At the top of the order is my pattern repeat, the Jacket Express. This is a jacket pattern from Islander patterns that is included in the Craftsy Class: Sew Better, Sew Faster: Garment Industry Secrets.
You may recall I made this previously, here is a link to that post which has a lot of info on making this jacket. This is a pattern that is included in the Craftsy Class: Sew Better, Sew Faster: Garment Industry Secrets. It is from Islander Patterns. I made it from a red denim that I found somewhere and it turned out to be something I wear ALL the time, as it helps to avoid the dreaded denim jumpsuit look (blue denim jeans + denim jacket = bad 80's music video or something equally hideous). The red in this jacket is just washed out enough to make it a very versatile neutral.
Also hideous, the versions on the pattern packaging. Anyway - if you are interested in the sewing details - and there are quite a few - in my previous post, here is the link. Also I wrote a second post reviewing the Craftsy class which has other sewing details and some more pictures so here is that link.
Sometimes I just decide to swing away and make something even though I have a zillion other things I could be doing. But this jacket was on my mind, as I am going to make a similar jacket for my mom, from that pineapple denim I bought from Girl Charlee (visible in this post). So I made a test version in her size of this Islander jacket. And she didn't like the way it fit and felt. So I tried to adjust it but wasn't getting anywhere. Then she pulled a cute denim jacket out of her closet and said "I like everything about this one, can't you just make it exactly like this?" Yeeessss I can....by spending a good chunk of time (it takes me about 2 hours) making a copy pattern, then sewing up a test version just to check. So that is done and soon I will start on her jacket. But meanwhile, back to mine. I wanted to try it out in stretch woven. This pattern and the instructor are VERY specific, in fact adamant - insistent - demanding that it be made in a regular woven. So phooey with that. Stretch is the way to go. I love stretch wovens such as cotton sateen or wool with lycra (although I am not a fan of ponte knits, although I guess they are in fact, knits! but they seem like wovens to the touch. I digress) So I had this rather thick cotton sateen that was never going to be a dress as it is just slightly too heavy so perfect for a jacket. And you know I cannot resist that color.
It looks a bit rumply here but quite wearable. And pointless to iron (when finished) since it is cotton with lycra, so just go where the fabric takes you. Pressing as you sew - that is quite necessary. After all that topstitching will not be in the right place without nicely pressed seams.
Side view. All in all I consider this turned out well, maybe not one of my home runs but perhaps a good double or RBI. It was easier to sew in the non-stretch denim and that pressed perfectly, was a bit easier to topstitch but all in all this is done. You can see I left off the buttons on the upper pockets. Gave it just a little too much of the chest headlight effect. I did narrow this version at the side seams by taking it in at the waist, about 1 inch on each side, it seemed to need a more fitted look than the red one.
And here is a little warning, check your work before proceeding to the next step. This jacket is a topstitching bonanza, and if you do the topstitching on one sleeve but not the other and sew them both then you will have to rumple up the sleeve and squish all that fabric under the presser foot in order to do it. NOT my most favorite thing to do. Gnashing of teeth at this point. Oh well. Got it done. Who knows what I am talking about?
Now for Jacket # 2. Almost in the same color, but not quite. Also in stretch although this one is denim. Fabric I bought at Piedmont fabrics maybe 3 years ago, not sure why. I was with a friend. Peer pressure :)
Not bad but this is the one with the problem. I freely admit that this is a case of hasty sewing. Actually, hasty cutting. Last summer I thought I would squeeze out this jacket just before vacation, easy peasy, right? Using my self-made pattern blogged about here. And it would have been perfect, but for one little problem. I put the stretch going up and down instead of around the body. And after I had it about 80% cut out, I thought "this seems strange" and then snap! realized and I was SO mad. So I shoved the pattern pieces in a bin and left on vacay. Returned and sewed it up as I don't like unfinished stuff hanging around. It is really cute but slightly uncomfortable. Restrictive in the shoulders and arms. Fine if I walk around with perfect posture but not so great for actual living. Although this denim is stretchy enough that even though the stretch goes up and down it does give a little with movement. Can you tell that it is starting to grow on me?
Looking at this picture I think the buttons are slightly in the wrong spots or sewn on too tightly but I will never button it up so screw it, they are staying that way. Also the upper pockets are not there, I just put the flaps. The lower pockets are real, and I did put some interfacing as they are welt pockets under the flaps so need a bit of help.
Even though these two jackets are similar in color I can see they are quite different in style so I will probably wear the first one with denim skirts or pants and the second one might be nice with a dress. For me in the summer a jacket like this is just something to carry along in case the air conditioning is overwhelming (which to me it always is).
Now to compare and contrast: Jacket Express
and denim jacket pattern made by me.
That denim skirt I am wearing in all the pictures is Simplicity 2152 which I wear all the time in the summer. The knit top is Simplicity 1916 pictured here.
So maybe I have scored a run or two with these jackets. And you know I have many, many, many items in my wardrobe that complement these colors so no problems there!
Perhaps a quick palate cleanser is in order, a knit top or pair of shorts, since summer has tentatively arrived here (finally - such a weird spring). Something I can call a home run.
In any case, no more jackets for me for a while. Ok, how many baseball references did you count? I think eight. For any overseas readers - yes, baseball and American english, kind of unintelligible, I know. My European friends who have lived here always remark on this very confusing habit we have of using baseball metaphors in so many conversations. Don't worry - soccer is taking over the world (or has done) and we will have to learn all the soccer references soon enough.
Happy weekend sewing, Beth
Today's garden photo is the foxgloves which live at the shady edge of the garden. You can just see them in the first photo above. You don't see them very often here in my hot locale but they seem so cottage-garden to me and I am happy I found a spot for them under the pink jasmine. Plus they seems to come back 2nd and 3rd years so you know I like that - plant repeats and pattern repeats