It seemed like a good idea at the time, or, an assortment of idiosyncratic construction decisions


Catchstitched interlining

I guess I really am a sucker for hand-sewing. If only because I catch much less flack from the family if I’m hand-sewing in the living-room with the rest of them all evening, instead of lurking in the kitchen with my sewing machine.


Warning: what follows is not a description of how one SHOULD make a coat. I am not particularly convinced that all (any) of the construction details I am about to report actually improve the resulting coat in any way, and several of them may have serious unforeseen drawbacks. I accept this. 😉

Friday I got the rest of the coat—lining and interlining—cut out. Hooray! I could not find any more of my space suit interlining at the fabric store, so I had to settle for some (much cheaper) non-foil-backed stuff. I had just enough left from making my coat to cut the two back pieces from the foil-backed stuff, which I figure should be fine since the fronts are double-breasted anyway.

I trimmed the seam-allowances from the interlining. Then, for reasons I am no longer totally clear on, I decided


that rather than floating free between shell and lining, it should be sandwiched between shell and interlining. I promptly proceeded to catchstitch the back pieces in place, so they wouldn’t shift despite not being caught in the seams.

Then I said “bugger that,” and skipped the catch-stitching step for the front and side-front pieces. My occasional inability to keep the interlining out of the seams should hold them in place, not like they have anywhere to go.

This fabric is a dream to sew with. It’s squishy, easy to ease, and you can catch stitches on the underside beautifully without worry of them showing on the right side of the fabric. Mmm. I also love my flannel underlining.

1cm seam-allowances may be awesome on jeans, but they’re tricky on a coat. Allowing for turn of cloth, once you go to press the seam open, there’s very little allowance at all. I proceeded to stitch all the seam-allowances open after pressing (hence the marathon of hand-stitching and why my fingers are still sore.)


Tyo refused to brush her hair for the photos, hence her headless state. Also she was making faces.

OMG, is that a coat?

She has POCKETS!

Well, almost.

Yay, smooth back!

For interest’s sake, I re-took Tyo’s measurements (rather than relying on my last set from oh, back in the summer) and compared them to the m-sewing sizing charts. The results may highlight some of the fitting issues we had.

Hips: 81 cm. Her hips are a size 12.

Waist: 58. Her waist is a size 8.

Bust: 63 cm. Her chest is, ah, a size 6.

The coat I made is about a size 11, for measurements bust: 73cm, waist: 63cm, hip: 79cm.  I still think the coat is cut a bit snug for my liking (I added significantly more than 2cm to the ease in the hips), but the disproportion between shoulders and hips is all Tyo.  If Sewaholic Patterns ever puts out a children’s line, Tyo can be their first customer.

Next: assemble sleeves, sew lining, decide whether to add another layer of interlining (this time where the interlining *actually* belongs) as the non-foil stuff is kinda thin, and try to avoid doing any more hand-stitching until at least tonight.

PS. This post would’ve been up Saturday morning, but my camera cable evaporated sometime Friday evening. Despite a thorough house-clean Saturday (my Dad was in town and came to dinner), it has not resurfaced. However, fortunately for me, the card reader decided to read the camera memory stick today—Sony uses an odd format and 90% of the time the computer doesn’t recognize it… but once in a while it does. So, you get a post! Yay for random computer cooperation!



Filed under Sewing

7 responses to “It seemed like a good idea at the time, or, an assortment of idiosyncratic construction decisions

  1. I am so proud of you! What a great job. I am a fan of hand stitching because I have better control, however, sore finger are the secondary benefit! This will be so cute on her. Can’t wait to see the finished product.

  2. This is looking awesome on your little cutie! My child won’t brush her hair either and she’s almost 11. Yesterday took her to hairdresser for trim and colour (yes, she likes to colour her hair and I don’t mind) under the proviso that she has to brush from now on. We’ll see how long that lasts 🙂

    Gertie did a post during the sew along about how to work with underlining. I didn’t use it in my coat so I don’t remember anything about it, but it might be useful to check out?

    • I thought she did too, but then I couldn’t find it… obviously I need to look harder. I’ve underlined before, though… it was more the interlining that was messing with my little brain (and I’ve interlined before, too…)

      Tyo’s hair was halfway down her back until last fall, when it abruptly became shoulder length due to the Eternal Hair-Brush wars. She’s been a BIT better about looking after it since then… just not at 8:00 AM on a Saturday morning… 🙂

  3. Looking good! She’s one lucky girl!

  4. Wow, that’s looking fabulous–and your daughter is a fine model. My kids consider almost any photo of them posted on my blog to be some sort of child exploitation– so I have to do it on the sly. Allowing me to do a coat fitting would probably qualify as abuse.

  5. Sewista Fashionista

    Your coat shell looks so beautiful! After all of your hard work it paid off. It’s coming along so well.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s