According to my Sewing with a Plan project plan the fuchsia jacket should have been completed this weekend. I started two weeks ago and it should have been finished by now. But I don’t think I can go out like this. No sleeves, pockets, buttons or lining. And those tacks look, well, a bit strange. What do you think?
Looked at from a glass half full perspective we have
- darts (including two extra ones at the back)
- great tailors’ tacks,
- five fairly impressive bound button-holes,
- a reasonable stand collar (considering – see below). With pad stitching
- a hem with no visible stitching (hurrah!)
- the pockets, which I pledged to make perfectly, are ready to apply to the jacket. They are lined in pink silk. They are not perfect but I must press on
I have fallen behind due to being very busy at work. It has been a tough week putting together a great bid for a new town centre development, and preparing to present it effectively. Here are two of the amazing architects I have been working with – Scott and Rachel.
I have been carrying a lot of stress when a jacket like this needs a relaxed seamstress without too many demands on her time. But these are excuses. The real reason for my slow progress has been my ability to make mistakes that I avoided the first time I made this jacket.
The first problem was that I managed to prepare two left fronts. I only discovered when I kept looking for the right side in order to put in the button-holes. “Well that is the left front, the other one must be the right”. It is surprisingly easy to make this elementary error especially when the face and back of your fabric is very similar and your eyesight is a bit duff. Annoying, but not the end of the world. I unpicked the interfacing and darts, pressed the fabric gently, and repeated all the processes on the correct side of the cloth. Then I made the bound button holes – a process I really enjoy.
My second problem was more challenging. I created a grown-on facing, but this caused a problem I cannot, at this moment, fathom out. Somehow the facings, including the back neck facing, were something like 4 inches too short. And again, stupidly, I only discovered this once I had basted and permanently attached the inner collar to the facing, and found it didn’t fit. Not just attached but also trimmed closely to the seams. I found this error totally depressing. When I unpicked the facings, recut the right size, reattached them, and then sewed the collar it all actually went well. But I had dreaded it and procrastinated for four or five days. It needed concentration and a high degree of accuracy and I couldn’t bring myself to actually do it, taking the risk of making a complete and irreversible mess of it. The simple change to a facing treatment risked the whole finish of the collar – probably one of the most important aspects of the construction in terms of how professional it looks.
In the end, by giving it two or three hours of quality, relaxed attention on a Friday night, I am satisfied with the outcome. I am still behind schedule but I am now on the home straight.
A few danger areas still exist
- the pockets (making them nice and even, and square rather than rounded, and attaching them symmetrically and cleanly)
- the lining (choosing the right colour and inserting it accurately).
I have no worries about the sleeves, hems and buttons, although I don’t have any yet. I had planned to have the matching skirt ready next weekend, so I need to get a move on. I haven’t even chosen a skirt pattern yet, but it will probably be a vintage (1960s) one I have made before, a “TNT” pattern. I have three weeks “float time” in my project plan. It looks like I have blown one of them already. Let’s see if I can catch up without making a major error.