Thursday, 24 March 2016

The continuing story of a French jacket



Fifteen months ago I took a break from working on my French jacket. It was meant to be a spring/summer jacket and once I had missed the time slot other sewing projects seemed more urgent. The jacket was carefully packed away in a box, together with thread, chain and every bit of leftover fabric. I hoped to pick it up again last March, but by then coral coat fabric had taken over my sewing room. Fast forward one year and the French jacket is back on top of my sewing list!




This is where I left it. Bodice seams were closed, sleeves cut and ready to be constructed. Once that's done it will be time to make a few design choices. I'm considering several neckline options and I'm still not sure whether I want patch pockets or not. Whenever I'm thinking about the different options I feel like I can't choose properly without envisioning the overall picture. And for that I definitely need to decide on the trim.

The jacket may have been out of sight for fifteen months, it was often on my mind. I experimented with the selvedges, used different fibers for crochet and visited haberdashery shops during the quest for the perfect trim. Wherever I went, from Amsterdam, Rotterdam and Utrecht to Liege, Edinburgh, Prague and Bratislava, I always had a quilted square of boucle in my handbag. No luck. Navy looked boring, white was either too white or too yellow-ish, mixing navy and white resulted in a overly classic look. If only I had enough fabric left to make fringe!

The more I thought about it, the more I realised I'm probably more in love with the lining than with the main fabric. And then I remembered the Chanel ensemble I admired two years ago at an exhibition in The Hague.






What if  I incorporated a tiny strip of that colourful lining in a trim? My fabric isn't as loosely woven as the example fabric, maybe layering will work?

Since last week my options doubled. Can you believe my luck when I unexpectedly stumbled upon a bolt of the same boucle? I had last seen that fabric for sale in 2014 and back then it sold out fast. I quickly bought enough to start experimenting with fringing bias strips as well!

Lots of things to try out during the upcoming long weekend!

17 comments:

  1. Sounds like you have some very creative ideas bubbling away. Both fabrics are gorgeous and this will be a stunning jacket. So looking forward to seeing what you decide on.

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    1. So far, so good. It looks like my plans are working, but of course I picked the most labour-intensive idea of the lot ;) Hope to be able to show something in a few days time!

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  2. I can see why you are so in love with the lining of your jacket, it is gorgeous. The photograph is a fabulous piece of inspiration to help you decide how to incorporate some of the lining to finish the main body of the jacket. Isn't that the beauty of sewing your own clothes? You can make them exactly as you want them.

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    1. I couldn't agree more! That's why I like to make coats and jackets, so many options to add your own twist!

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    1. Still hope one day it will be a stunning jacket.....It's been a WIP for far too long!

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  4. Options and inspiration - a winning combination which should serve you well as you make decisions on your jacket. It's going to be lovely, and I am already looking forward to seeing it completed!

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    1. Oh, I'm so happy the inspiration is back!

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  5. I wondered what happened to this - having got to this stage, it certainly is calling out to be finished. Blue can be quite tricky to match - so many shade variations.

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    1. Now you know! Nothing happened :) It is indeed calling out to be finished, but I estimate with all the hand sewing it will take another 40 hours. That's 5-8 weeks from now, assuming I won't be distracted...

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  6. Whatever you do to finish this little French jacket, I know it will be stunning. I hope all your creative decisions work well for you.

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    1. I hope so too, Marjorie! So far the trim is coming together very nicely.

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  7. Keep sharing more informative posts like that,
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  8. I agree that the trim can be the most difficult part. Most ready made choices just don't look right. I would up making my own using bias strips of the fabric along with some narrow braid. I'm looking forward to seeing what you create.

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    1. That would have been my first choice, Mary. When I opened the box where my jacket had been hiding for fifteen months I discovered I only had two long strips of about 7 cm wide left. Not much to work with! What was I thinking? Post about plan B will be up soon.

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  9. This sounds like a great idea! thanks for sharing. I will try it out next time!sewing patterns

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  10. Fabulous tip, I will definitely be doing this sewing patterns in future.

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