Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Dibs and Dabs on B 5960

If you are thinking of making this coat and so far I would recommend this pattern, you may want to book mark these posts as I have done much that is not in the pattern instructions. Let's talk about stays first.

A stay is something that helps  hold a garment's intrinsic shape. It doesn't shape the garment, just helps it keep it's shape. Stays can go all sorts of places. There are waistline stays, pockets stays, all sorts of stays. Stays don't move, are flat and "stay" in one place. For our purposes here the stay will have a several functions. First, it will maintain the shape of a very heavy garment. Whew, I didn't know how heavy till I started connecting the pieces yesterday. This WILL be warm. To maintain that shape it is critical the stay is on grain with the garment. This is no time to cut a partly crooked piece from a scrap. Since there is no more howling wolf fabric I used a perfectly sized well washed piece of heavy navy blue flannel. I took the back piece from the pattern, laid it on grain just like the fashion fabric. This piece extended about 5 inches below the armscye. Cut!


Then I took my crotch curve and shaped the back of the stay at the bottom edge as you see above. 

Next, that edge was cut with pinking shears to help eliminate any transfer of the edge to the fashion fabric while pressing. 
Done! If you are one of my astute followers you have noticed that the pins on side are inserted differently from the other side. I will be sewing the stay on with a half inch SA starting at the center back neckline. As I detest sewing "on the left" I inserted the pins so those big yellow heads aren't in the way when I flip over the piece to sew the other side from the CB neck down. The bottom edge hangs free. 

Cashmere does not like much ironing so I am ironing my seams only at this point. that will change as I go along. I am trying to fuss as little as possible with this fabric. So that center back ridge will press out. 

Stays will also be put into the side front pieces. The second reason to use a stay here is to "fill in" my hollow upper chest. I learned that trick many years ago. In a more tailored jacket I would do the flannel stay and attach a "chest piece" of hair canvas. But this is a bathrobe type coat, not a trim blazer, so the hair canvas is left out. 

The third reason for the stay in this construction is to add a bit of good old fashioned warmth to the mix here. I've done this combo before, coating+Kasha+flannel interlining. It makes a very warm coat, even in my challenging climate. 

This project has had VERY little actual machine sewing but there has been much handwork. I wanted to make sure the upper collar favored the under collar so rolled it to the under collar, pressed it, basted it in place with silk thread and pressed it again on a thick terry towel.  It's looking good. 


Another bit of handwork I did that's not mentioned in the pattern involves the outer pocket. I basted the pocket opening shut. This is important to get the pocket bag to set right for topstitching. Ignore the lumps. There are lots of bigheaded pins underneath.

Next in the process is finish up the pockets and topstitch. They are a unique construction. That shouldn't take too long. Then it will be on to installing the sleeves. Now For some thank yous!

 
Check out this fabulous print that I won from Rhonda Buss! Her blog, Rhonda's Creative Life is fabulous. Rhonda loves to draft patterns and every week shares her latest designs with her followers. Stop by and check out her mad skills.  But if you have already been following Rhonda you will  know that besides her gifted design abilities she is one of the most generous people you could find. Her recent pillowcase project will blow you away. Week after week, day after day, she shared photos of the hundreds of pillowcases she collected, all hand sewn, and donated. There's lots about it on her blog. Recently she shared a giveaway for some of her Valentino prints and this lucky blogger was thrilled to have her name drawn. Thanks, Rhonda! 
I am not a machine embroiderer. Bless those who are, but it is just not my thing, at least at this time. But somehow I clicked on the Sew News site to check out something to do with machine embroidery. It seems they were running a 12 days of Christmas giveaway. Got my name picked for that one too, Day 3! I won two sets of fabric paint markers. They have brush tips and are permanent on fabric. I am looking forward to playing with them and my mind is twirling over what I could do. Thank you, Sew News!

I did go out and buy a few lottery tickets at this time but, alas, no such luck!

And last but not least, a peak at my next project:

Woohoo!....Bunny

19 comments:

  1. When you said you were lining with Kasha I wondered how it could be warm enough for your climate but the addition of flannel underlining will definitely make it warm. I am getting ready to make a coat as well, though I am not as far along. I am underlining in cotton flannel but never thought to make the back stay in flannel as well. Thanks I'll be making my back stay in flannel too.

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  2. Look at our luck lately, Bunny! Nice wins!!! I echo your sentiments about Rhonda. I was lucky enough to spend a weekend sewing alongside her this fall, she is a lovely, generous, smart, funny, and incredibly talented sewing lady... much like yourself!!!

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  3. This is going to be a masterpiece with all the extra details you've added!

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  4. Stays are great, I always use them! Very cool print you've won, I hope you're better at getting things framed than I am so you can get up hung up to enjoy!

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    1. The print was purchased. I wish I had won it, too!

