This project came about as the result of me being helpful to a fellow sewer & blogger. She needed to clear out her stash & who was I to let perfectly good fabric pass me by? Evie from Pendle Stitches had a whole bundle of pretty things needing new homes, and when I spotted a spicy coloured cotton twill, I knew I had to have it. Belle is very into this colour this season so I figured it would be made quickly and not get anywhere near my stash!
When it arrived it got the seal of approval, but what to make. Initially a 60s dress was suggested, with another rescued fabric being a plaid jacket to wear with it. There wasn’t enough to make the jacket, so I suggested a jacket in the twill & skirt in the plaid. SOLD! The chosen pattern for the jacket, Butterick 7315 was added to my pattern collection earlier in the year for 50p from a charity shop in Tewkesbury. Just 50p! It was unused, but had been opened up and refolded. I traced it off & got cracking on a toile which fitted surprising well! All I needed to do was widen the shoulder, but that’s normal for Belle, I just need to know by how much.
I decided to line the jacket. As Belle is going to be wearing it this season it made no sense to leave it as a single layer. This meant I was able to get some good structure in the interfacing inside. We chose a Liberty lawn for the body of the jacket & a remnant of grey-ish lining fabric for the sleeve. The pattern itself is easy to make, vintage instructions are pretty clear. I made lining pattern pieces from the traced pattern, adding a good pleat in the centre back. Gill Arnold’s fusible interfacings were used on all the relevant areas, with the lighter weights for the facings & undercollar.
I really like this jacket, it has a fabulous shape all round & the darts in the sleeve give it good shape. The little fold-back cuffs look good too, and maybe if I made it again I’d play with adding some sort of detail there. We struggled to pick buttons for this jacket – mostly because of the colour! Like chosing the lining, it was so easy to pick safe, predictable and ultimately, boring & dated buttons. I picked out black, brown, cream, brass military, dark olive green and deep blue buttons in the hope that something would work. In the end it was chance that decided. I’d dropped some left over fabric onto the pile of fabric to be used next, the top piece being a dark blue stretch denim for a pair of Ginger Jeans. The dark blue denim looked so good with the orange that we decided there & then to go with blue buttons!
I couldn’t resist seeing how the jacket looked as I sewed, so before the lining went in I put it on my vintage dress form.
It’s pretty interesting to see the difference in how it looks with & without the lining!
Once Belle was around to try it on again before I sewed the lining down around the hem I wanted to see how the sleeves and shoulders were looking. It seemed to me that it needed a bit of help in the shoulder area, so I slipped a shoulder pad in on her right shoulder, see if you can make out any difference, I swear it looked more marked in real life than it does in these photos!
I added shoulder pads after this, and I much prefer the overall look. It’s just more finished off. But let me talk lining. I had hoped to find something in the stash but as luck would have it, none of the pieces were big enough. I popped into my local fabric store in Stratford on Avon but the linings were all a bit safe, boring & definitely looked too dated and old fashioned for a 17-going-on-18-year-old. So I checked out the Liberty lawn. They had a sale on so I figured, “what harm could I do?” I bought 1m in the end, a leaf/feather print in red, blue, yellow & black. No orange in sight… How can it possibly work, I hear you ask. See what you think.
Weirdly enough, it works – just like the blue buttons!
I apologise for the grainy filter on these photos. Unfortunately the quality of light this week has been pretty dire & they all came out so blue. This was the only way I could get some semblance of the right colour.
What’s next after this? Certainly not another jacket! 🙂 Although, they do say “Never say never”….