Monday, September 26, 2011

Tartan jacket

Burda 05-2009-112

The back, with the box pleat and the elasticated sleeve band, are really nice features I think.

Although I really liked my twist bubble skirt I could see it wasn't working for me. Fortunately the pleats used a lot of fabric which was easy to repurpose.

I saw a very funky outfit in a cafe recently - a simple skirt and top with a gorgeous plaid jacket and a hand crocheted scarf and suddenly I really wanted a plaid jacket.

I was a little hesitant about the style on me since the line under the bust and the bold fabric are what my husband calls "brave design decisions."

I liked this pattern because it was made of lots of small pieces so I could use the skirt pieces running with the grain and I had enough scraps left to cut out the bottom half and match the side check too. I couldn't do anything really clever with the other bits because I didn't have enough fabric, and I am a little relieved about that because plaid matching is something that makes me cross-eyed.

And who can argue with those "eat all you like" tummy pleats? Definitely a jacket for a night out.

I made some important "learning experiences" with this jacket which I want to share with you so you too can *learn*.

I put in one of the welts back to front, ripped it out, and then reinserted it upside down! Third time I got it right, but I had damaged the fabric quite a lot with all the unpicking and resewing. The golden rule of welt sewing should be "interface under the pocket before you cut to the corner" for such eventualities - it really helps to hold the fabric together.

All in all - considering I cut and resewed it three times it doesn't look too bad:

The other mistake is that I didn't read the instructions carefully enough for the front zipper. I am still kicking myself for rushing ahead without double checking - I wanted to make sure the lines across the jacket matched when the zipper was up, so I used 'steam a seam' to secure the front zipper in place. As you know, that stuff sets like concrete. Once I had steamed it in, there is no moving that zipper. Imagine my horror on realising that by attaching the front 1 cm back from the teeth that I had inadvertently increased the front by a size!

The whole point was to make it so fitted through and under the bust to avoid that 'puppies in a sack' look!

And no way to fix it! In the end, I took in the side seams which in itself was no easy task since the under bust bias strip is attached over the top, meaning I had to resew it as well.

But I am really pleased with the end result. I really like my jacket - while not the most flattering shape for me, I think it works well enough. It also adds a nice layer of warmth for our blustery spring days.

I hope to manage one more "selvage/salvage" (thank you Carolyn) project for September, and then it's time to welcome "outfits October!"


  1. How fun to see your version of this pattern. I like it much better in a jacket-weight fabric. I actually think the style is good on you.

  2. I have always liked navy and green plaid. This jacket is awesome. I love the unique design and you did a fantastic job persevering through your challenges. I agree with Joy and Belinda, this style looks good on you!

  3. Wow, that pattern really does look like the opposite of the "it's so easy" pattern I'm sewing at the moment, i.e., IT'S SO HARD! I liked the skirt but actually I like this jacket better. It has hints of 'old man', in the nicest possible way of course.

  4. It is lovely! And I hope I didn't offend you with my comment... I'm sorry if you were. I certainly didn't intend to.

  5. I like this tartan, and I think the pattern shows to better effect in the jacket. I would hate to have to pattern match with repurposed fabric, I need lots of extra for this sort of thing.
    I admire your perseverence. The unpicking and resewing sounds faintly nightmarish, but the finished jacket shows no sign of its construction troubles, very sharp.

  6. Another fabulous jacket creation! It sounds like a lot of work, especially considering you had to make it up into a skirt first. I really love this jacket and think that it is a much more flattering garment than the twist bubble skirt. I am trying to clear my wardrobe of all those garments that I lovingly made but do not flatter me (though admitting that they don't flatter seems to be the hardest step). And I have to confess...I still have never made a proper welt pocket, so as always, am in awe of yours.

  7. I have to say I love this! Probably for all the wrong reasons, too. It reminds me of a cross between a girl's school uniform and the uniform tops that aestheticians wear (not that I get many manicures in life, but hey ho.) There is sort of a funky-functional-traditional thing going on here. It just looks like so much fun to wear and it seems to me that it would go with just about anything too.

  8. Fabulous! And I hope you don't mind my saying so, much better than the skirt. Smashing job on the matching checks, but the painful pocket doesn't look hacked at all. And I don't see why you say the waist is too high - what looks bad is a too-high waist going over the bust. One so well handled, right in the proper place, looks perfect, and imho suits you well.

  9. Your jacket is terrific. I like the styling and the details.

  10. I love this jacket! I think it looks great on you! I actually made a muslin of this last month. I have fabric all picked out for it, but I haven't started because I haven't been able to find the right zipper. After seeing your jacket, I'm going to look some more this weekend!

  11. I like this much better than the skirt and can imagine it getting a lot of wear. Your husband sounds like an astute diplomat!

  12. What a great save! Although I did like the skirt, I think the jacket is even better.

  13. I love this on you, and think it's really flattering. I can't believe you unpicked that pocket twice and came out with it still looking great!