A springy little coat

Spring coat front

So I spent some time last night doodling. There was a lot of erasing, and a lot of other little doodles that fell by the wayside as this design emerged. But I think I’m happy with the details—I knew I wanted the empire waist and the princess seams and a thigh-length, but the rest was up in the air. I googled “empire waist coat” and looked through far too many inspiration options before I settled on the inverted box-pleats , high standing collar, and pleated cuffs.

I think I like the idea of the pleat at the upper CB, giving a bit more freedom of movement in what I want to be a fairly fitted garment. This is a spring coat—it won’t (in theory) need to accomodate the bulky sweaters of my winter coats.

So, all that remains is that piddly little problem of a pattern.


Coat back

So I have two or three options, all of which promise to stretch my embryonic pattern-making skills to their limits. I have the Lady Grey pattern, which has the right seaming but the wrong kind of sleeve and the giant lapels; I have my Butterick winter coat pattern, which has the right sleeves (sorta) but shoulder rather than arm princess seams. Or, third option (and maybe the one I will go with), the princess-seam fitted jacket pattern from Built by Wendy coats and jackets. This has the right seams and the right sleeve, but I haven’t tried it before. Still, I have the book, I should use it, right?

Spring-coat, side

I’m assuming drafting an A-line skirt with a few pleats won’t be too terrible. Drafting the collar may be a bit more hit-and-miss, but should be good practice, right? πŸ˜‰ …

The cuffs are stolen from (or at least inspired by) one of the variations on this pattern that my daughter didn’t choose for her version, though I think I will go with a box-pleat to match the rest of the coat.

I was debating a double-breasted front because, well, I love them, but this will be a spring coat and so often worn open, so I figured a single-breasted front would be better.

I’ve had this fabric probably since sometime last spring; it’s another thrift store mystery, a burlap-weave, quite crisp and rather scratchy. There’s also four or five metres of it, so if I really feel the need I can probably make a full muslin out of the fashion fabric (of course, if I don’t need to, I can make matching separates—it would make a fun skirt, or maybe even a shift-dress or something…

I took advantage of the weekend’s 50% off sale to pick up some Kasha lining for the coat—maybe a bit of overkill for the “spring” weight I’m going for, but I hate the thought of sewing with the regular linings. I still have to decide on underlining or not—I have a feeling it won’t be part of Sherry’s RTW techniques, but my fashion fabric, while heavy, is rather sheer due to its coarse weave. Well, I’m getting ahead of myself—first I need to pattern the dang thing.

I can do that in two weeks, right?

Also, whatever comes, don’t let me forget to add pockets!

Fabric! Right: lining; left: shell

In Me-Made March news,

the weather is gorgeous and I wore my Lady Grey! I was soo close to wearing a circle skirt out, but I just couldn’t commit to it at 6 in the morning (which felt like 5 since the time just changed… I could write a whole blog about how much I hate daylight savings time…)

Me-Made March, day 14

Czarina Coat (AKA Lady Grey)
JJ blouse
Long-sleeve T
Skinny jeans



Filed under Sewing

18 responses to “A springy little coat

  1. I know I’ve seen a coat almost like your inspiration drawings (good sketching, by the way) in the Sew Serendipity book? I’ll go downstairs and look it up now, and if I find what I think I’ll find I’ll email you the pics.

    • Yes, that one is definitely among my inspiration photos… I actually went and looked at the book, considering buying it. But that version has darts, not princess seams, and a gathered bottom section. And I couldn’t really justify spending over $30 on a book I only want one pattern out of… πŸ˜‰

  2. CGCouture

    I know exactly how you feel about Daylight Savings time….GRRRRRR! I hate it! I think your jacket idea will be pretty awesome, but I’m curious about the front opening. Will there be a zipper in the front underneath the button area?

  3. Last year I made a wool jacket with very similar lines to your drawing (your drawing looks better) anyway, seems to be an OOP Simplicity 2812 pattern
    but the seaming is almost identical. and you could easily add the box pleats.
    I gotta get my act together and pick something out for the Tailoring sew-a-long.

    • I love the collar on that coat! I’m pretty sure I’d have to move the waist-seam on that coat up a couple of inches anyway, though… shortwaisted little me /sigh…

  4. He he, I better get my act together and pick something for the tailoring sewalong too!
    The coat (and drawing) looks cute – you can draft it!

  5. you are a coat making fiend! can’t wait to see it.

  6. I’m impressed with your sketching!:) I’d love to see how it turns out! The design is flattering!

  7. Sue

    I like your coat design. It will look super.

  8. i love love love what you have created! What completely got me are the wrists! I love they idea of a box pleat there (and for the body of the coat as well).

    What book do you use? I would like to find a good textbook about drafting. The kind of book you get when you study something at university…

    Oh, and, by the way, don’t forget the pockets!

    • I have no book of my own, although “modern pattern design” on the vintage sewing website is pretty nifty (an old pattern making text from 1942). Someday I’ll get some proper training… For now I am just winging it! πŸ˜‰

  9. but, you didn’t make your boots for MMM day 14?


  10. Your drawings are amazing, and I love your ideas for this coat! (And I, also, could write a whole post about DST. Ugh.)

  11. love the fabric lining and the drawing….good luck, i can’t wait to see how it turns out πŸ™‚

  12. Pingback: Measuring Patterns | Tanit-Isis Sews

  13. Pingback: A cute model… | Tanit-Isis Sews

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