Friday, February 9, 2018

Part 2: Hemisfèric Coat completed, Pauline Alice patterns

True to form, those of you who read my blog are interested seeing the insides of garments and construction details. Thanks for the nice comments on the previous post. I'm lucky to be able to pick and choose who I want to sew for, and the process of selecting patterns + fabric is maybe the most fun part of the process. That is definitely my view once I get near the end of a complex project, when the fun fades away and I just want it to be done!

This project felt that way at times, mostly because of delays with all of us getting sick after the holidays. But it's complete and it's adorable.

Coat unbuttoned view copy

Everything about this project was a time crunch, including taking the photos, so the lighting and sharpness is not quite what I would have liked and I have increased the brightness a bit so the details are visible. I made this coat for Sara, who is the daughter of my friend Heather (who I have sewn a lot of things for, including this coat). They were going to an evening wedding so Sara needed a coat, and I did sew a dress for Heather which is one of my favorite things I have done in a while, Burda 07-2017 # 124A. The dress is fantastic and I can't wait to blog about it. One thing at a time::)

I tested this Hemisfèric coat pattern for Pauline last fall. I really love her designs, Pauline Alice Patterns, and feel that she always thinks about creating a design that is unique, as in her Quart coat which I also tested and then sewed up for a friend. But she also has patterns that are for casual and fun wear as well. And now she has a book - although I think it's in French - not one of my better languages...yet.

As mentioned in my previous post, I love the shape and seaming of this coat but I just don't like separating zipper, particularly a long one on a coat front so I changed the front closure from zipper to a hidden buttonhole placket.
All the details on how I did that are in my previous post. Also lots of info on interfacing. The fabric was from Stone Mountain in Berkeley, as well as the lining.

Merlot coat front full length

Here's a good look at the shoulder and neckline seaming which is unique. I love it when garments have interesting seaming and shaping, they are more entertaining to sew, to look at, and it's nice to make something that is new to you. The sleeves are raglan with a seam along the top of the shoulder, and the whole coat front and back rise up to create the funnel neck which stands up quite well in a coating fabric like this one.

H coat side shoulder seams

And pockets of course. The pattern calls for the pockets to be in the front princess seams and with my buttonhole changes there is just enough room for them. I suppose I could have put them in the side seams but I wasn't really thinking about it. And they work fine where they are. She doesn't really have her hands far down in the pockets but there is plenty of space. This image is a bit fuzzy but she has the coat buttoned about 2/3 of the way up, so the top two buttons are open and I expect that is how it will be worn. While it looks super sharp with the top buttoned it is probably more comfortable like this.

Coat S with pockets view
coat back view1

I am still so happy with the placket! Time to confess that with the thickness of the fabric I had fears that it would be a lumpy mess, but choosing that silk charmeuse to use as the inner layers of the placket really worked out beautifully, plus it feels so luxe.

H coat close up placket view

H coat lining view

The lining is bemberg rayon also found at Stone Mountain - they have a great selection of colors.
The pattern pieces for the lining are included in the pattern and are separate pattern pieces which is very nice.

One construction photo that I didn't include in the previous post, the hem, I did lengthen this about 3 inches, and Sara is shorter than me. So this coat is short! Which I also found in the Quart coat. Anyway by adding length at the bottom I took away that shaping on each princess pattern piece which is necessary for the hem to fold up smoothly and not have excess fabric due to the angle of the seam at the fold.

H coat hem prep

So I did have to quickly stitch up and trim each seam so that it folded up without excess. In this blog post from 2014 I showed what I'm talking about. Scroll down the post for the photo with the pink and yellow lines marked on the picture.

Found the photo with the coat all buttoned up.

H coat buttoned up

Quick reminder, this is the pattern drawing and an example from the website.

Pauline Alice Pattern view Hemesferic Coat

Coat unbuttoned view square crop

So cute! One of these days I will have to make a Pauline Alice coat pattern for myself. We'll just have to see what she comes up with next year.

And sneak peek for my next post - this fantastic dress that I made for Heather. I am still raving over the quality of the blue wool crepe fabric.  Sorry for the grainy photo - it's cropped from full length one, and the light was really fading as we took the photos. But hey - it's documented and done. On to the next project!

H and S wearing wool outfits peek

What's in the works? I just finished something with mini-sequins. Easier than I imagined and kind of fun. I want to make a few pairs of jeans or pants now that I am happy with my pattern that I made via copying a RTW pair of jeans. Plus I have a lot of stuff to prep for some upcoming classes at Hello Stitch Studio.

So keeping busy here  - and now I'm off to repair some of my garden drip irrigation, because there is no rain in sight and we are getting worried about the drought again. Hope not but I think so.

Are you watching the Olympics? I am an Olympics fanatic - not that I have ever done any of those sports. Well plenty of skiing but other than that, nope. However I love watching everything and am a sucker for the human interest stories. (although no network is as good as ABC was back in the "thrill of victory, agony of defeat" days.)  But the Tara and Johnny skating coverage is very entertaining. Plus they dress  to coordinate!

Happy Sewing, Beth

Here's today's garden photo - so many daffodils already.



  1. Daffodills already! Wow I enjoy all your posts. Thank you Beth

  2. I love the coat and color - just beautiful and Sara wears it well. I have to agree with you on the Olympic coverage - ABC was the best. Sadly, we've lost the commentators/producers that made it enjoyable to watch.

  3. You did a wonderful job and you are a fantastic coat maker!

  4. I knew the coat would look even better on! Beautiful job, I look forward to seeing your friend's dress in blue.

  5. Love the coat!! Yes, I fondly remember the Jim McKay days of Olympic coverage.

  6. She looks very happy in her gorgeous new coat!

  7. You did an outstanding job on this coat. I love reading your posts. Thanks for sharing your projects with us.

  8. That is one awesome coat! Thanks for all the construction details on this and the previous post, they are very interesting. Altering the shaping for the hem is brilliant! I've done it for pants, but never thought to do it for something like this. Thanks for sharing this!

  9. So beautiful! Seeing it finished on a real person is a treat :) It is such a beautiful coat - my pattern is still on its way - France post can take a while. Thank you for posting your process with this coat - no doubt I'll be referring to it often once I begin making mine. I love Pauline Alice's designs too. I always check to see what she's up to :)

  10. What a beautiful coat Beth! I love, love, love the neckline! I haven’t made a “real coat” in years! Lots of beautiful work went into making this one and I’m sure you both are so pleased with the outcome!

  11. I don't think my daffodils are coming up this year :( I do have several lupine plants, though, from my tossing native seeds out in the fall! Anyway, this coat is stunning. I wouldn't have thought it quite so elegant from the line drawing, but the shape is perfect! Lovely color too.

  12. Absolutely beautifully constructed garments! I certainly wish I lived closer you are an excellent seamstress. Any chances of doing some on line classes? Your clients are very fortunate.

  13. Tracing patterns while watching the olympics this snowy weekend!

  14. The perfect coat in the perfect color for this young woman. She looks beautiful in it.

  15. The coat is beautiful! Lovely color and an impeccable job on that placket.

  16. What a gorgeous coat Beth! I can't decide if I like it better open or close! The hidden placket is a great addition!!

  17. Cute cute cute! It looks lovely on her. I really love the fabric choice. It's a perfect job!

  18. Lovely Sara looks great in this beautifully made coat. Everything about it is grand. It is always a treat to see the details inside and outside. Fantastic job!

  19. This is a gorgeous design in a fantastic colour and impeccably put together - you can't ask for much more than that!