Two firsts on this one: sewing my first coat, and first time sewing with plaid. I love a hobby that always has some small new challenge to try. And when you meet the challenge, you get to wear a stylish new coat! Who doesn’t love that?
I wasn’t sure this coat was meant to be, until this post from McCalls popped into my inbox a few days ago:
I had been mulling over B6244 (pictured at left above) for the last few weeks but was unconvinced the roomy cut was for me. But, when you get an unsolicited message saying “YOU NEED TO SEW THIS NOW,” and they’re talking about the thing you’ve been considering doing, that’s the universe telling you to get on it. It was all the excuse I needed. Bonus motivator: only 3 pattern pieces to cut!
I made a couple of intentional modifications and one accidental/unfortunate one. Let’s get the big mistake out of the way. I was supposed to have turned the narrow hem to the *right* side of the fronts & collar, not to the wrong side as you’d normally do. Counter-intuitive, no? But makes sense, since the shawl collar drapes open to reveal the wrong side of the fabric and my little narrow hem becomes very noticeable right there on the front lapels. Oh well, I realized too late and I’m not sure yet whether I’m willing to spend 3 days unpicking that endless hem and redoing it.
Intentional modifications included:
- shortening the length by 4.5 inches. This works much better on my 5’4″ frame.
- chopping off a few inches from the vertical edges of the front pieces. I cut away about 4 inches along the front edges and graded out to 6 inches near the bottom. This made the cascading collar a little shorter and more proportional to the overall shortened length.
- adding side-seam pockets (because what on earth is the point of a coat without pockets, amirite?)
- adding a snap near the side seam and at the front shoulder, which allows me to wear the coat with the front closed over:
I think I like this look better; it’s a little more mod and gives a funnel-neck look. More practical in the cold weather, too.
I plan to convert the snaps to buttons for more stability. Turns out sewing on snaps is a good way to test-place buttons without the commitment of cutting a buttonhole.
Lucky for me, and other intermediate-level sewists, no-nonsense coats with simple styling and clean lines seem to be all the rage now. That means sewing a stylish coat is well within our skill level. Woohoo! And with just 3 pattern pieces to cut out for this design, it was very easy to get the plaid-matching to work out.
I’m so enamoured with this black and white plaid, and I have a fair bit left over, that I’m thinking of sewing Burda’s ‘Illusion Jacket’ with contrasting black sleeves:
…and at some point I have GOT to get me some wool fleece and sew one of these:
The irony is that none of these coats is all that suitable for Canadian winter (or barely Fall, for that matter). I love these lightweight, casual coats but there’s only a window of about 2 or 3 weeks in Fall or Spring to wear them. Sigh.
But the good news is that my office is FREEZING year ’round…so this just might get a lot of wear indoors!