I finished it before the election despite a catalogue of silly mistakes! Excuse the expression on my face in the picture – it was extremely cold on Sunday evening and I’m trying not to shiver.
I discovered on bank holiday Monday afternoon that my zip was at least an inch too short, and had to dash to the shops to get a longer one. Luckily for me the one local haberdashery shop open had a zip the right length. After that I managed to sew the collar on upside down and join the front shoulder straps together. I definitely need to get a sharper seam ripper.
Apart from the silly mistakes I’m pretty happy with this. The collar worked really well. The fit isn’t perfect, but that’s my own fault for being too lazy to baste and try on as I went. I adjusted the pattern as I traced it but that was about it as far as fitting went. It wasn’t quite big enough on the hips, which was entirely my own fault for tracing a 10 instead of grading out to a 12. (I knew as I was tracing it that this wasn’t going to be big enough…why on earth didn’t I trace the 12?) There’s also something not quite right at the back waist
I think most of those wrinkles are coming from it being a little tight on the hips and loose on the waist. The amount of ease in the waist of this pattern is surprisingly large – something like 4 inches – and there is no ease at all at the hips. If I make it again I’ll adjust that.
The doubleknit fabric I used turned out to be a real pain in the neck to sew. A ballpoint needle wouldn’t penetrate it so I sewed with a universal size 90. I couldn’t do a twin needle hem because my twin needle is a ball point, so I had to resort to one of my machine’s stretch hem stitches. This turned out better than I expected so I might use that again.
The exposed zip was tricky with such thick fabric. There’s a bit of a lump where I had to turn back the end of the slot for the zip.
The fact that the zip is a bit too long for the slot makes this worse because the end of the zip is sitting under that fabric lump. The only suitable zips I could find were open ended so I got a sightly longer zip than required and let the opening end drop below the end of the slot. The end of the zip is quite scratchy so I made it a little sock out of a scrap of my fabric so it doesn’t catch my skin. The sock also stops it from opening. Maybe there’s a better way to do this though? Perhaps removing the zipper teeth at the required length and sewing the zipper tape together below that, then I wouldn’t end up with the teeth bulking it out.
I don’t have any orange shoes to go with it but the blue ones work I think. Now I just need the temperature to rise enough to be able to wear it without my skin turning the same colour as the shoes.