Sunday, July 12, 2015

It's a Coat! It's an Accessory!


TOC:

Silhouette Patterns Swing Coat, #1855

Sartorial info:
Dress: wool doubleknit blogged here
Necklace: felt, blogged here
Bracelet: pewter, purchased last spring on my visit to Hakone Gardens gift shop
Earrings: resin and silver, purchased last March at the Tacoma Museum of Glass in Tacoma Washington (on my trip to Puyallup)
Leggings: purchased from Uniqlo
Boots: over-the-knee style, purchased two years ago at Urban Outfitters

I've made my first Silhouette pattern by Peggy Sagers!

Yes, this IS a coat, but Peggy thinks of it as an accessory, and I think she's right! You can hear this in her own words in her "Spring 2015 Looks" podcast, where she is wearing this coat. She starts talking about the coat at 28:30.

This coat is my version of Silhouette Patterns #1855, made in metallic-coated stretch denim.

This pattern is designed as an unlined, lightweight, swing coat with a back inverted box pleat, French darts, single welt pockets, 3/4 length sleeves with a folded back split cuff, and a wide dramatic collar.

What attracted me to this pattern was the dramatic collar. I really wish that pattern companies would realize how flattering a good collar can be, particularly for a mature woman who might want to draw attention upwards, towards the face. I would love to see more patterns that feature a wider variety of interesting collars!

What didn't work for me on this pattern was the swing shaping with the back pleat, so I removed that. My only other alteration was to narrow the shoulder by 1". Silhouette Patterns use their own sizing system (sizes 1-4 and 5x-8x) and come in cups A, B, C and D. They include finished measurements on the pattern envelope, not body measurements. Peggy's theory is that everyone likes a different amount of ease, so you should choose a size knowing how you like your clothing to fit.

Currently, my high bust is 40" and my full bust is 45". I chose the size 4, which lists a finished measurement of 45-1/2". I cut out a D cup though, in reality I am far larger than a D. I did not do an additional FBA. The sizing, except for the too-wide shoulder (typical for me), was fine. As mentioned, the only other alteration I did was to remove fullness at the hip and the pleat at CB, as I look better in a straighter silhouette.

The metallic coated stretch denim was quite easy to work with, though I did use a silk organza press cloth as a barrier between the iron and the metallic coating. Without the organza, the metallic finish transferred to the iron. But the fabric was otherwise a delight to sew and press. (I just threw the fabric in the washer/dryer before cutting, and it came out fine.)

I had a few minor issues.

Peggy doesn't recommend interfacing, which is rarely used in RTW - her primary influence is RTW. The metallic coated denim I used had a lot of body, so I didn't use interfacing, but be aware that you might want to interface the collar, cuffs and front areas. I would probably interface if I made this again, particularly if the fabric lacked crispness.

Also be aware that the pattern doesn't include a pattern piece for a back neck facing. I should have just drafted one myself, but I didn't, so the raw edge (which I serged) shows at the back neck. I do not care for that sort of finish, so I would definitely draft a back neck facing next time.

The pattern was well drafted, but there is a small problem with the production. The first review of this pattern on Pattern Review warned that it was hard to locate the proper markings for the pleats on the collar. Forewarned is forearmed, so I took special pains to locate the pleat markings when I was cutting out the pattern tissue in a size 4, D cup. Oy. It was almost impossible to read these markings. This is not a drafting problem, but a production problem. I spent quite a bit of time on this and, in the end, I pretty much had to guess. I had the same problem with the pleats on the bottom of the sleeve. Luckily, the precise location and size of the pleats seems to be fairly forgiving, but be aware that it's tricky.

I enjoy watching Peggy Sagers' free podcasts. You can access her back episodes on her website.


Fall Vogue Patterns

Have you seen the new Vogue patterns for Fall? There are some great designs in the mix! I don't have time to do an actual review of the offerings, but I am really looking forward to the next BMV sale to get my hands on some of them, particularly Marcy's coat and pants pattern, and Sandra Betzina's tunic. Sandra's tunic is practically designed to flatter my figure.

Marcy's jacket and pants, Vogue 9140

Sandra's tunic, Vogue 1456

There is lots to like in the Fall 2015 pattern collection!


JillyBe Update

Those of you who know and love JillyBe's blog can't help but notice that she's been quiet in the last year or so. Jillian has been dealing with some serious health issues. She is overcoming them, but she has a ways to go.

When she told me of her diagnoses a year ago (of liver cancer and that she would likely need a new liver), she told me that she didn't want people to feel sorry for her, she wanted them to tell her a joke! Jillian's attitude, which I sometimes characterize as "fiercely positive", has helped her weather the last year in good spirits.

