Or other similarly foreboding music.
Last night I started, edging slowly, timidly, towards working on my hubby’s coat. This is the one I’ve been promising him, oh, at least since the spring. And he’s even whined about it, albeit intermittently.
In my defense, given the frustrations of my last project for him (WHICH HE DOESN”T WEAR!!!), I think a bit of heel-dragging on my part is understandable.
So, years and years ago, he bought a “trench coat*” from le chateau, the once-fabulous purveyor of all your goth gear needs.
Goth no longer being cool, apparently, they don’t sell that stuff anymore, but back in the day, man, that was the place to go.
The photo I just took has to be the single most unappealing I could have come up with—let me just say, it looks better on. And it was a staple of his leisure wardrobe for years. Sadly, aside from the stains which could probably be laundered out, at this point the fabric is full of snags, not to mention some melted holes from cigarette ash, and the whole thing is just not quite as smart-looking as it used to be. Which just isn’t acceptable.
Anyway, back in the spring I scored some great black coating at the thrift store, and my hubby pounced. He does this sometimes, gets a fabric stuck in his head. It HAD to be a replica of his coat. Regardless of the fact that this was a thick woolly coating, while the original was made of a thin, drapey suiting.
I wasn’t sure I would have enough (there were only 2m from the thrift-store find) so when Fabricland had a good sale, I picked up two more metres of black “Kashmir Jacketing” (which, as far as I can tell, has absolutely no cashmere in it, but anyway). I was pretty sure this was the same fabric as the thrift-store find.
I was wrong. I think the thrift-store find may actually be melton, the stuff Fabricland sells for $33/m and is unforgivably bad about marking down, at least until after all the good colours are gone.
Concerned that my blacks didn’t match, I went back and found a
nice cheap poly twill suiting, similar in weight to the original jacket. Cheering myself, I bought three metres. It would be perfect, a much better match to the original. I proudly showed it to my husband.
He was not amused. His heart was set on melton.
Argh. Anyway, I suspect I can make it work, although it’s possible I’ll end up cutting the facings and maybe side-body pieces out of the other fabric.
So, next requirement was, of course, a pattern. I considered trying to draft one (I’m masochistic that way, or at least like to pretend I am) but some noodling around the interwebs turned up this pattern. Which is actually a Lekala pattern, if you should for some reason want the custom sizing. But the M-Sewing site had multiple sizes for download.
Anyway, although you probably can’t see it due to my crappy photography, this pattern has all the right details, aside from length. I had even printed it out and taped it together months ago, back in July.
Last night, I went and began the rest of the pattern alterations. Sleeve—lengthened. Waist—narrowed. Vent moved from side-back seam to centre back seam. Now all I need to do is lengthen the crap out of the pieces, and I’ll be ready for the muslin.
And then I need to start re-reading Sherry’s RTW Coat Sewalong. Cuz I am not going all-out couture for this thing.
Having looked at the construction of the original, though, I have to say I’m not impressed. “Lightly tailored” does not even begin to describe it. I’ve made dresses with more structure than this thing. Ok, I haven’t, but someone out there has. Light, thin shoulder pads and a bit of interfacing on the front facing and collar. That’s IT.
There is one issue with the original that worries me a tad—the facing tends to roll out. Hubs has expressed a STRONG DESIRE that the new version not do this. I will definitely read over Sherry’s tips on drafting the front facing, but if any of you have any thoughts on what causes this problem I’d love to hear them. (Is it just natural? it kind of “rolls” out where a lapel would, except of course this jacket doesn’t have a rolled lapel. Hmm.)
I’m thinking maybe I should bust out a blazer pattern for myself while I’m at it… it’s not as if I don’t have at least five pieces of fabric that want to become blazers (and at least as many patterns in the running). But we’ll maybe leave that for a future post…
*My husband often has a bit of his own language; I blame it on the ADHD that makes sure he never pays too much attention to anything, least of all words. For years he would de-thaw food for supper. And as far as he’s concerned any long black coat is a trench coat. I have been arguing that this particular garment, completely lacking in the authentic trench-coat details (gun-flap, epaulettes, belt), is more of a frock-coat, but not with any kind of measurable success. He also considers the little coats I made my nieces trench-coats as well.