Friday, August 16, 2013

Sewing Detour for the Jacket Express

Sewing blogs are like a wonderful magazine subscription that magically appears every morning, something to dip into with my coffee and blueberry muffins. The other day I thought, where are the new posts from my favorites? It must be summer vacation time and the posts are getting a bit less frequent.  Perhaps a bit of a summer blogging slump going around. Then I looked at the date of my last post and realized it was more than two weeks ago. So guilty as charged, with my own lack of contribution to the sewing blogosphere. Despite the minimal blogging I have been sewing like mad, doing some stuff for sewing clients as well as playing around with some ideas for knit t-shirts that may come to nothing.

However I did take a detour from my July plans when I saw the "Sew Better, Sew Faster: Garment Industry Secrets" Craftsy class taught by Janet Pray of Islander Sewing Systems. Who doesn't want to sew better? I always figure if I learn a few tips or new to me ideas then books, classes etc are worth the investment. In this case I would say I did learn a few things and she has a very nice teaching style. Also I wanted to get the pattern which is included because I knew that it would be perfect for my mom as she loves this type of casual jacket.

The pattern comes in size XS - 5X and the measurements don't really correspond to any other pattern companies so I decided to make a version for myself to check the sizing AND test how "Express" it was using the techniques from the class.

Red denim jacket front

I made the size Small which is mostly roomy all over. I probably could have made the XS and then just added a little at side seam hip. The style is very boxy and not really to my taste but now I have to confess that I have worn this so many times in the last few weeks. Probably because it is not blue! It is just the thing to wear with a blue denim skirt (as opposed to my dark blue denim jacket which I love but looks weirdly suit-ish when worn with a denim skirt) Also it is...gasp...very comfortable! 
The fabric is kind of odd but ideal for this jacket. Not something I would have picked out in the store, but I bought a great big piece of it at a thrift/antique/junk shop that was liquidating for a move. Got all kinds of good stuff that day for about $ 10 so of course I like this result even more.  This photo below is a better representation of the color and you can see all the topstitching which I did in white because I am lazy and didn't want to change the thread in the machine. 

Red denim jacket close up front

So how Express was this jacket? From cutting out to sewing on buttons it was 9 hours. I am not sure that is so speedy, I guess considering it has 2 welt pockets and 2 other hidden pockets plus collar and cuffs and plenty of topstitching it is OK. 

Why I shoved my hands in the pockets and buttoned up the front I do not know, but you can see the shape here. 
Red denim front on me

And for comic relief I include this picture below. Now you can see why I have the sleeve cuffs rolled up. Yes, I should have checked the sleeve length but it did not occur to me at the time. Oh well. 

red denim sleeves on me

To be continued in another post with some further details on this jacket and the Craftsy class. 

I hope all your sewing detours turn out well, Beth


Now it's time for the most summery of summer garden flowers. Grown from random seeds and I always love it when one of these bi-color ones pop out with a touch of red. 

sunflower

21 comments:

  1. Very nice and the red was a great choice.

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  2. I've begun watching this class, but haven't been sewing along. Your jacket looks nice (with the sleeves rolled up :) ) Really a good combo with the jeans skirt!

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  3. Your jacket looks great, and so well made. Beautiful topstitching!

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  4. very great jaccket, love the color and top stitching! it is a little roomy on the sleeves, could that be altered quickly?

    i agree :) i love seeing finished projects from people and havent been getting enough! :)

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  5. Now my mind is on to jackets! The sunflower is lovely too...

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  6. Your jacket looks great! I watched the entire class, all 3.5 hours of it, and took lots and lots of video notes. I'm going to the ASE at the end of Sept and have been thinking this might be my post-Labor Day project so I can show it to Janet in person. If it took you 9 hours it would probably take me 18 to sew, plus another two for cutting and marking and ironing on the interfacing (though I'm really surprised one of her tips wasn't about block fusing a piece of fabric and cutting the pieces directly out of that instead of cutting each piece out of fabric and interfacing and then fusing them together like she does. I really like the contrast topstitching--if you're going to do all that work, why not show it off? I too was thinking that the fit is kind of boxy and now I know to check for sleeve length too. OH, and I bought the point presser and the chakoner because of her recommendation. I'm eager to try them out!

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    1. oops ... not only am I spending time on the internet when I really meant to be sewing, I am nerding out and using HTML to add emphasis. OK, back to my sewing room!! The jacket is super cute and I bet your mom will love it.

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  8. Sewing blogs are like a wonderful magazine subscription that magically appears every morning, something to dip into with my coffee and blueberry muffins




    Isn't that the truth!




    cute jacket, too!

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  9. Very cute jacket, Beth! I agree, a blue denim jacket can be limiting if you wear blue denim jeans. I love your pop of color!

    Surely I've been putting out lots of finished projects recently. ;)

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    1. Yes you have! Ok, you called me on that one and you are one of my fav bloggers so I appreciate all the posts. plus enjoy the SF weather report, as I sit on my patio wearing shorts and a T, drinking coffee and seeing all your new coats with the fog swirling about. eek, coats in August.....

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  10. I think this is a wonderful casual look on you! I have a jacket planned in that soft brick red also, though mine is roomier.

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  11. Love that color, Beth!! Can't wait to read your review on the class.

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  12. I love the contrast topstitching - don't tell me that had anything to do with laziness, it looks very thoughtful and deliberate. Nine hours, my word, I would kill for that kind of speed! LOL. I've been working on leggings for my 3 daughters, these are the kind with no side seams (just 2 pieces per pair, plus elastic and hem), and I've now spent at least 3 hours on them, or 4 if you include tracing and cutting. Probably will need at least 1-2 more to finish. In the meantime, I will enjoy watching you and others rip through projects lickety-split!

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  13. Really interesting reading your review of this ! Would you say you learned anything from it? I know your repertoire of skills is pretty extensive! I am tempted by the jacket & I love the fabric you've chosen - looks soft & chic & very wearable.

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  14. I love a good jacket.
    You look cute in the long sleeves pic.

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  15. Your jacket looks great, a really nice fun and casual style and I love the hands in pockets picture of course!! This is how I would wear it 99% of the time! I love the colour on you too. Funny about the sleeves, I have the exact opposite problem with my makes :)

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  16. Great jacket, Beth! The Craftsy class appears worthwhile.

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  17. It looks so sharp with the topstitching! I think denim jackets are supposed to be a bit boxy--the style looks spot on.

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  18. I like the jacket and the sleeves cuffed. If you hadn't shown it, no one would have known! Glad to know the Craftsy class was good...maybe I'll add it to my list!

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