Bewildering wrinkles

Well I took the plunge. Armed with everyone’s good advice from my last post I put on some music and sewed my coat muslin up, a few seams at a time. Doing it over a few sessions wasn’t too bad. Thanks for all the encouragement and advice, it really helped!

It’s come out pretty well! The most important thing is that I can move my arms, despite having removed all the ease from the sleeve cap. I seem to have forgotten to take any pictures of that. In passing, isn’t it great not to have to keep getting undressed to try a garment on? I did wonder if I should be putting on more layers to simulate a really cold day! However I am wearing several thin layers and a very bulky belt under the coat in these photos, which is my normal winter work wear. I guess if the coat goes over all that then things will be OK.

Coat muslin full length

I had a hard time deciding what, if anything, needed adjusting. Every time I move the wrinkles seem to move as well, and most of them don’t match up to anything at all in my fitting books. The most obvious problem is a wrinkle on the front princess seam. That one doesn’t come and go. I think this is due to excess length above the bust point.

Front princess seam with wrinkle

I took out a tiny amount – about 5mm – above the seam and things are somewhat improved. I think I need to take out a little width from the seam as well, but on the other hand I don’t want to overfit things. I measured the pattern and this style is unusually close-fitting for a coat.

It looks like it needs a full bust adjustment in this picture (taken after taking out the length) because of the way the horizontal seam is rising up and there’s a wrinkle pointing from the waist to the bust point, but I can’t see the problem from the front or in the other pictures I took. Also if I take a pinch of the fabric over the bust there’s actually lots of room there. This is why I find fitting so confusing!

Front princess seam with wrinkle

There’s a similar problem on the back, only more so.

Back view of muslin

But I think I need some of that extra fabric for mobility, because look what happens when I put my arms forward. The excess width vanishes and there’s just a bit of extra length.

Back view with arms forward

Three quarter back view

I’m just going to take out a little length at the back underarms as well as at the front, and stop there. I picked my muslin fabric because it has a similar (lack of) drape to my shell fabric, but the shell fabric is substantially thicker so I guess it won’t make up quite the same and there’s no point worrying too much at this stage. Wish me luck.

Autumn sewing

Summer’s definitely over in my part of the UK. The schools have gone back for the autumn term, the nights are drawing in rapidly, and I even needed to get my winter coat out one evening last week. I’m sorry the summer’s gone, but on the other hand I really prefer the autumn and winter seasons for all things fashion and sewing-related.

Look at these gorgeous coating fabric samples that came from Stone Fabrics last week. I wasn’t planning to make a coat, but now I’m wondering if I can carry off that chartreuse colour. I’d love to use the bubblegum pink, but I just dyed my hair bright red again.

Coating samples

I have several great coat patterns in my stash. Could I possibly find time to make two coats?

Does this look familiar?

Here’s my new coat, Vogue 1276 by Sandra Betzina.
Vogue 1276
Here’s the pattern envelope photo.

And this I found while browsing on Net-a-Porter. It’s from Rick Owens Lilies, one of my favourite lines.

While strikingly similar it’s not quite the same style. The Vogue has a much fuller skirt and lacks the extra-long sleeves. But it has all the features that appeal to me in the Rick Owens coat. Pure serendipity!

A new hope – coat muslin

My husband’s first reaction to my muslin of Vogue 1276 was to proclaim “You should not have come back, old man!”. I’m not entirely sure if it was Obi-wan Kenobi or Darth Vader he was reminded of. Personally I quite like it – and Jedi normally wear their robes ankle-length, not mid-calf.

I haven’t got a picture of the back where the hood is sitting straight. It has a tendency to lie in funny positions when worn down. I can also see I’m going to have to take out all the extra length I added to the bodice. The actual back waist length on this pattern is about two inches longer than what’s given on the size chart. They didn’t match up when I measured the tissue, but the difference was so big I assumed I was measuring the wrong thing and went by the size chart – which incidentally had a slightly different measurement in the version inside the envelope than the one on the back of it. This is the first time I’ve tried a “Today’s Fit” Vogue, but I have to say based on this I’m a “Yesterday’s Fit” girl!

I really like the effect when the hood is worn up, and the hood was the reason I chose the style in the first place.

I ordered this pattern before Christmas, having fallen in love with the envelope picture. When it arrived I started to have second thoughts. It needs a huge amount of fabric because the skirt is cut on the bias, and the instructions are disappointing. I was expecting something a cut above normal pattern instructions from this range. However based on the muslin I think I shall go on and make this up. I’ve got a piece dark grey boiled wool from Stone Fabrics that might just be large enough.

And by the way, I’m afraid I haven’t been leaving many blog comments this week. It’s not through lack of trying; I’m suddenly having real problems commenting on Blogger blogs. The word verification always comes back incorrect. I’ve even been to look on Blogger’s Known Issues page and there’s no help there. So I’m not ignoring anyone on purpose, just hoping this gets fixed soon.