Having wished for a sherpa suede coat for ages..... I finally made myself one using McCall's Pattern Easy Stitch 'n Save M9097.
Living in a small rural town, I am so grateful our local WalMart has a small pattern, fabric and notions department. Their pattern kiosk recently switched to these $4.97 McCall's Easy stitch 'n save patterns. For a while it was all NewLook Patterns.... which were all well and good, but it's nice to have access to the ever popular McCall's Pattern brand at a reasonable price. Hmm, for some reason this pattern is not showing up in the McCall Pattern Company website so I don't know if maybe it's exclusive to WalMart, but I cannot find anything to link to.
The full-length coat, view B, out of sherpa/suede immediately caught my eye and I knew that was 'the one'.
Ever since Carolyn
made her gorgeous shearling jacket in 2016, I've been wanting one too and hers was a big factor in choosing this luscious chocolate brown faux suede/Sherpa at my nearby JoAnn Fabric Store
. It was a hard decision because they also carried the same tan Sherpa/suede that the model is wearing above. I took care in choosing this particular suede/sherpa fabric as I wanted something substantial, not too drapey and thin. The fabric care instructions read that it is machine washable on cold, line dry.... but I have not washed this yet. I picked up 3 yards on sale at $15/yard and have enough left over to make a vest.
Following Carolyn's lead on her coat to make sleeve cuffs, I also extended the sleeves by 3" flaring out ever so slightly to be able to simply turn back to make a 'cuff', then sewed down over the sleeve seam to keep it all in place.
Loving the way the exposed Sherpa on the overlapped seam looked on the pattern envelope's front, but neglecting to read the pattern all the way through..... you would not believe how much time was spent researching how to get that overlapped exposed Sherpa seam 'look'. Many samples were sewn, a few shown below, before all were thrown into one big pile after a while. The photo below was a late night iPhone photo with not-too-great lighting as I wanted a visual on this process!
Then, and only then did I read my pattern instructions and it was all there! You can see how the illustration shows how to overlap the seam and sew on the top layer's seamline. I made it easy on myself by figuring out how to mark the suede to make the overlap easier. Click on the photo to enlarge to read my notes if interested as there is no way a person could simply overlap seamlines without some sort of guiding point. So easy after this point and the coat sewed up quickly.....
.....except I decided to sew all semi-flat-felled seams and top-stitch everywhere. By semi-flat-felled seam..... I mean that I sewed a traditional 5/8" seam, cut the back of the excess of one of the seam allowances off.... like you would for a flat-felled seam..... but instead of wrapping that piece, I simply laid the seam flat and top-stitched it down. This fabric is too bulky to 'wrap' and by sewing it flat, it flattened all the interior seams out to be able to wear the coat comfortably and finish everything off in a nice way.
My walking foot worked perfectly on this fabric no matter which side of the fabric was 'up' or 'down'. This also meant the 'quick and easy sew' took a little longer than intended. But that's okay as these are what makes wearing the garment more enjoyable to wear..... with all the little finishing details done.
The back of the pattern envelope reads 'Semi-fitted jackets have bust and shoulder darts, front extends to form collar and full length sleeves'. Yes, this is definitely a semi-fitted jacket/coat and the heaviest top I can wear underneath is a turtleneck. With no cardi. But I knew this when I bought the pattern and that is what I wanted. And you guys will be so glad to know the perfectionist me did not fret all these darts in this type of material at all..... I simply measured as best I could, eye-balled, and sewed! Surprised even myself and all the darts turned out beautiful. Even the sleeves have darts.
The pattern made the neatest 'collar'! Love this!
You can see the back neckline a little better here and how the 'collar' forms. Clever.
And speaking of the back, I wasn't too keen on the way the back looked after sewing the overlapped exposed Sherpa seam, photo below....
.....so that got ripped out and a regular right sides together seam, semi-flat-felled was put in with the same top-stitching used throughout. I like this better for me.
Again, using Carolyn's beautiful coat as inspiration, I made a matching belt, but found it was too much with all my horizontal exposed seams.
So the belt got ditched and buttons were sewed on covering snaps because this girl was too chicken to cut into my fabric to make a buttonhole. I shamelessly copied VelvetRibbon
and Coco's Loft
recent beautiful coats where they both used snaps covered with buttons. ;)
Both the snaps...
.....and buttons came from WalMart. The button is 1 1/2" Coconut and I didn't realize until I got home that all three buttons are completely different. We shall call this a design feature. I may add one more button later.
