I hope everyone has enjoyed this holiday season with family and friends. For those who have suffered a loss, bad times or any other difficulty I hope that you found comfort during what may have been a difficult time. I was fortunate to spend some time off with my immediate family and reach out to those who are further away. Now the countdown is on to the New Year.
I'm so excited to share my latest project with you, because this Clare coat is my very first *REAL* coat. Sure I've made several bomber jackets and a few knit cardigans, but not a wool, fully lined coat like this one. I'm so proud of it, I've been wearing it everywhere.
This pattern is great pattern for a first time coat maker. There are several pattern pieces, a ton of interfacing and dozens of steps, but as expected with indie patterns the instructions and illustrations are very clear and as an added bonus Heather offers a detailed sewalong on the Closet Case blog.
The recommended fabrics include medium to heavyweight coating fabrics, such as melton, felt, tweed or boiled wool so I chose this Navy Wool Melton Coating. Unfortunately this fabric is sold out but there are several wool options in the coating category. After debating the color I settled on this gold crepe backed satin for the lining.
I choose View B mainly because I didn't have the horsehair canvas that View A requires, but I also thought it would be a little more forgiving as far as fit since I didn't plan on making a muslin. Based on the finished measurements I selected a size 16 and it fits well, my only issue is under the arms where I could use a little more ease.
On to the construction, I decided to fully interface all of my outer pieces and figured it would be quickest to block interface my wool. I did this by laying my weft interfacing fusing side down on the wrong side of my wool and spot fusing every foot or so all over my fabric. Then I cut and marked all nine of the main pattern pieces, which honestly seemed to take forever, but it was worth it in the end. I saved cutting the lining for later (except for the pocket lining which you need for the outer shell construction).
Once you assemble all the main outer shell you're more than halfway complete and it begins to look like a coat!
When I was researching the Clare coat pattern I noticed that both Jodi of Sew Fearless and Alison of Curate and Create added piping between their lining and facing and I feel it gives the coat an extra touch that I wanted to incorporate as well. Though in the final product I feel the red added to the gold and the navy looks a bit like a crayon box, the three primary color work well together on the color wheel and they work well here.
After adding the piping to the facing I spent another almost eternity cutting out the lining fabric and proceeded to construct the lining as instructed.
My favorite is this hanging loop because it such a small, but professional detail. I also added my label at this stage to avoid hand sewing later.
Finally it was time to attach the lining to the shell of the coat. This is the only place were I could see someone getting lost if she/he has never bagged a lining before. Attaching the sleeves seems strange the first time you do it (I learned this trick previously when lining my bomber jackets), but it really does work.
I was so excited that I actually wore my coat to work before even adding the snaps because I just couldn't wait. I debated going with a exposed zipper (an option shared on the Closet Case blog) but I'm glad I stuck with the snaps. I used 5 size 10 gold sew on snaps that I spaced about 6" apart.
I am simply ecstatic about my new coat and I'm sorta sad it took this long for me to make one. I'm also sad for probably the first time that we don't get many days here in the southeast that are cold enough to wear this coat. Thankfully, we hardly ever have weather cold enough to require interlining my coat. I'd love to make View A (probably next year) with a bright color wool like yellow or Pantone's new color of the year ultraviolet.
I think I've caught the coat making bug! What's your favorite coat pattern?
See ya next year!