Hi Guys! I was recently looking back at the list of sewing goals I set for myself at the beginning of the year and I found that I’ve accomplished none of them. I am not super stressed out about that since sewing is my fun hobby, but it did spur me on to make the new rain jacket I’ve been dreaming about for quite a while.
This is me in my old jacket. I’ve been wearing the same jacket for the past 20 years. I honestly can’t believe that it’s been so long. I got this jacket when I worked at the Gap at Fox Valley Mall back in 1995 or 1996. I loved this jacket but it’s way too big on me. I am basically the same size as when I bought it so I have no idea why I bought it so big, other than it was the 90s and I was wearing everything oversized.
I wanted to make something pretty similar to my Gap jacket and I picked the Papercut Patterns Waver jacket. I bought the pattern a while ago but had a hard time settling on fabric. I really wanted something black and water resistant. Allie from Indiesew read my mind when she added this upcycled broadcloth into her fabric shop. (The fabric used to be plastic water bottles!) It turned out to be exactly what I wanted for my jacket. I decided on the 1/2″ black and white checkers fabric from Cotton + Steel for my lining and I used black bemberg rayon to line the sleeves.
The construction of this jacket went very smoothly. I completely love sewing raglan sleeves because they are very easy to construct and the fit is really forgiving. I knew I wanted a drawstring for the hood, which is not part of the original pattern. I decided to make a small facing using my exterior fabric for the interior of the hood so that the gingham was set back a little bit and the facing could be my drawstring casing. (The facing ended up being a little bit more narrow than I intended because I forgot to account for one of the seam allowances when I was deciding how wide to make it. Oops!) I also added a flap for the top of the pockets in an effort to keep my stuff from falling out when my jacket ends up in a heap in the back of the van or wadded into a tote bag.
Are any of you following along with Carolyn over at Allspice Abounds as she makes her amazing Robson trench coat? I happened to read one of her posts when I was in the middle of constructing my jacket and she mentioned adding piping to the seam that attaches the lining to the inner facing. I knew I had to do the same thing so I made some flat piping from some hot pink quilting cotton that was in my stash. I also made a hanging loop from the same fabric. I absolutely adore the pop of pink on the inside of my jacket! Thanks for the great idea, Carolyn!
I cut a size small graded to a medium for the jacket. (My bust is 36″ and my hips are 42″ish.) I paid close attention to the finished measurements since I didn’t make a muslin for the jacket. The finished measurements for the hips weren’t listed but I measured the flat pattern and felt like the medium should be roomy enough. I am really happy with the fit of the jacket except for the sleeve length. I prefer my sleeves to be pretty long– the sleeves on most of my jackets hit pretty close to my knuckles and the sleeves on this jacket are much closer to my wrists.
I was somewhat devastated when I tried on my jacket after attaching the lining (I used the tutorial from Grainline to bag the lining since it required no hand sewing.) The sleeves were only a hair longer than wrist length and I knew I couldn’t live with it. I stewed about it for a while and decided to try a shallower seam allowance where the sleeve and sleeve lining met. That worked OK but I really wanted to add as much length as I could. I ended up cutting a strip of the gingham fabric and using it as a connector piece between the exterior sleeve and the sleeve lining to give myself an extra inch of sleeve length. This worked well since there was a good amount of the exterior fabric that was turned to the inside of the sleeve for the hem allowance. Now more of that is actual sleeve instead of hem allowance, but somehow I didn’t end up gaining as much length as I should have. I don’t know what happened but my sleeves are only about 1/2″ longer than they were initially. I know this because I got a little aggressive with the heat on my iron and made a perma-crease on part of my original sleeve hem. It’s a little bit annoying but it’s better to have a perma-crease and slightly longer sleeves, I suppose. If I make this jacket again I will lengthen the sleeves an inch and a half.
The good news about repeatedly having to unpick the seam where the lining and the sleeve hem meets is that I can almost wrap my head around that step of bagging a lining now. That seam was always super confusing to me but after sewing it at least 8 times in the process of making this jacket I feel like a pro. Time to make another lined jacket!
Other than wishing the sleeves were still a little longer I really love my new jacket. The fit is much better than my old one and it’s a great weight for early Fall temperatures. We are having a pretty warm November and I’ve gotten to wear this jacket quite a bit since I finished it. I stole the drawstrings, cord locks, and cord cap thingies (technical term) from my Gap jacket. I also used some silver grommets instead of button holes for where the drawstrings exit the jacket. I love how the hardware makes the jacket look more professional!
It feels good to have at least one thing off of my list of sewing goals for the year! I am hoping to get another pair of jeans made this year and then I’ll probably give up on the rest of my list. Did any of you make any sewing goals this year? How are you doing on your lists?