Monday, March 23, 2020

A Pink Sequin Jacket - Vogue 9275

"Leave a little sparkle wherever you go" - Anonymous

Just doing my part to leave a little sparkle behind - along with some stray sequins - with my new pink sequin jacket.
I started sewing the jacket the end of February but took a break when we had friends visiting.  We took a mini vacation to Waco (Magnolia Silos!) and San Antonio.

Within days of our friends leaving to return home, everyone in the country was being asked to practice "social distancing".  With my slightly suppressed immune system we took the advise to heart. I choose to stop my weekly volunteer activities, and to not go to the gym to workout.

Here we are just two weeks later. My gym is closed, the place where I volunteer is closed, my church is having services online, and my hubby is working from home.

It feels surreal and I suspect you can relate. It's odd because when I want to stay home and sew I'm incredibly productive. But now knowing that I have to stay home I feel unmotivated and distracted.

So I am forcing myself to keep a routine. And that includes daily sewing time.
Okay, back to my jacket. I did not want this to become another sewing WIP, so I put aside other projects and finished it this past weekend.

The pattern is Vogue 9275, released in 2017. It includes the long bomber jacket, pullover top, leggings, and pants.

I got it into my head that I *needed* a sequin bomber jacket this spring. Yes of course I could buy one, but what fun is that?

I remembered that I had purchased two yards of pink sequin fabric from a remnant bin at SR Harris (for a grand total of $10). Well, two yards was all I needed for this jacket!
The pattern is rated "Easy" and is available in XS to XXL.  I cut and sewed a M (12-14), which is the size I normally use for tops and jackets.

This baby is big! To be fair to Vogue Patterns, the description DID say "very loose-fitting". I just figured that meant I would not need to do an FBA (which I didn't). It is a bit big in the shoulder area but it's not that noticeable.
I shortened the jacket by 2", and used a 20" separating zipper (instead of 24") as that is the size I had on hand that coordinated.

I only lined the jacket body as I liked the look of the semi-sheer sleeve. The jacket could easily be made reversible if you do line the sleeves.

For the sleeve cuffs and collar I used a light pink knit from an Emma One Sock bundle. She doesn't post those bundles very often but if you ever have a chance purchase one! They're a lot of fun and the smaller pieces are perfect for things like this.
The jacket is top stitched around the neck and front edges.
Although the front lining still likes to pop out occasionally.

The Microtex Sharp needle seemed to work best for me sewing the sequins.
Every seam in the jacket is a French seam. Well, except for the seam attaching the knit collar to the jacket. But all the others are, including the in-seam pocket that is hidden inside of the lining.  I did so because my lining fabric raveled easily and I wanted to try and keep it from ripping inside my jacket.

Sequins + French Seams + Matched Stripes deserves a moment of recognition, don't you think?

I'm really happy with my new jacket, although I must say that I feel a bit overdressed wearing it to vacuum and dust ;-)


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Friday, March 20, 2020

Papercut Sapporo Coat in Blue Wool and Faux Fur

I sewed a coat for someone else! A gorgeous blue wool Sapporo Coat with faux fur sleeves.
In late winter 2019, right before I discovered I'd need major surgery (read about it in this post), my cousin showed me a child's coat that she discovered online, and asked if I'd sew her an adult sized one. The coat was unique in that it had faux fur trim in the middle of the sleeve. Of course I said yes!  After all, she's family AND has been cutting and styling my hair for more than twenty years. I was thrilled to be able to use my talent to give back to her.

I immediately purchased a beautiful bright blue wool and faux fur from SR Harris.
But I was stuck as to which pattern to use.

Then Boom! It hit me! The Papercut Sapporo Coat would be perfect! While it didn't have the same shape as the child's coat, the cocoon shape would look fabulous on my cousin.

Fortunately she was extremely patient with me, as I wasn't able to sew her coat until this year due to the surgery, cross-country move, yadda yadda yadda.

When we visited Minnesota in November 2019 I brought the shell of the coat (seams basted, no lining) so she could try it on and give her approval as to whether I should continue or find a new pattern.

Success! She loved the cocoon shape. Yea, it was pretty oversized on her (I sewed the XS)  but she liked the look. 
I was still planning on adding the faux fur between the dropped shoulder and lower sleeve.

However, we decided it would look better to just sew the lower sleeve out of the faux fur. I do think we made the right decision.
I used lining fabric for the backside of the lower sleeve instead of self fabric as designed.  I used a champagne colored coat lining from Emma One Sock.

By the way, no matter what fabric you use, consider using lining for the inside of the lower sleeve instead of the self fabric. That lower sleeve is just too bulky otherwise.

I had purchased the lining based on yardage listed on the pattern, but ended up being short about 1/2 yard when I decided to line the inside of the lower sleeve.

I immediately went to the EOS website to order more lining, but that particular color was no longer available!  I contacted EOS hoping that perhaps it was just out of stock, but alas, I discovered the manufacturer had discontinued the color. As I began an internet search for something similar I received an email from EOS. They had searched and found two yards on a shelf, was I interested? YES! And I have to give a huge shout out to EOS for going above and beyond in helping me locate additional lining.