If you'd like to learn more, please read Angels for Jillian’s Liver Transplant.


Birthday Outing

Last week was my birthday. That, in itself, is not newsworthy, but I had a great, photo-less afternoon and evening visiting with two sewing friends: Ronda Chaney, and Patti Ferguson (along with her husband and son). On Saturday, I spent the day with my daughters.

Yes, this is indulgent, but I like keeping track of these outings, or I'd forget the details! :)

Hiking in Henry Cowell State Park

Lunching at Gayle's Bakery in Capitola. Great food! These are my daughter's shared desserts.

Shopping in Capitola's downtown

Hanging at the beach. I was grateful for the mild 75° weather!


Ending up at Harts Fabric in Santa Cruz! (Where I did not buy a thing!)

Have a great week!

53 comments:

  1. 1. Love the coat - Peggy's so great. 2. Thanks for updating us on Jillybe. She's amazing #hugs. 3. Great coat spotting. 4. I agree totally that memories with family need to be recorded. Time flies by too quickly.

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    1. Thanks, velosewer! I do like Peggy and was disappointed that she became ill and had to miss Puyallup this year!

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  2. Love, love the jacket--Superb job with that fabric! So sorry to hear of Jilly's situation. Happy belated birthday!!

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  3. What a fabulous jacket made with fabulous fabric - love the pairing! My shopping cart at McCalls also holds the Marcy T and Sandra B patterns awaiting a sale. Happy belated birthday and pics of your beautiful daughters shows the similarity between all 3 of you especially your smiles and twinkly eyes! Karen

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    1. Thanks, Karen! Yes, bring on that BMV sale! :D

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  4. Wow, you are impressively bold in this coat. Looks way cool! You rock.

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    1. Thanks, Glenda! Yes, this is not a coat I plan to wear to work! I'll probably use it mostly for going out.

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  5. I also have my eye on those two patterns - esp the trousers. Totally agree with Glenda on the bold coat.

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  6. Sounds like you had a very Happy Birthday, Shams! Friends, family, a hike and an interesting beach are my kind of celebration too. Love the shiny coat with the fab collar! I hadn't seen that pattern before so thanks for bringing attention to it. So sorry to hear about Jillian's health issues. Wishing her all the best.

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    1. Thanks, Louisa! Yes, I figured a lot of people would be interested in this pattern! I'm grateful to Peggy for bringing us lots of high-end ready to wear designs! I have a couple of her other patterns that will appear at some point.

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  7. You look glamorous in your new coat, and great point about interesting collars; I love them too. Thank you for sharing some scenes of your time with your daughters; it does my heart good to see family members who love each other. Thank you also for letting your readers know about Jilly's health challenge; her spirit is so inspiring.

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    1. Thanks, Carol! I think my daughters turned out well in spite of my parenting! We make so many mistakes, but luckily they are pretty resilient!

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  8. Belated birthday wishes. Glad you had a marvellous time. Love the coat...that denim is just amazing.

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  9. Your silver coat is totally fabulous!! I thought I had a cool silver coat but no. I have a regular silver coat!!! YOU have the cool silver coat!!

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  10. Indeed, your silver coat is AMAZING! And I totally agree with you about the dearth of dramatic collars in current pattern design. That's one of the reasons I occasionally use OOP Designer patterns...they quite often have cool collars. Your birthday celebration with your girls looked like great fun. You three seem to always
    have the best time!

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    1. Yes!!! Many vintage patterns have *wonderful* collars! And thanks!

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  11. The jacket is lovely. Now exactly what do you use on your skin. I believe we might be near in age, but your skin looks as nice as your daughters'.

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    1. Wow, Eileen, what a kind comment! I don't "do" all that much with my face. I eat a lot of veggies and drink water. I've never gone into the sun much and have moisturized since I was a teen (Noxema back then). I just recently started using (on Margy's recommendation) Eucaren Hyaluron, which comes from Europe, I believe. ( http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00HYAN79U?psc=1&redirect=true&ref_=oh_aui_detailpage_o03_s00 ).

      As for makeup, I don't wear a lot but, when I do I use Laura Geller baked makeup. I like to wear lipstick or lip gloss, and I almost never wear any eye makeup, though I know I look better with it! (Especially brow makeup, but I often can't be bothered.)

      I don't know how helpful this is!

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  12. Great coat. I've been eyeing that pattern. Looks good. And thanks for the update on Jilly - I knew we'd not heard from her. I appreciate you updating us on Jilly. I loved her blog and her creations also.

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  13. I love the jacket on you! Great design and the perfect fabric too. Thanks for the info on Jilly I wondered about her. I love to get your posts they are always fun to read and I learn too.

