Thursday, January 15, 2015

Ottobre 5/2009 #18 Winter Coat: Muslin to Collar Progess

I muslined out this coat back in November!!  Life happens-- holidays, everyone being sick for weeks on end, having my kitty go through weeks of treatment for an illness, etc, etc... I was doing basically only instant gratification projects since this muslin... but the coat is back and I'm trucking along nicely.

I picked up just three yards of this hefty purple with white Marc Jacobs wool blend back in the Fall of 2013.  With three yards only, I was limited to what coat I could sew up with it.  I whipped out my one and only Ottobre Magazine, the 5/2009 edition (Autumn/Winter) for pattern #18 and realized how much I liked the simple, clean lines of it-- nothing over the top, a classic look, and most of all it's takes under three yards of fashion fabric.  This is my very first time using their patterns.

It was pure luck I had this ugly striped cotton/poly fabric in my stash--- it was perfect to line stuff up and see what I needed to alter.  I cut a size 42 and graded out to a 46.  These are my standard Burda sizes and it looked to match up with Ottobre's sizing as well.  The muslin ended up working pretty well in the upper half, but I did NOT need to grade to a 46 as the proportions on me looked weird (see pics above).  I reduced the lower width back to size 42.  It's a pretty full cut a-line style, so I wasn't too surprised.

You can see where reducing the width of the lower half  worked out... but in the different lighting I realized that the back seam was looking like a hot mess.  Well, I went back in and fixed that but was too lazy to take any photos of that muslin change. Boo hoo.  The only other alteration I made was adding 1" (2.5 cm) to the length of the sleeves, but I just did that before I even made a muslin.

In the above pics is some progress.  That nasty back seam ripple is gone and now lies flat.  I need to adjust the front hem some, it's lower then I'd like... it's really not as bad as the angle of the pics make it out to be though.

What's interesting  to note with this coat pattern is that there is no separate facing on the front, it's all one piece joined with the bodice.  All I do is fold it back when it's sewed.  You can see all the pattern pieces lined up above on my fashion fabric.

I've cut out an underlining as well from a cotton flannel for the bodice.  Since my fashion fabric is so beefy I will sew the flannel together separately and then hand sew it in to the shoulder and arm openings of the coat.  Otherwise I bet the seams would be so thick my sewing machine wouldn't sew it properly.

I am essentially not using the directions from the magazine.  I've occasionally looked at them for the sake of making sure I am making a coat that looks like the technical drawing and that's really it.  I'm using the book Tailoring: The Classic Guide to Sewing the Perfect Jacket as my guide for direction.  I used it before for my trench coat last spring.  Not mentioned in the book, I opted to interface the entire coat with weft interfacing.  I will be using sew-in hair canvas in critical areas that need more support including the collar, lapels, pockets, etc.  I may just go ahead and cut the hair canvas on the bias for my hems rather then get my lazy butt to buy some wigan.

I have to tell you (and some may snicker) but I used the machine sewn technique to sew in my hair canvas onto my collar.  I confess I did not want to pad stitch it. It's all perfectly explained in the book and the technique created a lovely, firm collar.  You can see my collar stand, undercollar and collar pieces all delightfully prepped to be assembled, put on ye olde tailor's ham and steamed to perfection.

And here she is below... happy as can be waiting on the ham for her moment to shine.  I've actually marked out my bound button holes tonight.  Those are super easy but just take time and patience.


  1. Its looking great! Tailoring is an awesome book isn't it - I've only used the fusible tailoring in it though, I like the idea of machine padstitching - I tried hand stitching it once and its still sitting half done on my shelf, lol, I might try the machine version next coat I think!

  2. Your coat looks great. I hate making muslins but I do make them for the more complicated garments and I never regret it. Thanks for the tip on the book. There is another book that is pretty good too - Tailoring coats for women - I don't know who it is by.

  3. It's looking great! I also have some of this fabric and haven't been sure how to use it yet...can't wait to see your completed coat!

  4. GOOOOO!!!! I can't wait to see it!! <3

  5. Saw your review at PR and had to come and read more about your sewing journey. Your coat looks great!