I cut an XS at the bust grading to a S from waist and hip on, and when I ripped the center back seam out, I also took in a big chunk from the neckline to the first horizontal seam. This made the coat fit a little more streamlined on me and not quite so 'hunchbacked' looking... feeling?! This pattern has no pockets and I've toyed with adding patch pockets but right now am wearing it this way. Kind of afraid the pockets will detract from all the horizontal lines going on.
I haven't had the time to pull my plans together, but this coat completes the Make a Garment a Month January 2018 theme. Starting out the year on track! Yes!
This morning was one of those beautiful South Carolina blue-sky days, but v-v-v-ery cold. Okay, v-v-v-ery cold for us here, maybe not so cold compared to my more northern friends! :) My new coat kept me warm. And for some reason even Buster wanted in on the photos. Silly cat.
Happy Sewing Everyone! :)
What a beautiful coat, Lisa! I loved reading about all your thoughts and changes you have made to achieve such a good result! I agree that the flat felled vertical back seam looks better. Thank you for sharing all the details. Those semi-flat-felled seams are useful for felt, too. You are well warm in this shearling coat!ReplyDelete
Oh I shall remember your suggestion whenever sewing on felt! Thank you SaSa! :)Delete
Very pretty! I know it's warm too, I made one back in December.ReplyDelete
Thank you so much! You coat is gorgeous!!! :)Delete
This is gorgeous! I will definitely look for that pattern. It's nice to know where to purchase it and where to find this gorgeous fabric as well.ReplyDelete
Thank you! Look forward to seeing what you make! :)Delete
Enjoyed reading every bit of this! I like your colour choice of the brown and your added cuffs. Loved the photo of the inside too! It's so neat! Did you use a different colour thread for the outside and the bobbin? Or is the pile so deep that the brown thread doesn't show on the inside at all?ReplyDelete
Thank you so much for your lovely feedback. The only place I used different colored threads was when I sewed the sleeve cuffs in place.... and even then it wasn't necessary as the pile was so deep the thread is hidden well. :)Delete
that is so nice, love it.ReplyDelete
Thank you so much Beth! :)Delete
No one would ever guess that coat wasn't professionally made. Like the vertical line of the back seam very much. And, yes, I really like the collar on it, too. Different but so stylish.ReplyDelete
With his coloring Buster could snuggle into all those leaves and never be found again!
Thank you so much Mama Pea! The design of collar was a new one to me but find it wears quite well as my purse doesn't catch on anything when I sling it over my shoulder. And yes! There's been many a time I thought our land had grown a new 'rock' only to find Buster was asleep! :)Delete
I really enjoyed every bit of your post too! Reading how your creative process unfolded, your initial inspiration and finding just the right pattern and fabric...and ta da! A beautiful coat. I love that collar too - so cleverly done and your flat fell seams with some of the white furry lining showing. It's a coat you'll wear for many years.ReplyDelete
Thank you so much Kathleen! I certainly hope so!! :)Delete
A beautiful coat Lisa, and I enjoyed reading about your process. Love how you finished off the seams.ReplyDelete
Thank you so much Jean! :)Delete
This is a perfect MAGAM make. I love the collar on this coat and I suspect that the quality of your shearling is better than I can buy at home. This is going to be in constant rotation for the winter!ReplyDelete
Thank you so much Sue! On those really cold days, this is the fabric to wear! And I will be copying your oh-so-cute shearling vest (hopefully!) soon!! :)Delete
What a lovely coat! And soooo neat! Thank you for your detailed description of the process, I'm sure I will someday copy the button over snap idea :)ReplyDelete
Thank you so much Katharina! The button over snap is a great idea if one is a little concerned about cutting into fabric, like I was..... but in reality it was one big pain in the you-know-what as it's just tricky to sew those snaps in place directly over the button. I am finding I do like it though, as in wearing. I thought I might not like the way you could still 'see' the snaps. :)Delete
The coat looks warm and lovely. I love your fabric choice and the matching buttons too. It's really good for cold weather.ReplyDelete
Thank you so much sweet Eli! :)Delete
It's beautiful. This richer colour was definitely the right choice! And Buster wanted in on the photos cos his coat is similar! And buttons covering snaps is always the way to go with these sort of fabrics. I'm glad this worked out for you, you were a little anxious about sewing this fabric :)ReplyDelete