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  14. Wow shams, thank you! I can't imagine a more auspicious place to come out to the global sewing community with my health stuff than your blog! Thank you SO much for thinking of me, and linking to my YouCaring site! It's already having an impact, and means a lot to me! xoxo Love that you had such a fabulous birthday - happy happy year to you!

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    1. You are an inspiration, Jilly Be!

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  15. Lovely family photos! And what a great coat. The fabric makes it pretty special too.

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  16. Enjoyed the family pics and activities.
    Oh yes, and the Coat 😎

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  17. oh thank you so much for linking to the site for JillyBe!!! (Hi Jilly!) a good friend of my mom's got a new liver a year ago Easter, truly a gift of life. How lucky you are to have Laurel, Jilly - tho i am sure you know that!

    Sharon, you are Communing with Ziggy Stardust in Suffragette City! That is one rockin' coat, and i love that it is so perfect for our weather and lifestyle here in the bay area. It would be flat out BRUTAL to have such a gorgeous piece and watch it sit in the closet.

    I really agree about collars! i've loved a dramatic collar since i was young, and find they're just easier to wear the more 'gravitas' i accumulate (at least i like to think of it as gravitas, ha!). That Betzina tunic will flatter lots of figures, and Marcy's new coat looks so cozy - even tho it's 90F now!

    Happy birthday and thanks for sharing all the fun pics! Capitola is a really sweet town, even sweeter with those you love.

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    1. LOL... Ziggy Stardust in Suffragette City! Thanks, Stephanie!

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    2. Thank you Stephanie!!!! And yes, I am incredibly lucky to have Laurel in my life! Along with, of course, many fabulous friends like shams :)

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  18. Another dramatic collar lover here, and this one is fabulous! Once again your fabric choice and pattern execution are a pair made in sewing heaven.

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    1. Yes, I knew you'd get it! Thanks, Bunny!

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  19. that jacket is fantastic, love the fabric choice. And yes I like a dramatic collar too (made a Burda one last winter, I am waiting for chilly weather to return).
    When I saw those new Vogues I knew you would be ordering the ones you mentioned - they have your name all over the. I didn't see much of anything I wanted but I always say that, ha ha. Looks like a very fun birthday.

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    1. You know me all to well, Beth! And thanks!

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  20. Thank you soooo much for the update on Jilly!!! She has always been my favorite blogger and I didn't know what happened. Once in a while someone has mentioned her in their blog...like when she would be at a function or group get together. I thought she was burned out and needed "time", but she would be blogging again soon. Hugs for Jilly!!!

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    1. and Happy Belated Birthday, Shams!!! Nice pictures!!!!

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  21. That coat is amazing! can you tell me where you got the fabric?
    thanks you!

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    1. Hi Pamela! That fabric is from my stash, purchased over 2 years ago. I actually bought the denim in several metallic versions, so it will appear again in gold or something else. :)

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  22. Great looking coat! Suits your style to a T! Love the fabric!

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  23. Love your coat and couldn't agree more about collars . I have mulled over this and have started drafting my own . I realized that to get the Stand Away feature which is flattering , you have to increase the difference in length between the outside of the collar and the neck edge . This is done by crossing over the shoulder seams of the front and back of the bodice block when you are doing the draft . The more you cross them over on the shoulder edge ( not the neck edge where the seam allowances only should be taken out) the more the collar stands away from the face which I think is what makes this collar so attractive on you . This has enabled me to make some of my own collars which is fun.

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  24. Well, I agree with everyone else, that coat is WOW! So glad you had such a happy birthday, your daughters are delightful. Hugs to Jillian too.

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  25. Your coat is so fun and amazing, a real individual just like you! I love it. Very very cool :) I think you're right about collars. Some interest and variety would be nice. There are about a million fantastic inspirations on pinterest, but you have to work out how to do them yourself. That should be easy for a lady of your skills!
    And look at you and your gorgeous daughters! such lovely pictures of you all. It looks like a really lovely day out. Wishing you a very happy belated birthday from me! (hugs and kisses)

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  26. Where to start...what a cool coat! and happy belated birthday.

    Thank you so much for the update on Jillian. I've missed her and am glad to know what's transpired. How sad, I'll go now and visit the site. She's in my thoughts.

    And back to the coat - thanks for the tips on the draft and tissue. You did a wonderful job of overcoming. Vogue - I'm with you, waiting for the BMV sale, this is a great collection.

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  27. By chance I linked to your blog this morning and saw the photo of Henry Cowell park! My daughter and family had lived right next to it in Felton until last year... such a beautiful place, and it brought back pleasant memories :) Love your blog! I too am always on the lookout for patterns that flatter my own busty figure, and I'll be looking for that Vogue Marcy coat (and pants) pattern. Thanks!

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