Thursday, 15 August 2013

My broken jacket


I finally finished my jacket...although it took me over a week to get around to hemming the sleeves, creating the buttonholes and putting in the jetted flap pockets.


It hadn't really occurred to me that making the jacket from a pinstripe would create such a masculine look, but actually it feels an unexpectedly k.d lang style of garment...without the benefit of having her fantastic voice when I put the jacket on. The original plain navy jacket that I based this one on doesn't have that feel at all and I think I prefer it that way - I'm not sure I'm tall or angular enough to carry off this look. Which is a good way to feel, because I've had 'an incident' with this jacket.


If I look like I'm clutching my side in pain in the photo above, I sort of am. It's a multi-purpose clutch and one that I'd be forced to do at all times if I ever wore this jacket out of the house. It covers both the problem and the physical pain of realising I'm too silly to multi-task. Unfortunately while I was making the welted flap pockets, I was listening to something very absorbing on the radio and so when I was cutting the final slash to open the welted pocket...I just kept cutting...waaaaayyyy beyond the point at which I should have stopped cutting. While one pocket looks like this:


 The other looks like this:


One would normally set in pockets like this before even beginning to sew the front panels to the back and if I'd done it this way, I would simply have been able to cut a new front panel. My reason for not doing so was that as the pattern was self-drafted I didn't want to invest the time in doing the pockets if I wasn't happy with the fit (frustratingly, the fit is perfect). So they were the very last thing that I did...after binding all the facings, creating the buttonholes, sewing the buttons on and doing a lot of other ultimately pointless but time-consuming things.


If it was a quilt I'd stick a patch over the hole and accept that it was part of its charm, but I lack the hippy spirit required to do this with clothing. It would feel tantamount to going out wearing an eye-patch and pretending to be a pirate. I would feel compelled to point it out to people (like the girl who recently made a gorgeous skirt where the pattern placement inadvertently created an alarming fauxgina...you know who you are! I don't think I ever would have noticed it, but as one commenter on her Instagram feed said - you can't unsee a fauxgina once it's been pointed out to you!). Equally, you can't unsee a strange patch of fabric intended to mask a gaping hole once you've been alerted to it.


So it would seem that this has not been a good week for dressmaking. But I feel undeterred. My husband said, smirking, (smirking very dangerously, when one considers that he did so in the face of a woman with several days of ruined work wrapped around her body!) that he thought a winter version without a hole in it would be great. I'm most excited about this. There will be no holes, no faux-businessman stripes and I will not listen to the radio while I make it (actually that's not true. Listening to Radio 4 while sewing is one of life's greatest pleasures, so I will foolishly risk it again). Does anyone know of a tutorial for inserting a collar just like the one above? I worked it out on my own, but had an hour of turning my brain inside-out to get there. I'm feeling worried about whether I can remember what on earth I did for next time.

Florence x

20 comments:

  1. I have had all sorts of mishaps whilst listening to the radio, my mind elsewhere. It is a wonderful jacket- quite the triumph, could you not stitch a 'badge' on it, Cath Kidston style, a retro cloth badge for a holiday destination or girl guides would fit with the style. Some male sewing blogs- Male pattern baldness, might be the place for collar tutorials

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  2. It almost made me laugh when I heard that you kept cutting because of listening to the radio! I like to sew in silence so that I can talk to myself or sing... in fact it just occurred to me it might be quite funny to watch me sew! I like the buttons on the they go nicely!

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  3. Oh What a bugger, i'd probably wear it just the same. But you're right about pointing it out to all and sundry , i'm the worst at that.
    I think Jane did a tuttorial for a nothced collar here, http://handmadejane.blogspot.com/2013/08/tutorial-attaching-collar-and-facings.html would that help?

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    1. That's such a helpful link - thank you so, so much for posting it!

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  4. I think it looks great and can hardly see the mistake, and am still giggling childishly from the use of fauxgina, please send me the link so I can giggle further at the photo :)

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  5. Such a shame after making such a great jacket. Can't wait to see what your next version looks like. And Mr Teacakes really does like to sail close to the wind, doesn't he?!