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  5. Hi Bunny. I'm so happy that you like the illustration and I'm happy that it has found a new home where it will no longer live in a closest like it did at my house :) Your sentiments are awfully sweet and greatly appreciated. BTW, I can't wait to see what the new fabric will be. Boy oh boy do I every love it!!

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  6. Hello from a new follower that so appreciates and enjoys the detail you put into your creations. I love watching your process and can't wait to see your finished coat. Best to you in the new year. Mcdonna on PR

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    1. Thanks, Madonna, and welcom aboard!

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  7. Well, Bunny you are certainly on a roll for winning and working! Stays just make the jacket keep it's shape and last longer and they used to be in every well made garment even if they were just made out of thin batiste...never mind flannel...how cozy! All your tips and tricks are so perfect in the sequence of making a perfect garment and those crazy quick "sew it all by machine" sewers can certainly learn a few things by slowing down and getting into some handwork and planning and good pinning.

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  8. The detail photos already look so good. Enjoying to see your progress. A coat is in my short term plans, but too often my plans change.

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  9. Hi there Darling Bunny

    Happy New Year by the way!!
    After our computer being wiped out, before Christmas, everything lost, new computer purchased and paid for set................and days later same thing..............I am now braving it to write to you.

    I totally adore your blog, am the most avid of fans and have missed popping in. So, just returned home from being out all day and just had to catch up.

    Loving this section on the coat. I am just working my way through my first ever Marfy pattern ( IBS diagnosis means I have had to fiddle with the toile and learn for the first time, how to increase waist and hip to a pattern ! LOL). So, why am I so excited................well, I have some cashmere/mohair/wool fabric in my pre Christmas stash purchase to make..............my first ever coat. How amazingly lucky can this avid follower get, I am so thrilled that I can learn through you darling Bunny what I should do, to raise my coat to the couture standard I would be aiming for.........as ever, if it turns out beautifully it will be due to your superb guidance. The Vogue pattern has been ordered as we speak. Must make the Marfy dress first though.

    Your fabric looks wonderful and I am pleased you are also incorporating the "howling wolf" too..............what joy and fun.

    So, again a very happy and productive New Year to our most wonderful and totally inspirational t eacher.

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    1. I hope this post answers your questions about stays. If not let me know. Glad your comp is back up and on line!

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  10. I cannot wait to see your coat finished Bunny.

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  11. I am working up the courage to sew my first coat, and your posts are very helpful! As I collect information and materials, I have some questions about the flannel stays. If one purpose is warmth, why are they so short? How did you decide exactly how long they should be? Why did you shape the bottom edge of the back stay the way that you did?

    You also say that stays are flat - if my single-breasted pattern (V1266) has princess shaping, can I use flannel stays?

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    1. There purpose is not just warmth. I primarily put in the stays as it is traditionally done in tailored coats and jackets. I then figured if I am going to do this I might as well use flannel instead of the usual muslin recommended to add a bit of additional warmth. The shape of the back stay is simply the way they are made in traditional tailoring. My guess why this shape is used is to hide the line that could telegraph through to the fashion fabric if pressed too hard. A straight line across would be more unsightly and obvious. The curving line would fool the eye more. There may be some other specific reasons why but I am not aware of any others. Not being someone to take chances with expensive fabric, I went with traditional tailoring techniques that are time proven.

      As far as using them in your princess styled coat, I definitely would add them if it were me. If you have a good book on sewing or tailoring this would be a great time to review some of the techniques required. Usually the upper chest to shoulder area is benefited by what is called a "chest piece". You can find this info in most good sewing manuals. I don't like to have a lot of bulk in seams so I would do the chest piece, usually hair canvas, seams cut back and attached to a base fabric, usually. This is pretty much how I did the front in the previous post but I didn't cut the base fabric back. HTHs. Again, if you are making that lovely Vogue coat, check out some good sewing/tailoring books from the library. All the touches of tailoring, which were definitely missing from this pattern, go miles to make your garment look better, hang better, fit better, and look more expensive. Good luck with your project.

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  12. Very interesting process. Thanks for sharing the details! How is the cashmere behaving when you press? I ask because I have a wool/cashmere blend coating waiting to be cut, and I certainly don't want to ruin it. I was planning to pretreat it with a very steamy iron. Am I making a big mistake?

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  13. Cashmere is touchy to press. I press as little as possible using a heavy folded terry towel underneath. I always press from the wrong side except for the final finish on the seams outside. Always use a press cloth. For my seams I really like to put the water right in the seams with a paintbrush or dauber and use a dry iron and press cloth. HTHs.

    I pretreated mine with a heavy steaming as well and it worked out fine.

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  14. In search of a piece of fabric you used back in 2010... (your words on the blog) "And last but not least a Noriko made with an Alex Henry fabric that looks like sharp edged grass reeds from the swamps of Louisiana. This one is my personal fave." I used that fabric on a wall hanging piece of the man in the maze, and would like to find it somewhere. I've been looking, but to no avail. Any suggestions?

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