Hello Saturday 😊
The coat is finished and the deadline clock is ticking. I’m starting to think I should call this the cooking-while-sewing blog. I’ve just finished getting the potluck stuff for today’s Cinco de Mayo gather all done & cleaned up, and all the things I need to take across town is loaded in the car. Now I have only a few hours left for working & tomorrow will be last minute insanity. (Yes, I know, I’m taking time blogging too, but I promised!)
Final time on the coat: 19.25 hours. I had to check the numbers twice because that is way over what I expected. I opted to use the trim (that had to be put on anyway) to finish the edges & that took a lot more time than doing it fully lined. I serged the inside edge of the canvas to the coat hems & stitched them down flat. That made the edges very stiff. Not lining also added way too much bulk at some seams, especially around the armholes where there ended up being 6 layers of the wool on a clipped curve because of the facings. Due to the amount of handling to get all the trim on, most of the edges stretched some as well. This is a jacquard upholstery fabric and so the weave is not as stable as something plain-wove. I didn’t take the extra time to stabilize all the edges because I was trying to get this done fast. Lastly, not lining it makes it look cheap. Some decisions you just regret in the end. When you’re putting together something new that didn’t come with instructions, there is a lot of debugging (how do the pieces go together, what order to assemble in, getting the scale of details right). The second one you rarely make has the benefit of all the knowledge you absorbed on the first one. I have friends who do a complete mockup first to learn how to put something together & fix any fit issues. If I didn’t have to go to work every day, I might do that too.
Things I’d do differently: Line it. Use something lightweight for the trim. Use a slightly lighter weight & finer wool so it would felt on the prewash and so the finished garment isn’t so heavy. Skip the serger entirely & pink the seams.
Things that really worked: Using good wool fabric instead of velvet. I can’t guess how much added time there would have been using a pile fabric with a loose-wove backing. It would have been much bulkier and the shortcuts I took would have failed miserably.