Thursday, November 20, 2008

Coat Progress Report

Yes, I'm back to working on my coat, although it's been a harrowing process, and although life has definitely gotten in the way, I will finish this.

I've been somehow unwilling to take the next steps with it, and I finally decided that it's because I don't like the extra I added to the front per Roberta Carr's instructions. After careful looking, pinning and checking of both the muslin version and the actual coat in process, I've decided to cut off the extra and go with the original Marfy drafting. I don't know why I thought I should try to improve on them, they obviously know more than I do. Why did I not listen to Ann Rowley, who some time ago very kindly noted that this was NOT the way coats were done anywhere she's been. They always tape the edge and pull up on the tape if it wants to swing open. After my testing, I suspect that Marfy has already taken the whole issue into account somewhat anyway. So, as usual, I make work for myself that I don't need.

Part of this epiphany came about after I pulled out my corduroy/suedecloth Marfy carcoat I made last year and thought about it as I wore it. It's about the same circumference or narrower than the cashmere, and seems to be fine, even though I whacked it off shorter than designed. I had forgotten how much I like it until I put it on again. I do wish I had done padstitching in the lapels, but I didn't really know enough I guess. I'm now wondering if I could do a little remedial stitching invisibly through the back of the lapels and get results. Any opinions, or even the voice of experience? I'd love to know.

I also have been working on cutting the patch pockets and flaps, and realized quickly that I really can't match the pattern perfectly since there's a dart that ends below the top of the pocket. So, I'm going to match the front and lower edges of the pocket and match the flap to the pocket and call it good. As busy as the pattern is, I think that will be fine. I only get one chance with this since the repeat is large, and I have to have a pocket and flap that match on each side, and I don't believe there is enough fabric to do another set. I'm going to trace 2 copies each of the pocket and flap pieces so I can place them all before I cut.

So, work is progressing, although not as quickly as I could wish. I don't want to rush though, or try to do tricky things (like match and cut out the pockets) at less than optimum times, like late at night when I'm too tired to realize I'm too tired to do things right.


Vicki said...

Thanks for mentioning Ann's tip about the tape - I hadn't heard that before and it sounds like a good tip. I am not much help with fixing your carcoat - but it looks fine as it is (and can't be worse than RTW). Hope the progress on the new coat goes well!

Summerset said...

Slow, careful progress is better than a rushed job with regrets or a lot of ripping and restitching. I think you made the right decision on the pocket matching - you can't match everything all the time, just look at the options and do your best.

Anonymous said...

Thanks so much for letting us know you didn't need the extra at the front edge. I'm about to start a coat from Patrones magazine (as soon as Thanksgiving is over,I hope), and had been debating with myself whether to add the "walking ease" I think it is called. Your coat will be gorgeous, as are all your creations, and I will bow to your & Ann's wisdom on the front edge! :) Just another example of how wonderful the internet is for sewists -- shared knowledge!

Nancy K said...

I have added the walking ease to my Vogue coat muslin and now I am wondering if I really need it. I haven't cut out the coat yet. Talk about being behind! As for the other coat, leave it alone it looks great. I don't think that you can do what you are thinking of anyway. Pad stitching the lapel is about stitching shape in as you mold it over your hand. It's also the kind of coat that is fine in a less couture process. Now, your cashmere, that's a couture kind of coat. Can't wait to see it.