff on there! And it’s extremely well-organized, which I honestly can’t say for a lot of online fabric vendors. And they delivered my order within two days, which is unprecedented. So go to Onlinefabricstore.net and browse their silks and satins, cottons and wools, linens and knits, because I promise you, it’s worth it! Consider this your chance to have greatness thrust upon you! See? It’s totally a pick up line. Seriously. Malvolio? More like MalvoliHO! Or maybe just ignore that and look at my pretty jacket. What? I always read standing against a wall of greenery in a hand-made jacket. Don’t you?

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Filed under Clothing, Fabric, Sewing, Simplicity Patterns, Vintage

All Jacked Up

Something just happened to me that never happens to me. Let me just say that I am not a winner. Oh, I don’t mean I don’t achieve things, because I am a little achievement bunny and I live to achieve. But I wouldn’t say that I’m particularly lucky. Well, I live in the first world and have a loving family and my health and the ability to pay for my life, so yes, I’m very lucky, blah blah grateful blah. But I don’t win, like, contests. Or free prizes. Or quizzos. (That’s quiz night or quiz bowl, for those of you who don’t use the term quizzo. Which you should. Because it’s awesome.) The last two things I have won include a basket of Avon products I won last summer, and the one and only quizzo I’ve ever won last December, all because I guessed the best on the question “what is the population of Latvia”. It was at the Latvian Society. You don’t have one of those? Tough luck. Move to Philadelphia.

Anyway, the point of this is to set the scene, as it were, for my shock, surprise and delight when I was recently contacted by a lovely person from onlinefabricstore.net, and asked if I would make a spring jacket in one of their fabrics and post about it right here, on this very blog. It took me all of two seconds to respond with a resounding YES PLEASE THANK YOU. And then giggle to myself happily at my desk for the hour before it was time to go home.  What? Fabric makes me happy!

And even though I promised myself I would under no circumstances get any more fabric in any manner, I feel strongly that I can/will make an exception in this case.  Because, guys, this fabric is really nice. REALLY nice….

Oh, it’s linen. And it’s pretty. And it’s burlap. And it’s pretty. Did I mention it’s pretty? Fun fact about this fabric, I emailed several close friends and was like, which color should I go for? And then I completely ignored most of their suggestions and went for Black. Black goes with everything. I like black. What you gonna do about it?

Now the only question is, which jacket should I make with it?! And that’s where I need your help. I’ve never made a jacket before, but it’s very much a goal for 2012. Now, given that this is a linen fabric, which I will line with cotton, this is of course going to be a spring jacket. So I want something lightweight and stylish that provides a nice layer for spring in the Mid-Atlantic. And I want something that isn’t going to take me more then a month to make because A. I have no patience and B. I actually want to wear the damn thing in this spring. So here are some patterns I’ve come up with that I thought might be nice, and I would very much welcome your opinions on the subject.

This is Simplicity 4494, a pattern from 1943 that I recently purchased on Etsy from this lovely seller. I just adore the collarless version, what do you think? Pros, adorable pattern, cons, might be hard to fit being vintage and all. Thoughts?

BurdaStyle’s Stella Jacket. I’ve seen several BurdaStyle members make this and I’ve really liked their variations. Pros, lovely simple shape, shouldn’t be too hard to whip up. Cons, I might not really wear this all too often. It doesn’t really seem like an every day staple, now, does it?

BurdaStyle’s 3/2011 Peplum Jacket. No one seems to have made this pattern on BurdaStyle, which perturbs me, but it’s fairly adorable, don’t you think? I I love me a Peplum. This one seems pleated, which is interesting.

Not the long coat, but one of the short jackets, with the princess seams. It kind of reminds me of this BurdaStyle jacket:

The Steffi. Cute, no?

 

So what do you think? Any one of these strike your fancy? Any other suggestions? I would love to do something from an independent designer but I haven’t come across anything I straight up adored. Right now I’m leaning towards the vintage Simplicity or the modern Simplicity, but I’m open for suggestions! I really need your guidance on this one, so any comments would be highly appreciated!

Incidentally, the population of Latvia is, according to a highly scientific google search, 2,242,916. Just so you know, for quizzo.

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Filed under Burda Style, Fabric, Inspiration, Sewing, Simplicity Patterns, Vintage