The Birthday Jacket

As I explained in my last post, I have been invited out to the theatre to celebrate a very good friends special birthday. When I saw Vogue 1263 I knew I wanted to make it, and that it would be perfect for the occasion. I have not used ‘envelope’ patterns for many years as I have been drawing my own patterns (I am what might be described as a ‘difficult figure’). However, this seemed like a great re-introduction.

The style is described as very loose fitting and as I was straddling two sizes I opted for the smaller size. If you are in the same situation I would recommend doing the same. This is a generous jacket! The pattern pieces are easy to understand (despite having to tape two pieces together to get the massive main piece) but as I had decided on a fabric with a nap I decided to make enough pieces to cut it all in one flat piece (clear the furniture – she’s coming in!). I had also decided that, although the pattern would be fine as it was in a fabric that could show the reverse side without blushing, I wanted to line the jacket.

 It is going to be an easy exercise to make a lining – I will use the main pattern piece with the collar piece overlaid to show the remaining area I need to cut as the lining for the body (not forgetting to allow for the seams on the new piece, and take off the hem allowance). After that is done all I need to do is cut all the remaining pieces as the are with the exception of the sleeves which again are cut without the hem allowance. I will show how I put it into the jacket in a later post. The problem I have at present is that I have black satin lining in my stash – just not quite enough. Trip to Birmingham coming up.

Dont sew to a point - make it blunt

So far the only thing I would slightly change in the pattern instructions regards the pockets. The instructions tell you to sew down to the marker point and pivot before sewing straight back then slashing to the point before turning through and pressing. I prefer to make one stitch at the end (although I made 2 on this as the fabric is fairly bulky) which helps turn through without all the trouble at the point. I know it seems counterintuitive but this blunt end, to what is supposed to be a pointed seam, makes the finished turn much better (try it on a pointed collar).

I  made a slight error in cutting both pocket pieces in lining (again, I wanted to reduce bulk) and now find that the pocket back is slightly visible when wearing the jacket – not enough to worry about but I will remember for next time. I have passed the ‘abracadabra’ point where the whole mess suddenly turns into something you might eventually be able to wear by sewing the shoulder and collar seam, and set the sleeves in to try the fit. I am happy that it is all fine so when I get the necessary lining fabric I will continue to finish.

So far I like this jacket very much!


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