Hammers at the ready for this one! Not sure I have ever put so much hardware into one project but I’ve got to admit I’m now quite addicted! Putting together a really beautifully matched set of snaps, zip, toggles, elastic cord (gold!!!) and eyelets has really lifted this jacket and I know I’m going to be grabbing it every cool summer evening or nippy winter morning.
I wanted a traditional denim jacket look with a bit of military/bomber/utility mashed in, so we have the traditional yoke and shaped panels front and back but then the collar, zip, snaps panel, shaped hem and pockets shimmied their way in to create the overall look.
The base and starting point of this jacket was a shirt pattern I have made three or four times already (and love the fit). I always grab a pattern that is close to what I want as my starting point, there is no point in re-inventing the wheel and drafting from scratch if the basic shape of what you want is already in your pattern stash.
First part of the process was to split the shirt panels. At the front I threw the dart away from the side seam and into the vertical seam. The seams at back and front were curved to give shape at the waist but a slightly broader fit across the shoulders, so even the chunkiest of jumpers could be accommodated on especially chilly days.
The collar was a total ‘off-piste’ adventure, I brought together the button panel, collar stand and collar into one continuous shape, curved toward the shoulder line and cut on the fold so it could be joined as one single piece. The front centre panels and front yoke were curved to mirror the collar shaping so the front of the jacket all worked together to give a nice line whether the collar is up or down.
I was a good girl, I made a toile…… and I can’t stress enough what a good practice this is when you are making major changes to an existing pattern.
The amount you learn about the whole balance of the garment and how your changes have a knock on effect for other elements of the pattern is fantastic. I went to town and even put the pockets and epaulets in place to check their sizing and position before taking my scissors to the denim (as I mentioned earlier re-cutting any element of the pattern was a no-no as I had no excess fabric!)
The lining on this jacket is extra special and has a couple of nice little features. Firstly, there is a shaped phone pocket that sits to the left hand side of the lining and snuggles in under the arm. This idea actually came from my brother who was grumbling one day that his phone always ruined the line of his jacket when he put it in the inside breast pocket and “why couldn’t they tuck it under the arm?”
Hey presto – the nifty, line preserving, angled, inside pocket was born!! I was bit nervous about tucking a welt pocket diagonally into the lining, but with a bit of stay stitching and using both the denim and flower lining fabric for welts, I ended up with a both pretty and stable pocket opening.
The lining also has this beautiful floral fabric across the yoke. As soon as I saw this fabric I fell in love with it and knew I did not want to use all I had been given by the lovelies at Sew Crafty and hide it away inside the jacket. It was also so beautifully lightweight I knew the areas of stress at the hem and under the arms were going to need something a little more robust.
So, after a rummage in the workshop I unearthed about three meters of taupe linen mix that I had picked up in charity shop ages ago (fabric Womble alert!! I once went to a funeral and still managed to come home with some fabric, so there you go!)
When I laid it all out together it was a match made in heaven, but please don’t fret about the floral fabric lying dormant for too long, I had intended to add colour stripe cuffing (another new product in the sew crafty store) to this jacket, but once it had all come together I felt (a very rare feeling for me!) that less is more. So the stripy cuffing and floral fabric will be making an appearance in my next SCDT project, watch this space….!
The lining follows the outer pattern completely, the collar was cut twice from the denim and I popped a reinforcing semi-circular panel at the back of the neck to take the hanging loop and a lovely big label as I am too chuffed to hide my light under a bushel on this make!!
The exterior of this jacket has been topstitched into next week! Luckily I have made my own jeans a couple of times already, so making sure all rows of topstitching had been meticulously added during the construction process was something I was well prepared for. I opted against a twin needle as 1. I didn’t have one that had a wide enough separation between the needles and 2. I had corners to turn in some places, which never goes well with a twin needle!!
A total coating of Scotch Guard once complete will mean I’m totally shower proof. If I had had enough to spare I’d have made a snap on hood, but I used every mm of the 1.5m of beautiful Jade denim from www.sewcraftyshop.couk for this project with some very nifty pattern placement to get all I needed from the fabric.
This project has been so totally and utterly enjoyable from start to finish and I am so pleased with the results. It involves everything I love about making your own clothes: beautiful finishing, total uniqueness, attention to detail and perfect fit.
This Jacket will be worn and worn which, at the end of the day, is what you do with clothes you love!
Sew Crafty Design Team
Jade Jacket Adventure