Sunday, September 21, 2014

Burdastyle 08/2011 #102

I've made myself a new jacket! A fall jacket like I've been wanting for sometime. I'm not sure exactly what kind of jacket it is, but I've seen the names 'field jacket' and 'cargo jacket' used. Believe it or not, I used the same pattern as my winter jacket just with some alterations.

  • Menorca Plain stretch fabric (97% cotton, 3% spandex)
  • Polyester lining
  • Lots of heavy duty snaps
  • Bias tape
  • Interfacing
  • Thread
  • 10mm elastic

I wanted to use some sort of twill fabric, but I couldn't find any in olive. The only fabric I found was this cotton stretch fabric. I think it ended up working quite well, but there were challenges. My sewing machine had some trouble sewing it and I had tension problems. The right combination seemed to be universal needles (80/12 for most of it and larger for thick seams), a walking foot, and turning the thread tension to near max.


A somewhat altered version of Burdastyle 08/2011 #102. Size alterations were super easy, since I just copied what I did with my winter jacket. Basically, a swayback adjustment and a small bust adjustment. I made a size 40, but could have gone a size down because of the stretch fabric. I ended up taking in the sleeve widths a bit.

Some of the styling alterations I made were to create a separate facing. I cut along the centre front line of the front bodice to do this.

I also created a top front yoke piece by attaching the side and front bodice pieces for the first ~4" and then cutting them along perpendicular to the centre front seam.

The style of jacket I am imitating, as well as jean jackets, use this piece to sew the top pocket flaps into. Here are the pieces partially assembled.

And here is what it all looks like on the finished jacket. It's funny, now that I've done this, I've realized how many jackets have this styling feature and it is really easy to do.

I also changed the epaulette slightly to a shorter version that doesn't double back onto itself. You may also notice that I added shoulder pleats. For some reason, I had way too much sleeve cap ease (maybe I added too much seam allowance to my pattern pieces - the Burdastyle pattern doesn't come with seam allowances). I decided to work with it and created a box pleat on each shoulder that lines up with where the epaulette meets the shoulder seam. Not the look I wanted, but it's growing on me.

I made my own pocket patterns from another jacket that I really loved and that this jacket is replacing. I like them more than the pockets that come with the pattern.

As with the winter jacket, I added a hood. This hood is attached with four snaps along the back of the collar.

I wanted to keep the jacket light and make use of the stretch fabric's stretchiness. If I used a non-stretch lining, then the jacket wouldn't stretch much. So, I only lined the sleeves (you might recall the lining fabric from my winter jacket). A tutorial of a similar thing can be found on the blog Purls and Pleats.

I kept the rest unlined and used flat felled seams and bias tape to finish my seams. For the top back yoke, I used two layers of fabric, which I sometimes see done on dress shirts. This added a bit of stability to this area, it helped hide the tops of the princess seams and the centre back seam, and it made it possible for me to have the epaulette snaps attach only to the top layer and not sit directly on my shoulders.

The last major change was to add a casing for a waistband elastic. I sewed a 3/4" piece along the waist and threaded 10mm (3/8") elastic into it. I went this route because I couldn't find any olive coloured (or even a nice pink) drawstring and I still wanted to have something to pull in the extra ease from using the stretch fabric.

Here is the hood in action. It has a touch of the pink bias tape peeking out.

Overall, I'm very happy with the jacket. It's very light and I love the colour. It's very easy to dress up and down.

Here is the back with the hood detached. I'm ready for fall!

I love this style of jacket and if you like it, it's really easy to take any pattern and make one yourself. For example, someone made a military style Sewaholic Minoru on the blog Cut Cut Sew. It's all about the olive colour and the pockets.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Wardrobe Architect Revised pt.5

I'm going back over Coletterie's Wardrobe Architect and now I'm at Week 9 and 10. Week 9 is about creating a capsule wardrobe. Last time I did this exercise, I was pretty happy with most of my silhouettes. But, some of it, particularly the silhouette for colder weather wasn't that great.

As I mentioned in an earlier exercise, skinny legged pants are what are 'mainstream' right now. So, my silhouette with the flared leg pants is a little out of place. Basically, it's more like what people were wearing ten years ago and the times they are a'changin.  

I came up with three new silhouettes to replace the old one. The first one is not that different from what I said I liked before: pants; cardigan; and simple top. What is different, is I am using skinny jeans and a more flowy top (as discussed for Week 4 revised). 

This second silhouette is almost the same, just with a different top silhouette. 

Finally, this third silhouette is a little more different. Playing with the preppy vibe I'm going for, I want to make a nice shirt in some of my Liberty fabric (that I still have been so indecisive about, that I've done nothing with it!). And I pair it with a nice cable sweater (something I can knit!).


These are three very simple silhouettes that I definitely see me wearing. And it is all very interchangeable. 

And not to forget what else I need to wear in the colder weather, I was thinking of jackets. As I mentioned awhile back, I would love to have a field jacket in an olive green. And maybe I should buy some nice boots to go with it.

And, of course, my winter jacket and my Quincy hat. What I need now is a scarf, some new gloves, and some new winter boots (I'm due for some new one's). I found these boots online - they are LL Bean boots made in Maine. 

I think that will be stylish, warm, and functional, which is what I want.

On to Week 10: The Capsule Palette. Last time, I did this exercise, I had to pick a few colours from my huge assortment and found it very difficult. This time, I'm am not going to bother. I think I did a much better job picking colours to start with for Week 5 and 6 exercises, that I don't feel that I have pare down any more. Here are my colours:

That's it! Almost done redoing this series and it is very useful. I already feel that I'm better at dressing myself and my sewing is much more focused!

Friday, September 12, 2014

Jalie 3242

Well, I haven't posted in awhile! I've been pretty busy, but I've still managed to sew a couple things. Anyways, I would like to show you my attempt at some men's boxer briefs for my husband using Jalie 3242.

My first attempt turned out poorly. The boxer briefs look ok (see picture below), but they were way too tight. It was completely my fault, though. I misread the fabric requirements for the pattern. The pattern calls for at least 70% stretch in all directions (up/down and side-to-side). Somehow, I only thought it needed that much stretch in one direction. So, even though I probably picked the right size, they were way too tight.

My second attempt went a little better. I was able to find some fabric with enough stretch. And, it's very nice looking stripped fabric. I think I did a pretty good job matching up the stripes.

My husband can still get them on and wear them, but they are not perfect. He does not like where the pouch lines sit and would prefer them to be further out. So, now I'm debating whether I should alter this pattern. Or, I could use the men's brief pattern, which has a wider pouch, and lengthen the legs.

Luckily, I bought a lot of the knit fabric knowing I would have to make a few test pairs before finding the perfect fit. Also, they are a super quick sew, so I don't mind making more.

I like that this pattern comes with so many options and sizes. I definitely would love to make myself the perfect pair of underwear, too. I'll let you know how this all turns out.