Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Double Sided Wool Jacket

Happy Thanksgiving Eve, to those of you who celebrate the U.S. holiday.

I am as happy as a pig in slop to be at the beginning of a 5-day vacation! Not to mention that DD2 returned last night from university in Minnesota. As soon as she got off the plane, she was waxing about the joys of feeling warm air all around your body. I don't think of San Francisco as being "warm" much of the time, but it just goes to show how it's all relative. Though I think you can see that she is not unhappy with her new Joan of Arctic boots from Sorel.

Back in Minnesota... (where it's been snowing already)

If you follow the Britex blog, you'll see that I've completed another project, my last one for 2014. This time, I started with a 100% wool from the Mid/Light Weight category:

Midweight Reversible Navy & Teal Wool

In the description, they call this a "midweight reversible wool", but I would characterize it as more lightweight. I love reversible fabrics, and I love navy and teal—I've been sewing more with these colors lately—so I jumped on this fabric almost immediately.

Some of my pics show the teal side as more of a blue teal, but it is more of a green teal, as shown in the photo on the Britex site.

This is one gorgeous fabric. I machine washed and dried a sample: It did not change character or hand. It might have shrunk a bit—I didn't think to check. The sample did fray beautifully, which surprised me, as the fabric was not particularly ravel-y to begin with. But I made sure that I serged the edges of the yardage before subjecting it to the washer and dryer, as I was not going for a frayed-edge look this time.

I found this fabric very easy to sew and wanted to make use of the fact that it was reversible. There is no pattern available for this jacket, as I used a pattern, borrowed from a friend, that was traced off of an actual Issey Miyake Plantation jacket from the early 1990s.

Single welt pockets. The sleeves fold back to reveal the teal.

I love Issey Miyake designs, but they don't always love me. The original jacket was rather boxy, long, with dropped sleeves, and no internal seaming, other than the shoulders. (In other words, the original jacket had the loose fit with dropped sleeves typical of that time.) It features a "fold back", soft lapel—finished with mitered edges—that is sewn into the shoulder seam. This fold-back lapel is my favorite feature of the design.

I made lots of changes to the original pattern. I added center back and side seams, and introduced some shaping in those seams. I reshaped the armscye and swapped in another sleeve that has a more traditional sleeve cap. This turned out to be tricky, as I muslined the sleeve at least 5 times and I think it could use more tinkering.

I reshaped the hem—it's shorter in back, but dips to the original length in front. I re-shaped the front lapel, narrowing it so that I could raise the armscye—I also changed the angle of the lapel so that it "broke" (turned back) in a more flattering (lower down) location, creating a more vertical line.

The side seams, CB seam, and sleeve seams are flat felled

Don't you just love flat felling the seam on a one-piece sleeve?

Yes, that was sarcasm. ;)

I swapped out the welt pockets for my own welt pocket, as I no longer had the room to accommodate the original vertical, two-lipped, welt pocket with a large, very Miyake, pocket bag.

So, yes, this one required a lot of changes!


This was a fun (and challenging) exercise! I do think I will use this lapel again, but I might just transfer it onto another TnT (tried 'n true) pattern. And I highly recommend this beautiful fabric!

Thanks to Britex for providing the fabric and thread!

And thanks to mem for taking these pics!