Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Vogue 1143 Jacket, Construction Notes part 1

This project, Vogue 1143 has veered perilously near to becoming a UFO - unfinished object.  I started this project back in Jan. 2012 when I rashly offered to sew a Vogue designer pattern chosen by a reader of my blog.  There were times when I thought "be careful what you wish for...or ask for" since the pattern has some real quirks that were quite confounding.  I am glad I persevered and now have it finished.  Even the matching pants, although I used a different pattern for those.  Photos have been taken and I didn't like the length of the pants so I am rehemming, (my pal Alice said it looked like I have no feet - so retake soon.)

A look at the pattern envelope and the technical drawing which commenter Becki-c wanted to see.

 V1143 pattern envelopeVogue 1143 technical drawing
It is a pattern with a LOT of pieces and definitely some work to alter for fit if the jacket pattern is not a good match for your measurements.  I made my typical Vogue size 12 which was good in the waist and hip, if anything I think I could have gone down a size and felt a bit better in the finished jacket across the shoulders and the waist. 

If I could sum this jacket up in one word I would say "Fussy".  By that I mean very fiddly sewing, lots of angles, an underarm gusset, and double layer sleeves that I had to do some maneuvers to get to a wearable version.  Fussy for the wearing also, because it is a jacket that looks best when worn closed, with a belt, so not an easy breezy casual jacket by any means and the lapel turnback is a bit vague as well.

This pattern has a Vogue rating of Advanced-Plus Difficile and I agree.  Two things to note, I didn't make a muslin, I figured if I was going to sew all those darn pieces I only wanted to do it once ☺ and secondly I actually followed the pattern instructions to the letter, mostly because they were the only reasonable way to construct this jacket due to the attached peplum.

Here is a look at the jacket once assembled, minus the sleeve lower portion. The fabric I used was a "denim-look" stretch woven, 73% poly, 25% rayon, 2% spandex, purchased at the big chain store with a half-off coupon so cost of materials about $ 25.  A lucky random choice as it had just the right weight and stretch, and pressed very well.


Here is the start of the "advanced" construction, the underarm sleeve gusset insertion. Any pattern with a gusset and/or one that says "slash"  always gives me pause. Left photo is the sewn on bias square which serves to reinforce the gusset inside corner and create seam allowance where it gets too narrow at the corner to sew.

                  Grey Vogue Jacket bias square1Grey vogue suit bias square2

A look at the underarm with gusset inserted. I put the pattern piece below on the side seam so you can see how that shape fits into the area.  At the two upper corners of the sewn-in gusset you can see the bias squares which are reinforcing the corners.  This is a detail (underarm gusset) you see on a few designer pattern and also on some vintage patterns/garments. It is one way to keep the armhole quite close to the body but allow for some range of motion. I saw this feature on Michael Kors dress I made a while ago,  posted here and here and in that  dress I got away with skipping the reinforcing square since the gusset attachment was a bit different, but on the whole a good technique to know.


When it is all stitched up it looks like this on the inside:


And this sewing took me to March 2012 when it went on this dress form and stayed there in that state for about 2 months, with everyone coming by asking what that "interesting-looking" thing was.  At that point I became very busy with other projects, the warm weather arrived and this moved from the dress form to a plastic bin with all the many pattern pieces. 

Grey Vogue suit jacket started

Next up, the pesky sleeve problems. But no fear, this story does have an end. In fact I have made a couple of  knit tops in the last few weeks, including something from Pattern Magic, finally.  

Here is today's SunnyGal garden photo, these morning glories are trailing over the fence and mingling with the pink jasmine vine. They are from my neighbor's yard and are very late this year. Talk about tough, look how the one vine has twined around the other.  

Morning glory

Happy sewing and I wish everyone lots of finished objects, Beth


  1. This Guy Laroche is stunning , but I´m so relieved I didn´t buy it. If an experienced seamtress like yourself have encountered difficulties what would have become of me! :(
    I´m so curious about the result (and then all that curiosity will turn into jealousy)

  2. What a complicated design. I give you so much credit for persevering through this project. I too cannot wait to see it all finished. I am sure it is stunning!

  3. From the design lines, I would have bought this jacket too. I hope you can work it out because the fabric is perfect for this style.

    I'll keep an eye out for your pattern magic post. I'm going to try my first one in November.

  4. This is a really appealing shape, it's going to be an amazing jacket when it's done!

  5. I can`t wait when it is finished! Thank You for the review, it is going to be gorgeous! B.r.,

  6. The gusset is interesting -- I haven't sewn one before. Can't wait to see the finished jacket as well as your Pattern Magic top!

  7. I just passed up the Burda mag Michael Kors knockoff with the gusset because I just didn't want to deal. This is a whole other level! Bravo!