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  6. I love that you made your own pattern! Two possible solutions to make it look like a design feature: could you make a longer flap to hide the problem or how about a label (or something that looks like a label) tucked into the gap - I'm thinking of the kind of label that is attached at one edge, or folded over.
    Sally

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  7. Argh! Like Anonymous above, I'm wondering if you couldn't put on a longer pocket flap (and then make the other side match)... Because the jacket is otherwise so nice and not at all KD Lang! I love it with the stripy t-shirt, double stripes are one of my favourite things ever. If it feels too masculine to you (doesn't look it to me, you're so petite and neat), maybe add a floral scarf?? Or different colour buttons? I know Liesl's latest post on the Oliver + S blog is about her favourite podcasts for sewing to - but I definitely can't listen and sew at the same time. x

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  8. I love the look of your jacket & you're giving me inspiration to try making myself one. So sorry to hear of the cutting mishap though! I was wondering if you could sew it up with small hand stitches and possibly a wider flap (with one to match) as suggested above.

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  9. I agree about a badge... or maybe a corsage? Not sure what you'd call it though? A pocksage? Lovely jacket, it must be mended and worn with pride :)

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  10. How extremely frustrating! I remember when I was making a dress for a friend, I was trimming down the join of the bodice to the skirt, and I somehow inadvertently caught up the middle of the silk chiffon skirt part in the scissors as I was (somewhat merrily) chopping down the waist seam width, which created an inch-long sliver hole in the middle front of the skirt area. Aghast is not the word. I think I simply put down the dress,in shock, made a cup of tea with a lot of sugar in it, ate a biscuit, made another cup of tea, and watched some nonsense on TV for a good hour before I could bear to return to the sewing desk and survey the damage.
    In the end I could (just about) salvage it but this involved creating some gored panels which may not have been the original design :)
    In summary: I feel your pain! Sarah

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    1. Oh goodness...that sounds horrific - it's so much worse when you're making it for someone else. x

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  11. Carry your bag over that pocket and no one will be the wiser. ;-)
    I do think you carry the pinstripes very nicely. And listening to Radio 4 (or the Archers omnibus download) is the only way to sew in my book!

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  12. Oh, before you throw it away, because it is SO cute, I think I can help. From how the cut looks (as long as it's just a cut and nothing has been cut OFF you can piece the pieces together from the front and use a fusible interfacing "patch" on the back. I also like Lori's suggestion of hand sewing it together before applying the interfacing "patch". I've done it before and with a fabric like that (it looks a bit like a knit and has wispy fibers coming off it) it should blend/knit itself back together visually pretty well. Oh, and once it's fixed DON'T point it out. It will be fine. ;)

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  13. it's gorgeous!! and it suits you.... please don't throw it... maybe it can be fixed?

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  14. Thank you for sharing with us that even amazing sewers who can make their own patterns, also sometimes make sewing mishaps. It gives us mere mortals hope!!
    I love it, it's amazing, I hope you solve your problem pocket.

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  15. I'm afraid I can't comment on anything as your entire post has been wiped out of my memory by your reference to a fauxgina! I've never even heard this expression before but it puts me in mind of a dress that Zainab wears in Eastenders (yes, I know, it's a terrible programme...). One of the flowers on her dress looks disconcertingly like a nipple - it's very distracting!

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  16. Very nice looking jacket! I don't think it looks masculine at all. The pinstripes are much wider than a men's style suit and the jacket is shaped so it looks feminine. So sorry to hear of the pocket issues. I still say a patch would work and look cute. Sort of like a School Girl Uniform where they wear jackets with the school crest sewn on.

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  17. Because of the way that the cut has happened - it has a random diagonal cut at the end! - I can't sew or patch the hole back together...but over on Twitter I had a suggestion for adding large patch pockets that would obscure the hole completely, which seems like a workable idea, so all is not lost!

    Thank you so much for your sympathies, suggestions and reassurance that it isn't as masculine a garment as I'm imagining it to be. x

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Thank you so much for taking the time to leave a message - it's always really lovely to hear from people.

I now tend to reply within the comments section, so please do check back if you've asked a question or wish to chat.

Florence x

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