When I cut the lining out I added an ease pleat to the center back and lengthened the lining pattern piece so it would gently fold over the hem.  This is just something that is typically already drafted in a lining pattern for a coat - or at least in coats I've sewn. 

After the fact I discovered this blog post from "Sewing Like Mad" that basically said it appeared there were issues with the drafting of the coat pattern piece.  Apparently you can get a revised pattern if you can show proof of purchase. Since I purchased my hard copy from Fabric Mart Fabrics I'm unable to get a replacement. Fortunately I had instinctively realized the lining needed to be adapted.

 I added piping between the lining and the facing as I think this little detail really elevates the look.
I used a metallic gold piping I found at Hobby Lobby. I did have to serge the raw edge as the piping fabric unraveled easily.
I also included a label, care instructions (dry clean only), and a size label.
Probably my favorite part of the entire coat is the front pockets!
Other than the lining, the pattern was easy to sew, and I think it is a fabulous design. I sure with I'd taken more pics of the coat before I shipped it to her.

She now has her new coat but has been extremely busy so I don't have a photo of her modeling the coat yet. I'll post on my Instagram account when I do!

Blessings. Pin It

Saturday, March 07, 2020

Floral Wrap Jacket using a Vintage Betsey Johnson Pattern from the 1970s

I have a fairly large collection of vintage 1970s Betsey Johnson sewing patterns. When I decided to participate in the #sewvivjoyvintage challenge on Instagram I knew it was time to pull one out and sew it up! I used Butterick 3290 and sewed the topstitched wrap jacket.
From what I can tell, the pattern is from 1973. There is no date on the pattern envelope or instructions, so I dated it based on pattern numbers on the Vintage Pattern Wiki that were close to this one that had a date of 1973.

The pattern includes the wrap jacket with tie belt, wide let pants, and a mini skirt. Don't you just love those illustrations!?!
Pattern cover of vintage 1970s Betsey Johnson sewing pattern Butterick 3290
The fabric is a scuba knit from Boho Fabrics. It was lighter weight than I expected, but it ended up working perfectly for this design. 

My original thought was to sew the wrap jacket with matching wide leg pants. Kinda trendy with the all over print jumpsuits and matchmaking floral blazers and pants I've seen in the fashion mags and online.

Instead of using the pants pattern provided with the pattern, I sewed McCall's 7786.  This is now the fourth (or is it fifth?) pair I've sewn. I choose that pattern because the bottom width of the pant leg was identical to the Betsey Johnson pattern and would mimic the look on the pattern cover.  The Betsey Johnson pattern is only one size. While the jacket fit me with minimal alterations, the pants were too small and I didn't want to bother altering them larger.

By the way, the bottom width of the pants is 31-3/4" in the size I sewed.
While I like both pieces, I'll probably wear them as separates. I've worn the jacket quite a few times already and have found that I tend to wear it open with the belt untied. 

One reason I picked the vintage pattern is because that wrap jacket is SO similar to current designs!  I've learned over the years to look at the lines of patterns, and not necessarily the fashion illustrations or model photos. 

For example, the McCall's 7912 wrap jacket has a shawl collar, no closure, and tie belt. The main difference is my 70s pattern has bell sleeves but that's an easy pattern alteration,.
McCall's 7912 pattern envelope with wrap jacket views
McCall's 7912 photo from McCall
Just goes to show everything old is new again. ;-)

My jacket has a lot of top stitching, per the pattern design. I choose a mustard yellow thread designed for top stitching. I thought the mustard yellow would help pull out the yellow flowers, but in reality the floral pattern is too busy to see the top stitching.
I didn't use a double needle. Instead I stitched the first row of stitches and then used the edge of my pressure foot to line up the second row.
I had SO MUCH TROUBLE with the topstitching!  It would play nice for a few inches and then boom! Stitches would pull to the back side, or skip. Then back to stitching nicely again. 

 I played with the tension. I tried stablizer on the backside. I added interfacing to the hem areas.
I changed the needle to one designed for topstitching.
Aargh!  I almost ripped out all of it and was going to settle for plain black. But I kept going and as long as you don't look TOO closely on the back side it's all good :-) 

Oh! One thing I forgot to mention. The pattern was missing the second sheet of instructions. Of course it was for the construction of the jacket. Fortunately it was an easy jacket and I am sure there were no cool designer secrets included.

The pattern did include a dart (and the weirdest dart - it was soooo high!). I did an FBA and lowered the dart. I also added belt loops. There was no pattern piece for the belt loops so I'm assuming the (missing) instructions included thread loops to hold the belt in place.

I'm quite pleased with my floral explosion!  I do believe I will wear the two pieces together - at least once.
And continue to pair it with a tee and jeans.  

