Thursday, May 31, 2018

Tamarack jacket test garment

I ran out of bias binding before I could finish the sleeve hems and side seams

I've been wanting a quilted jacket for some time now, and nearly bought one last year while on a family getaway in Martinborough. I didn't though, because the boy thought it was a "granny" style. I suspect he meant "Chinese granny", as this style does have a bit of the Mao jacket look about it.

That is probably why, when I decided to make the Tamarack jacket, I didn't choose an indigo blue fabric.
Please excuse the inclusion of my faux-woolly blue polka dot socks
The above is the test garment (but there is the possibility that I won't get around to making the "real" garment for a long time - that quilting takes so long and so much chalking).

I used just two fabrics rather than the standard two fabric layers plus an insulation layer. The facing layer is a cotton poplin quilting fabric that was on sale at my local sewing, quilting and knitting shop. It's got variable brown polka dots on a black background and makes me think of a crowd of planets.

The backing layer is actually from the boy's old grey sweatshirt which I had originally intended to use to make a sweater dress. Using this meant that I didnt have quite enough meterage to make the jacket or sleeves quite as long as I wanted - but actually the length is fine on me (high- to mid- hip length). The sleeves are definitely a bit short though, and I'm considering adding some "cuffs" to lengthen them.

According to the instructions I am in between a size 10 and a size 12. The dimensions of the size 12 garment looked like it would be too wide on me, so I made a 10. Now that it's almost finished (I ran out of bias binding so didn't get the sleeves finished just yet), width-wise there is plenty of room around the torso but not a lot of ease around the armcye.

So for my next version I may try either going up to size 12, or doing a 12 around the armcye and a 10 everywhere else.  

2 Possible user errors
I had never attempted a welt pocket before but was confident the instructions would be so good that I wouldn't need to do a practice on on scrap fabric. My first pocket was a disaster - the slash I made was about one inch wider - on each side - than the welt! I then re-measured the marking on the pattern versus the marking I'd made on the jacket but they match, so I don't know what happened there. For the second pocket I did not sew the rectangle according to the markings but instead based it on the width of the welt. This worked and the resulting welt pocket is something I'm not at all embarrassed for people to see.

The sleeve was also somehow much wider than the jacket armcye, so I just made sure the top of the sleeve lined up with the shoulder seam and trimmed off the excess at either side. This might be why the finished jacket was relatively tight around there, so maybe I traced the wrong lines in that area (on front and back pieces)!

Anyway, once I have finished binding the sleeves and washed all of the chalk lines off it (and sewn in some hook and eye closures) I will be happy to wear it around, outside the house even.

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