Friday, July 19, 2013
Boiled Wool Marfy Coat 3196
All photos in larger sizes available here.
I'm giving a class on Coat Construction tomorrow to the Omaha ASG chapter, and thought I'd better make a new coat. This is Marfy #3196 from the new 2013 catalog. I made a few changes, of course. Here's the original design.
I didn't like the belt-like hold-ups on the sleeves, and actually, much as I love 3/4-length sleeves, they're really not practical during our winters. So, I thought I would try something else.
The fabric is from Pendleton, originally a flawed piece of cream colored wool. I got it at the outlet in Nebraska City when Linda was here visiting me. She is a master at fulling woolens, and convinced me (it didn't really take much convincing!) that it would be a fun fabric. I fulled and dyed mine while she was here, and it has sat there ever since. I hadn't realized just how nice and absolutely like commercial boiled wool it was until I started working with it. It's really going to be a very warm coat.
I only made a couple of pattern alterations, doing
1. my usual swayback alteration, adding a CB seam in the lower back at the same time, and
2. shortening the bodice between the bust point and shoulder. I just folded about 1 1/2" out to do this.
By shortening the top section of the coat, it moved the button placement so the top 2 buttons are closer together than the others. I decided this was not something I was going to try to change, as I would have had to move all of the seam lines, since the buttonholes are in the horizontal seams. Also, it's not unusual for the collar button on a coat or shirt to be closer to the first bodice button than the spacing between the other buttons.
I'd never done inseam buttonholes before, and I was excited to do these. Yes, they're very simple. You just leave the seam open where you want the buttonhole. It's the back or facing that can be the problem. In a lighter weight wool, I would have made bound buttonholes in the facing. That was not going to work here though, as just having two layers (coat and facing) was already very thick. The wool absolutely does not ravel, so after some consultation with a friend, I used strips of Ultrasuede over the buttonhole area on the facing and just cut slits through it and the facing to match the buttonholes on the front. I had to jazz up the strips a little bit of course. Interesting shapes would have been fun, but I had a roll of Ultrasuede this wide in the right color, so I used this. I think it's kind of cute.
The pockets are also in the horizontal seaming. I used my lining silk for the pocket bags with a small extension of wool so that it won't show the contrast if they gape slightly.
The construction was pretty straightforward. I did hand pick-stitching on the collar, mainly because it was so thick I didn't think machine stitching was going to be either easy or attractive. I may eventually do the same thing on the front edges, but it seems to be holding well without it so far. Here you can see the stitching as well as the buttons.
The lining was put in by hand, my favorite method, although I did flat-line the sleeves. They are very heavy since I have the cuff on them, turned down, in case I decide I want to turn them up. The fabric is heavy enough and textured enough that I don't think they will slip down by themselves.
Since I flat-lined the sleeves, and the sleevehead shape is unusual, I had to figure out a way to make the body and sleeve linings come together attractively. Here's my solution.
Finally, here's the back, and another shot of the front.