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Monday, February 24, 2020

Metallic Gold Jacket with Statement Sleeves ~ Vogue 1667 Pattern Review

The moment this pattern was released I knew I wanted to sew the jacket. I was in love with those sleeves! And sewing it out of a metallic gold fabric makes me love it even more. 
The statement sleeves are what attracted me to the pattern, a lot of fullness and an open slit starting near the elbow.
The pattern is Vogue 1667. When it was first released I thought the pattern for the red pants was included, but it is not. The pattern for the pants with the button front trim is Vogue 9282.  I do wish that information had been included on the pattern envelop as it would have saved me the trouble of enduring the super slow Vogue website while I searched for the pattern.  Boy, do I sound lazy or what?!? :-)
The jacket pattern is rated Average and fabric suggestions are crepe, gabardine, and men's suiting. My gold/black metallic fabric is a crepe purchased from SR Harris on one of my recent visits to Minnesota.

The jacket is partially lined, with a notched collar, front button closure, and option for patch pockets and sleeve flounces.

Oh!  I almost forgot to mention one of the best things about this pattern!  It has A, B, C, and D cup size pattern pieces included.  I used the D cup pattern piece lowering the fullness by 3/4".

Well you know I wanted those sleeve flounces!
I first thought about sewing this jacket - and the pants - in a bright pink woven stretch suiting I have in my stash. However, once I received the pattern I realized I only had enough fabric to sew the jacket.  Okay, no biggie. I can sew those pants in black :-)  But then I realized my pink fabric was too heavy for those sleeves.

You see the fullness is created with pleats along the back side. Plus the inside of the sleeve is designed to be sewn out of the jacket fabric.
Yes I could have used the pink lining like I ended up doing on my metallic jacket, but I had already changed my mind and decided to sew this jacket from the metallic fabric.

So let's talk about that pink lining, okay?

If you follow the pattern instructions you will line the upper back, the patch pocket, and the upper portion of the sleeves. I'm not sure why pattern pieces and instructions to fully line the jacket were not included.

I drafted a full back and a side front lining piece, and also choose to line the inside of the sleeve flounce instead of using the jacket fabric (okay, I'll admit it's because I didn't have enough fabric).  Instead of bagging the lining, I ended up hand stitching the lining in place along the upper and lower sleeve seam (by the elbow).
I know pink might not seem the logical color choice for this jacket's lining, especially since it peeks out in the sleeve flounces, but I really like it. It's completely unexpected, and I've always been a fan of bright pink.

I tried the jacket on to determine where to place the closure, instead of going by the pattern piece. It feels comfortable where I have it, but looking at these pics I move it down another 1/2" or so.
Which I can do because there is no buttonhole! Yep, you read that correctly. This fabric hated - and I do mean hated - buttonholes with a passion! I fought the good fight, I really did. I tried different needles and different thread and stabilizing the backside. I even pulled out my old Elna sewing machine (which I'm not a fan of but I keep on hand as a backup machine), but I finally raised the white flag and gave up. I almost stitched a buttonhole by hand, but in the end I simply stitched a large snap to the jacket and called it a day.

I'm really pleased with my jacket! While I sewed black pants to wear with the jacket, in all reality I will likely pair it with a tee and jeans.

Blessings! Pin It

Tuesday, January 07, 2020

It's All About the Sleeves ~ Vogue 9243 Top

My last make of 2019 was this princess seam top with statement sleeves!
I wore the top, along with my sequin print pants, to dinner on New Year's Eve. (Review of the pants coming soon.)  Because we decided to go out to dinner only three days prior, I didn't have much time to sew something to wear. I don't know why, but I always think I need something new when it's a special night.
At first I dug through my BurdaStyle magazines looking for a dress to sew. As I was considering a number of designs, I thought about where we are currently living.  A party dress would work in the metropolitan area we left behind but not so much here, especially at the restaurant we were going to.

I'm so glad I choose to wear this top and pants instead of going with my original plan. I felt that I was dressed pretty casually, but I was by the far the most dressed up person in the restaurant.
The pattern is Vogue 9243. It's an Easy Options pattern featuring a princess seam top with a back zipper and sleeve variations.
It's designed for woven fabrics.  I ended up using a black ponte knit, because I couldn't locate the piece of black silk I know I have - at least I hope I still have it. It may not have survived the big sewing room purge of 2019 that coincided with the big move. Anyway, I think the ponte knit worked great, and it's so comfy because of the stretch.

I knew I wanted to use the novelty knit for the sleeves, and debated between view A (top green one one the envelop) and View F (bottom blue one on the envelop). View A won only because I didn't have enough of the novelty knit for View F. 

French Seams were used for the underarm seam, and I left the bottom edge of the sleeve unhemmed.
I did my usual alterations - a full bust adjustment (about 1"), a slight forward shoulder adjustment, and slight sway back adjustment.  I did scoop the neck by about 2" additional inches.

With the ponte knit I probably could have gotten by without the back zip, but ended up adding it. Now that the top is complete I can indeed get in and out of it without a zipper.

The novelty knit is a fine net with a series of two different size squares of netting tacked on to create the texture.  With some time and patience one could reproduce the look. 
When I'm wearing the top I want to walk around gently waving my arms up and down showing off the movement of the sleeves - but that's not very practical, is it? :-) 

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