Jackets

Hello everyone!

I would like to present you the latest big work I am working on : a 1950s suit jacket! It is based on a vintage british jacket I bought on ebay :

I only made the muslin for now, modified the pattern and chose the fabrics! I also read a lot about the traditional interlining and structure of a suit. Now I can’t wait to start sewing it! :)

If any of you have any advices for me for this kind of work, I would be very happy to read them!! :)

If you want to see more about this project, come and visit my blog :)

Thanks for reading!!

 

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Hoffman Construction Co

Felix and Val's

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I picked up this old wool club jacket at an estate sale a few months ago.  The back embroidery was fabulous even though the coat was moth-eaten and very worn.

McCalls 4161

I used McCalls 4161 coat pattern from the 1940s as a starting point to sew up a jacket that actually fit me.  I cut as much as I could from the original navy wool and added a brown plaid to compliment (and of course I needed a matching skirt).

Finally some Spring sunshine in Wisconsin!

pockets mimick the shoulder lapels

elbow patches were my hubby's idea

I love sewing with wool and plaids are definitely my favorite!  Working with this heavy club jacket was a bit tricky though.  The navy wool is so thick and dense, it was tough to bend and roll the seams.  My finishing work on the inside isn’t as pretty as I’d like it to be because I couldn’t roll the salvage edges under.  It was just too bulky.  I also gave up on hand-stitching the cuffs and bottom waistband.  Again, too bulky.  So instead I did some extra top-stitching to really nail the wool flat where several layers met.  More photos and sewing details are on my blog.  And just in case you’re wondering, the construction behind me is a new ram barn.   The old barn had holes in the roof and cracks in the walls.   Seemed an appropriate place to take pics given Felix and Val’s profession.

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The second skirt in my Pendleton quartet is another plaid number. This one is fairly plain as well, with some simple alterations made to change the look up a bit. I widened the waistband and added suspenders. I’ve always really liked the look of the suspender skirt (whether from the 1910s or the 1950s or anywhere in between), and have intended to make myself one for a long time now. I thought it would be a nice silhouette with this plaid also, simple enough to showcase the pattern, but not so overly simplified as to be boring. This piece of wool had just a few moth holes that needed repair, so I set myself to work at re-weaving again. This is a much finer weave than the previous fabric, so it required a little more precision, but it really wasn’t too bad. I have to admit, I think I’m actually getting a little hooked on it. It’s just the kind of insanely meticulous work I find fun and relaxing (’cause maybe I’m a little nuts).

 

After pulling threads from a scrap of the plaid, I set to work reweaving the two holes in the skirt front, and then the two in the suspender pieces.

 

Doing this made me feel a little bit like the woman who made Chanel’s braided trim for decades (although not old, French, and incredibly skilled).

 

You can see the first hole mid-repair just to the right of the pin.

The skirt turned out pretty well, and I had just enough left of the fabric to make a matching hat (because every outfit should have a matching hat, right?). Anyway, I used the Wearing History Sporty Toppers pattern, view 1. I was working with scraps, so the plaid doesn’t match perfectly on top, but it doesn’t bother me too much since there is so much seaming to break it up in the first place. I used a slightly narrower ribbon than called for in the pattern, but I like how it looks.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

To complete my sort of “golf-course” couture look, I managed to finally finish one of my biggest UFOs; this brown wool suit jacket. I started this suit about three years ago, finished the skirt, got about half way through the jacket and then put it on the back burner and left it there to stew. It feels really good to finally have it finished and out of the project pile. It’s far from perfect, but finished it all I was really aiming for at this point, so I’m happy with it. I don’t have all the pattern details in front of me, but I’ll try and dig them up. I’m pretty sure it’s a McCall’s pattern, and it’s from the 50s, but I’m not sure the exact year and can’t remember the number. Anyway, here’s the ensemble all put together and ready for a stroll across the fairway. (Both pieces need a little touch up with the iron).

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So, that’s that. Now on to other projects in the queue. I’ve still got two of the wool skirts to put together, and then numerous other summery projects to start, but I’ve got an Edwardian event to go to in early May that I also have to make some stuff for, and that will probably take precedence. Hope everyone has had a good week!

 

-Evie

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So, I found this amazing pattern for a smoking jacket from 1951, Butterick 1769. Despite being neither a smoker nor an idle rich guy from a Hollywood melodrama, my Husband decided he needed one in classic satin and quilted velvet. He accompanied me to the fabric store on a Saturday (an event never to be repeated), where he picked out this gorgeous Asian style brocade. We splurged and bought the fancy dress velvet to do the collar and cuffs. I made up a muslin sample, which actually fit him pretty good. I just needed to shorten the sleeves and he decided he would prefer a belt to buttons, so I drafted one. This is where the fun ensued. Slick satin just refuses to be sewn, especially when you are trying to meaningfully join it to any type of napped fabric. Sheer hell. Puckering. I ended up using tissue paper between the layers, which helped some, but not enough. I had to hand baste the batting to the velvet to do the quilting, which took forever and isn’t totally even. The piping was a pain, and in retrospect I should have used a finer weight cording. To top it off, I forgot to cut the back pleat into the lining, which I didn’t discover until I handed the jacket to my Husband to try on. I had to buy more fabric to recut it. Despite the hellacious and neverending trouble this pattern gave me, I still think it turned out pretty good. My Husband likes to strut around the house with a martini while wearing it, so mission accomplished. The moral of the story is that choice of fabric and finish details can make a BIG difference in your work load!

 

 

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