Sunday, 25 November 2012

Liberty print jacket - Part 3

I've been busy again, this time altering my jacket.  It needed a few centimetres taking off each of the back seams to allow for my narrow back.  I won't post the photos of this as it was quite simple to do.

When I tried the jacket on, my dress making teacher suggested that it could do with some shoulder pads.    Now I thought, why not embrace the 1980s in a SUBTLE way!  

So, on I went to make them!

Here's my little guide to refresh my own memory:

  • Pin piece 1 (front) and 3 (back) together at shoulder seam, overlapping them by 3cm.
  • Trace the outline of the pattern pieces at the shoulder point and the neck point.  Mark 1.5cm into the 3cm overlap at both the shoulder point and neck point.  
  • Join 1.5cm marks with a broken line, put balance marks at the 1.5cm marks.
  • Draw the shoulder pad shape.  You want a curve on the front piece and a point on the back piece and for this pattern, it should be approximately 10cm down into the front and a little longer into the back. You want the peak of the curve to be at least 2cm from the front of the jacket (this is after the front seam has been taken into account).  

  • Once you have drawn the shape, cut it out and then cut 2 of the shape out of sew-in interfacing (remembering the balance marks at the 1.5cm points on both sides).  These are the top pair of shoulder pads.
  • You will also need an under pair of shoulder pads.  To make these, draw the shape again on your pattern piece, this time 6mm under the shape and parallel to the first shape.  Then place the pattern piece underneath some tissue paper and trace the smaller shape off the pattern.  Cut the smaller pattern out of the tissue paper.  Use this pattern to cut 2 of the shape out of sew-in interfacing (remembering the balance marks at the 1.5cm points on both sides).

  • You will also need some wadding to fill the shoulder pads with.  I already had my wadding and therefore can't remember the exact weight of it.  It is quite a thin one which I think is a safer option because you can always layer more pieces of wadding if you want more volume.  To cut the wadding, you need to follow the same step in number 6 i.e. the wadding has to be 6mm smaller along the curve than the under pair of shoulder pads.  If decided that 1 layer of wadding was enough for me, but if you did layer the wadding, you would have to cut the next layer 6mm smaller on the curve than the first layer of wadding.  
  • Lay the layers out - top pair on the bottom, then wadding, then under pair on top.  Pin. 
  • Turn the whole stack of layers over so that you are working with the top pair of shoulder pads facing you.  Turn the pins around so that they are on the top pair of shoulder pads.
  • You want to stitch the layers together by starting with a column of stitches approx 2cm in from the shoulder point edge (the first 1.5cm from this edge is the seam allowance so you do not want to stitch in this area).  The stitches need to be a small from the left to the right and the spacing needs to be long and diagonal.  As you stitch, you want to curve the layers with your index finger and the two fingers next to it placed vertically underneath the layers.  The needle should enter the layers where your index finger is.  This method of stitching will help the shoulder pads to maintain a curve.
  • Stitch a second row approximately 2cm from the first row.  
  • Stitch a third row by following the curve of the neck edge, making sure you catch all of the layers.  


And from the Knitting and Stitching Show in Harrogate this weekend, I bought two buttons which I think will match the jacket.  I'll see which one looks better when it's time to attach the button.  

So now, it's onto the sleeves and then bringing it all together!  Nearly there...

Sunday, 11 November 2012

Liberty print jacket - Part 2

Well, I've been on a roll this weekend!

Firstly, I've sewn the front and side front together and then added the welts.  This is my fist encounter with fake pockets and I think they look quite good!
From this...

To this...

Next it was onto the back pieces...

And then joining the front to the back...

I even made a start on the lining!

This is the front facing joined to the side lining
Back lining

And then I decided that it was time to come out of hibernation and put the sewing down for a bit!  There isn't much more I can do before having the jacket fitted.  I need to try it on and make any alterations before inserting the sleeves and completing the lining.  Then it will be a case of joining it all together and adding the collar.  

I still need to find a nice button, which is proving difficult.  I might wait until the Knitting and Stitching Show at Harrogate in a few weeks to find the perfect one.  

But I'm excited with my progress as I want to get on with making a dress for Christmas! 

Saturday, 10 November 2012

Onto the next...Liberty print jacket - Part 1

So my next project is New Look pattern 6013, which I bought in Lancaster earlier this year.  I've previously blogged about my choice of Liberty Fabric for this project in April's post, 'Liberty Loveliness'.  I've settled on view A which I think will make a lovely casual jacket and get me out of my trusted Ted Baker woollen cardigan, which admittedly has seen better days!

As far as pattern pieces go, I'm beginning to be a bit more organised with them.  Once I've cut them out of the fashion fabric I've started to organise the fabric pieces on the table with their corresponding tissue piece on top so that it's easy to identify the different pieces.  

This pattern calls for a lightweight fusible interfacing.  However, since discussing the construction techniques with my dress making teacher, we decided on a combination of medium and lightweight woven interfacing.  

I bought my woven interfacing from  This was my fist purchase from the website and considering woven interfacing is not cheap, I was unimpressed to find that the lightwight one had the selvage cut off on one side and the medium one had no selvage on either side!  So to try and get the grain line straight was a very difficult task.  Be warned if you buy these products from Jaycotts, I certainly won't be doing so again!

So this is what I cut for each of the numbered pattern pieces:

  1. 2 in lightweight (for jacket); 2 in medium (for facing);
  2. Medium for:  6.5cm deep, from 2.5cm above hem; piece to support welts; above line (near underarm);
  3. Medium for:  6.5cm deep, from 2.5cm above hem and upper back;
  4. Medim for:  6.5cm deep, from 2.5cm above hem and upper back;
  5. 1 in medium (as undercollar); 1 in lightweight (as collar);
  6. none
  7. 2 in medium;
  8. Medium for 6.5cm deep, from 1inch above hem.  

When I first read the pattern instructions I found myself disappointed that the jacket wasn't lined.  My dress making teacher has since told me that we can line the jacket quite easily.  She advised me to cut pattern pieces 2 (side front); 4 (side back), 3 (back) and 8 (sleeve) from my contrasting lining fabric.  For piece 3, I placed the pattern piece 2.5cm from the fold of the fabric.  This will prevent the back lining from ripping as it will be 2.5cm wider that the back piece of the jacket.

There was no need to cut piece 1 (front) or 5 (collar) as both have a facing in the fashion fabric.  And for obvious reasons pieces 6 (loop) and 7 (welt) do not need to be lined.

Now it's time to begin sewing!