I am so excited to be writing my very first blog post for White Tree Fabrics. If you have not discovered them yet then you really should take a look at their web site, the fabrics they sell are sure to makeep you fall in love with sewing all over again. The customer service too is excellent, you will not be disappointed.
The pattern is from BY HAND London and is named Victoria after the designer.
The very first thing to do when you receive your pattern is to read it. So arm yourself with a cup of tea and your newly measured statistics and read the pattern booklet from cover to cover. Only then should you consider cutting out the pattern pieces. It is vital to do this and not just assume you are a certain size, commercial patterns don't work like that. Instead choose the pattern size which most closely resembles your actual measurements.
I have chosen to work with two fabrics plus a lining
The main fabric is this simply stunning Liberty fabric, Strawberry Thief which many of you will recognise. The fabric is a beautiful Tana Lawn.
I wanted another fabric to work with it and to add a definately contrast. The one we chose ought not to work, but goodness, it really does work incredibly well.
It adds a really unusual contrast and lifts the garment.
The pattern instructions are clear and easy to follow and I had no trouble in getting started. After shrinking the fabrics I proceeded to cut the pattern out, tacked it together and tried it on. Perfect. The darts were sewn in place first, then the shoulder seams.
After I had cut out the pockets I then stitched them to the side seams of the jacket. A normal seam allowance is 5/8", but I reduced the seam when sewing to a much narrower seam sos that the pockets will, not show during wear. Stitch the side seams as usual. I overlocked the pocket bags so that they do not fray in use. Then I pressed them towards the front of the jacket.
This is the inside of the jacket showing the pockets neatly overlocked.
To make sewing seams easier I use my seam guide set at 5/8" this means that my seams are always straight and even.
Cut out the sleeve bands, collar and front bands in the contrast fabric. Fold them in half and stitch the short ends together, turn right side out and press.
The pattern does not have a lined sleeve, but I wanted to add one. The lining by the way is a poplin from White Tree Fabrics.Cut out a sleeve lining using the sleeve pattern.Stitch the sleeve and lining seams. Press.Sew the sleeve bands in place onto the main sleeve as in the instructions.Put the lining and the sleeve right sides together , the band inside, stitch the seam. Press.
Turn right sides out and press again. There you have it, a lovely lined seam!
Run gathering stitches inside the seam allowances all along the sleeve heads on all pieces. This is to help ease the sleeve into the armhole.
The finished sleeve. Ease the sleeve in place, keeping the lining free, you may think that it will never go, but believe me with patience it will. Press the sleeve a d the sleeve head.
The sleeve is now in place and hangs nicely.
Stitch the lining together, sew the darts, join the side and shoulder seams.
Stitch the short ends of the collar and bands as you did in the sleeves, stitch them in place as in the instructions. Press.
Stitch the lining in place around the armholes inside the seam allowance
Sew the bottom edges together right sides together. Pull the whole garment through one of the sleeve openings. Press
Pin the sleeve lining in place, easing it as you go. Stitch in place by hand.
And there it is finished. How easy was that? It can be worn many ways - with the collar up or down, the bands folded back on themselves or left open. It will look great with jeans or smart trousers.
This is a very versatile jacket, made special by the choice of fabrics.
I am wearing it with my jeans at the moment - the trousers are still on my cutting table!
Thank you so much to White Tree Fabrics for the fabrics and pattern and for all your help in choosing them.
The next blog shows you how I made the matching top.There was plenty of the fabric left over and I could not bear to waste it.