A list of dressmaking things I want to learn but might not get to in this course, for posterity:
- the mechanics of sleeve head curves and how they relate to end appearance
- how to draft a sleeve head from a given armsceye and vice versa
- how to fit a pinned sloper
- how to fit a pinned sloper to someone who isn't a thin femme person
- fitting mechanics for people who aren't thin femme people
- fitting mechanics for pants
- corsetry (mainly for support rather than aesthetics)
Very nearly done with the coat now - I have one sleeve to set, then some catch stitching to do on the facings, and then it's on to hemming.
I've decided to do machine blanket stitch a little bit back from the hem proper, which seems to look fine.
And then it's on to my coat... which needs some pattern alterations first, but that's what a long weekend is for, right?
I've decided to do an old-school sleeve lining - cutting two more sleeves from the rust-coloured cotton sateen, but a bit shorter (maybe by 3-4cm, eyeballing it from my store-bought lined jackets) and sewing the sleeve seam, then inserting them into the main sleeve and securing the hem.
From there, I'd then treat the sleeve as a single piece of fabric. Might need to baste the lining at the sleeve head but that's nbd.
Lichen coat progress: lower back assembly is 3/5 panels done. I finished the CB-gore seams last night and started the gore-SB seams, but lost at bobbin roulette.
If I can get the side-back panels on and start finishing the seams with the bias tape tonight, then the next step is the upper back panel. I haven't decided how to finish that seam yet - I'm thinking a welt seam, because a French seam would be too bulky and bias tape just wouldn't look as nice, I think.
I think my sewing machine has a blanket stitch, but I don't think I can vary the width or length any, and tbh I'm not even sure it actually is blanket stitch.
I do also need to think about seam and hem finishes already too.
Turns out the bias binding I bought is very, very light-coloured compared to the wool. So I've caved and cut the original pocket binding piece.
I can still use the bias binding to finish the seams where it'll be easier to do that way, but I'm less sure about the hems. I don't feel like it'll look good with the pale binding, but I'm not sure what else do to to protect the raw edge of the wool.
I figure this is the best way to prevent the embarassing 'put the gores in the wrong way' problem I've had before. Fewer pieces to manage.
I'm also once again contemplating somehow lining the sleeves and upper body, since there's loads of the heavy sateen left over. I couldn't make heads or tails of the instructions for modifications for lining pieces, so I figure I'll just like... Cut the same thing again, construct, and then flip inside out.
So, didn't get around to making the tested canvas test piece. And have other stuff to finish up that's probably going to get in the way.
But! I finally got the layout of the size 18 Lichen coat right on the wool. I've already cut the facings in heavy cotton sateen and done their edge finishing, and I made the belt in some of the black canvas.
And, I have cut the back pieces from the wool to start assembly.
I've decided as well to resume the attempt to refit the duster coat pattern from Buckaroo Bobbins, because with the weather turning as fast as it is, I need a waterproof coat that's not heavy or overly warm and that seems the quickest route.
Probably won't do it this weekend, but I am going to try to set some time aside to make up a test piece of the treated canvas to see what my skin thinks.
Put in the facings very very carefully (I'm seriously considering hand-sewing part of the collar even).
Tidy up the hem and figure out how to finish it (I'm thinking blanket stitch, but I'm not sure if my machine does that nicely).
I doubt I'm going to have the coat completely done by Monday, but I'm hoping to at least get the back done without the issues I had with the gores on the toiles.
While dealing with the back I also need to make sure I figure out the seam finishes and whether I need to use any binding there. (I think I will? We'll see.)
Cut and assemble the front of the coat, paying attention again to the gore hems and also which way the pockets go (also messed this up on both toiles) and finishing seams as I go.
Cut and set the sleeves, then sew up the sleeve seams and decide what I'm doing with the hems.
Weekend plan, roughly:
Finish turning belt for size 18 Lichen inside out.
Apply fusible to facing pieces
Review instructions and see if I need to finish any edges on the facings before sewing.
Start laying up the main coat tonight or tomorrow morning.
Cut and assemble the back of the coat, paying attention to what way the gore hems are oriented this time (I messed it up on both toiles) and adding the CB 'slot' for belt to pass through.
It's still frustrating though, and I still really feel like I need to look at another jacket or coat pattern to make sure that I actually have it right.
And there's so much more sewing I want to get finished, but so very little time... I think some public holiday weekends are coming up though, so I might have a chance to put enough time in to something for once.
Essentially, what I wanted was an underlap a bit narrower than what you might do for a double-breasted coat (but enough to improve the rainproofing over a standard button front) and the overlap such that the buttons sit on the CF line. I know, that probably means cutting seperate left and right fronts, but oh well.
I also just realised it would be worth doing a two-piece sleeve since the fabric (cotton canvas) is stiff enough even before waterproofing, and I doubt it softens up much.
I finished the toile of mine last night, and it looks like all I need to do is shorten the sleeves, bring the hem up a bit (so the longest part falls just below my knee instead of almost at my ankles) and take some width out of the waist (so it doesn't paper-bag when belted).
I'm thinking then that I might take a look at the Simplicity 8262 pattern and see if it gives me an idea of what to do with a buttoning front for a coat.
Ugh. Had to give up on the hooded coat pattern after an hour or so because I just cannot figure out how to do the front. I wanted two overlapping sections in front - the outer fastening with buttons, the inner secured with a couple of hook-and-eye fasteners - and I tried just extending the CF horizontally, but it somehow didn't look right.
I'm going to put that on the back burner and try to get the Lichen coats out of the way first.
Instead, I'm going for a knee-length contour seamed coat with a hood, and hopefully inseam pockets as well. I'm doing a small overlap in front with a combo of inner hook-and-eye fasteners and metal buttons for the outer (haven't actually chosen the buttons yet).
The biggest challenge is going to be lining the hood, since I either have to re-treat the neck seam or somehow sew in the hood lining after construction.
I decided against the duster coat though. While I'm not exactly opposed to doing what I have to in order to make a pattern (that being only using the Buckaroo Bobbins pattern for some guidance on drafting and the assembly instructions), what I really need is a coat with a hood. And I just don't think it'll look good that way.
The last dress in the series is going to be with a different neckline (torn between boat neck or doing a slight scoop neck) with lace-up sleeves and hopefully a full-length hem.
In the meantime, I finally got my hands on some black linen to make some Eastwood pants for myself. I'm still going to use some cheap printed cotton flannelette for the test pair, but if those turn out then it's fancy tracksuit pants time!
Phew, it's been a while...
I've mostly finished the grey wool dress and will try to get photos at some point. Sleeves didn't quite turn out how I wanted shape-wise, but for a fully hand-sewn garment... Not bad, I think.
I'm now working on a similar dress in some blue silk dupion I got from Homecraft Textiles with my black canvas. Same neckline, longer hem and looser sleeves though.
Australia | sleepy enby | inconsistent poster | I'm good at what I do, and what I do is make stuff and fall down research holes
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