I'm steaming through my autumn to-sew list (which admittedly only had three items on it) and am now fully engulfed in the delights of jacket fitting...
As this is my first time making a jacket, I thought I'd better break my bad, dirty habit of winging it with patterns and make a practice muslin first. I'm using a pattern from the Built By Wendy Coats and Jackets book. Even though there are 23 different variants of coats and jackets to choose from, in typical annoying fashion the one I have in my head isn't there, so I'll be mixing the jacket and collar of two different patterns. There might not be a pattern for my imaginary jacket in the book, but I did find a drawing:
Very plain and uncluttered, with princess seams and a classic collar. Nice.
So, going by the size chart, I cut out a medium jacket and sewed it together. One word of warning for anybody interested in trying out this book: the patterns run small. I'm a UK size 12 top, sometimes even a 10 depending on the style, and I'm short (5' 2"). So any tall or busty sewists (or even tall AND busty sewists for that matter) beware of the chest width and length of these patterns. Admittedly there are no seam allowances on the hem, but the shortness of this first effort does make me look like some hideous mother of the bride
WAY too short, and not in a cool, Sammy Davis Jnr kind of short…
No, more like this pair….
As well as being too short, it also didn't fit across the bust. There will be a button extension added but it was still too tight. And as for the back.....
Imagine stretching for something on a shelf in a shop? Not a pretty sight.
Much as it killed me to do so, I decided a redraft was called for. and heart breakingly, a second muslin. I made the following changes:
- Added five inches to the length.
- Measured the distance it gaped apart at the bust, divided it by four and added it to the side seams as advised in the book.
- The second attempt was much better but the shoulders seemed large, so I made a small vertical tuck right down the back and that seemed to do the trick.
These muslins are shockingly unflattering, but I've managed to see past the cream calico and imagine it in a lovely grey wool with a teal satin lining. So far so good. The next steps for me now are to cut out the final pattern pieces, draft the facings and put scissors to cloth (gulp). I'm liking the look of it so far though. x