I am super excited to make a long wool coat! Dan is skeptical that it will be enough for January in Wisconsin, but thinks it will be fine for the warmer days of winter. We shall see…
Inspired by Gertie’s lovely coat from a couple of years ago, I selected a red Itallian wool from Gorgeous Fabrics and a white with black polka dot Rayon lining.
The pattern will be Simplicity 2812, the long version with a stand colar.
The fabric is, as advertised, gorgeous. And I’m a little afraid to start cutting it. Which makes the muslin process feel more necessary (and a little less like a buzz kill). I used an old sheet for the muslin – not as heavy as the actual fabric, but it is what I have. I cut a size 14 bodice.
The first fitting made it clear that if I need a little more room in the bust. My high bust is 35″ and full bust is 38″. This is only the second FBA I’ve done, but it does seem to help the fit.
I opened up the princess seam and centered the front seam on my center (while wearing a sweater to simulate actual coat conditions) to see how much more room I needed. I measured 1 3/4 inches in the “gap”, but that seemed like too much. I don’t want it to be baggy, just want to not feel like fat guy in a little coat.
I followed Sewaholic’s FBA guidance to make a 1″ FBA, which is totally fun. Yay cutting, rotating and taping!
It ended up adding a lot of fabric to the front piece (not shown).
The book I’m using as guidance Tailoring: The Classic Guide to Sewing the Perfect Jacket indicated that you should be able to pinch 2″ of fabric in the upper arm of a coat. I could pinch about 1″, so added 1 3/4 inches to the top of the arm, tapering to the wrist (I have meaty bicepts). This changes the shape of the sleeve from a tube to a taper, but I think that is going to work better for me. I also cut 2 1/2 inches off the arm length (I have short arms).
There seemed to be a big gap between my neck and the collar, so I added some fabric to the collar area of the front and back pieces. I want the collar snugger to my neck to keep out the chill, so I moved it 1/2″ closer to my neck all around. I didn’t make the corresponding shortening of the collar for the muslin, but will need to for the fabric. And then I tried it on with a hooded sweater to make it hard to see how the collar was fitting. Der.
The Second Fitting. I think the fit across the bust is better. But I’m afraid it is a little too roomy in the waist. I want more taper below the bust – shouldn’t have moved that little corner pice of the side front pattern piece out so far.
The Third Fitting. In Version 3 I took in a little at the back and front princess seams. Hopefully this is the last muslin!
I’m not too worried about the wrinkles – I didn’t use shoulder pads for the fitting – those should help some, as should the thicker fabric.
I transferred the marks from the muslin adjustments back to my copied pattern pieces for the bodice. I still need to make some notes on the skirt pieces (they’ll be taken in at the waist). I think I’m just going to cut a size 14, and then mark the new seam lines from the adjustments.
Am a little worried about steaming the wool… I steamed the heck out of a swatch before attaching the fusible interfacing, and it still seemed to shrink a little when ironed with a press cloth. Hmm…