A Coat for Tyo—Muslin #2

On Tuesday when I tried to print out the pattern in a larger size (140 instead of 134 height), my printer was out of ink.

Thursday night, despite me doing ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to fix this, it was willing to print.

Muslin #2 Front

So I pieced together the pattern (again) and compared it to the smaller version. The length of the sleeves on the larger pattern was just slightly longer than the length of the sleeves on the smaller after I had lengthened them to fit. Perfect. The width of the back piece was almost the same as the width of my alterations to the back piece. Good so far.

Muslin #2---Side

The shoulder was a whole cm longer. Ah, well.

So, here it is. Much better all around, except for those pesky shoulders.

It’s still catching the slightest bit on her bottom, so I think I will still do a small swayback adjustment. I’m thinking I’ll add a rear vent, too, just to make it a bit more practical for an active child. I’m also going to add 1 cm  to the undersleeve (and maybe flatten the sleeve-cap a tiny bit to compensate?) just to get a bit more ease there. The width they are now would be fine for a jacket, might be still a bit snug over sweaters, once all the layers are in place.

What do you think of those shoulders? If it were just for her alone, I would definitely alter them, but this coat will probably be handed down eventually to Syo, who is built much more like me, i.e. with broad shoulders and a narrow, compact bottom. And they are designed for a shoulder pad, too, although I wouldn’t want a large one. Anyone have a favourite narrow-shoulder adjustment tutorial out there?

Muslin #2---Rear view

On the fabric front, I washed the red fabric. It shrank. No big surprises there. I will wash the black, too. The downside of this fabric is a peculiar strong, plasticky odour (possibly the reason it was on sale). The store assured me several times that this will go away when the fabric is dry-cleaned. I hate dry-cleaning, so I just washed and dried it. I figured it couldn’t hurt a semi-felted fabric too much. Aside from the shrinking, it seems fine. The smell, though fainter, is still there. After several days of lying spread out in the basement, it seems hardly noticeable… I’ve now folded it up and we’ll see if the smell comes back. If I do need to dry-clean it to get rid of the smell, well, that’ll be another thing to wait on money for :P.

Syo's purse

In other news, Syo cut out and sewed a little purse for herself tonight. I did nothing but tie off a few knots (she even threaded the needle herself.) Meanwhile, Tyo is plotting making cloth dolls for her cousins. The basement is currently strewn with an assortment of doll-pattern-pieces. Also, I’d just like to point out that those purple striped socks Tyo is wearing, are mine. *grumblegrumblegrump* She’s starting to steal my shirts, too. The end is nigh, people, the end is nigh.



Filed under Sewing

16 responses to “A Coat for Tyo—Muslin #2

  1. Joy

    The coat looks nice even in muslin form! I’m amazed you have the gumption to make muslins for a kid’s coat. I think I wouldn’t alter the shoulders for the reason you mentioned, plus it’s a coat and close fit isn’t so necessary. Ease of movement over clothes is more important. I’ve pondered the alterations for clothes meant to be passed down, too. I’ve altered a few pant seats for my older dd (who’s destined to be a swaybacked pear), but wonder if they’ll be too baggy on my middle dd, who is a mini version of me, strong will and all ): And maybe chubby baby sister will be a different shape altogether…

    • Last time I made coats for my kids I didn’t muslin, but that was with Big 4 patterns. This one was such a complete unknown, I wanted to be sure of the fit (and the drafting quality, for that matter). I’m glad I did… but once you’re in muslin territory the temptation to tweak is, ah, strong. 🙂

  2. Your daughter is so sweet in those photos – my kid would not happily agree to fitting and photos 🙂

    • Well, I wouldn’t say she’s overly *happy* about taking them … but she deals ;). It is really nice to have kids old enough to interact with rationally… at least intermittently.

  3. Corinne

    This one looks better all around. I agree, back vent is still probably a good idea. Don’t want the poor child walking like a pigeon! Because you want a looser fit on the coat over the beautiful bottom I would just taper in 1/2 on the front and back side seams (total of 1 inch) Before messing around with the shoulder too much, try a small shoulder pad. Here is a little tute on narrow shoulder adjustment that might help.


    Also remember that your fashion fabric weight will be different than this muslin. Do you have a pressing ham? Steaming that shoulder seam over the ham, don’t touch it, let it dry, then see how it fits. (If you do not have a pressing ham I very tightly rolled bath towel will help)After you narrow the shoulder You may have to just play around with the cap a bit by adding or subtracting a 1/2 inch or so (slash pattern, add a piece or pinch up 1/4 inch that would = 1/2 inch)) This would add a little fullness to the cap, permit a little more ease. Good luck1

    • Thanks for the suggestions, and the link! It’s not quite as terrifying an alteration as I had been fearing…

      I do have a ham, and I will give a steam and a shoulder-pad a try before I make a final decision. 🙂

  4. Corinne

    clarification on side seam adjustment, I would add 1/2 inch to each front and back side seam, that would be an inch for each side, a total of two inches. Wearing ease for this type of garment. This part of the coat would .look better hanging straight from the underarm seam. Then if it looks too bulky in the back do the sway back adjustment.

  5. Sewista Fashionista

    This one does look better than your first muslin. I don’t know how you would alter the shoulders for a narrow-shouldered older child and also have a perfect fit for the broad-shouldered younger one. A narrow-shouldered person is comfortable in a broad shoulder, but a broad-shouldered person is not comfortable with too narrow shoulders. You know the left shoulder shows more wrinkling than the right, and in the photo of your daughter from the back the center back seam leans towards the left side. Is the shoulder issue not so much narrow vs. broad, but does she have a slight asymmetry? I have one shoulder a bit different from the other myself. This muslin looks very good and I’m sure it will be lovely done up in the fashion fabric.

  6. Sunlight does wonders for removing wierd odors. On a sunny day you could try hanging the fabic on a fence (bushes, car, whatever!) as long as it’s in the direct sunlight, it might help. And one day in the sun shouldn’t fade it out (maybe!!)

    • Oh, that’s a good idea! Hmm, maybe I can put it out on the deck this afternoon…

      • Sunlight and fresh air work wonders. If you are concerned about fading, expose the wrong side to the sun. If there isn’t an obvious wrong side, mark one side as “wrong” and then cut it out that way.

        But really, I doubt one day in the sun will make any noticeable difference. I regularly dry my clothes on a clothesline and I always turn them wrong side out because after six months of weekly washing and drying, you will start to notice some fading.

  7. Here’s another vote for “don’t bother with alterations”.

    What’s she wearing under the muslin? You could have her try it on over a T-shirt plus bulky sweater and see where you’re at. A sweater would take up some of the ease created by the narrow shoulders too.

  8. lisa

    you have both pattern sizes already printed out,right? Perhaps just use the smaller pattern for the very top, and then grade out to the larger pattern.

  9. Narrow shoulder adjustment is pretty straight-forward (said Narrow Should Girl), although if you’re planning on handing it down, you might consider leaving it and adding a removable shoulder pad (they’re easy enough to make and cover with matching fabric). Then you can take them out if Broad Shoulder Girl needs the space.

    This looks lots better all around, I’m glad you decided to try the other size.

  10. Shoulder pads sound like a good plan to me if the next contender has broad shoulders.

    Ann Rowley at Stitcher’s Guild posted these photos of her narrow shoulder alteration


    They seem a very popular post from the comments at Stitcher’s Guild.

  11. LinB

    OdoBan added to wash cycle will even negate the smell of cat pee. Don’t ask me how I know, but trust me, it works.

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