I didn’t actually plan on making a complete outfit, I just happened to pick out fabrics that kind of go together. (I should probably iron my clothes before taking photos of them. Except my iron is a piece a shit…)
There really isn’t much to say about the top and skirt. My past efforts using flimsy gauze have not worked well but I stumbled across the method of using gelatine to stabilise fabric from Lladybird. It worked really well! My cutting and sewing was much improved and I would really recommend the technique.
The jacket pattern doesn’t include lining, which just seems silly to me. A jacket should be lined. I decided to take what I had learned in a Craftsy class and try to add my own. I had some leftover teal lining from one of my earlier dresses (which is horribly sewn and does not get worn) but that meant that I didn’t have spare in case I stuffed up. In the end it was a great choice as I love the teal against the grey.
The size I chose was a little too small so I decided to omit the button (also, I can’t be bothered). The sleeves were way too small and required a smaller seam allowance. I think even if I use this pattern again a size larger then I would still have to decrease the seam allowance of the sleeves.
I got very very confused with the collar. It took a lot of rereading and staring at the illustration to figure it out the under collar and I was really amazed with how well it turned out. But I could not figure out the upper collar and my attempts at attaching the upper and under was terrible. In the end I got around the problem by not sewing the corners and instead top stitching the collar. Meh, it worked…
So while I do love this jacket, I would say that this is not a suitable pattern for a beginner.
After all the time I spent preparing the pattern pieces for this project, I was very keen to start sewing. It didn’t start well – I had my needle in the wrong position for two seams before I picked up my mistake. It was only 1/8″ so it was very annoying to unpick and redo it over such a little mistake. Then, as things were starting to go well and I was feeling confident, I could not for the life of me match the front facing to the front lining. Normally the issue would be the lining, I’m terrible at cutting out lining. But it turned out I had cut some sides of the front facing a size too large. Urg!
Throughout the sewing I cycled between thinking “I’ve got this” to “This project is beyond me”. I do have a tendency to be overly ambitious in my creative projects but in many ways it is a good thing. I might not get the outcome that I want but striving for something that is beyond my current skill set pushes me further than I could go cruising through an easy project. I might have felt that this jacket is a train wreck but I still had the sense of satisfaction that I’ve come so far in learning how to sew and that I am learning a lot more from this particular class.
Attaching the sleeves to the rest of the jacket just wouldn’t work! The lining crimped easily but it still didn’t match the jacket so I ended up easing it. And I managed to rip one of the sleeves. I picked it up and the notch ripped! Fuck that, I’m not cutting it out again…so I stitched up the rip and went ahead with attaching it.
And then, after months of agony, I was so close to the end. And the hems were wrong! I don’t know what I did! It looks like I didn’t properly correct the front facing when I cut it wrong way at the beginning. But I really have no idea what I did or how to fix it. So fuck it, I stitched it up as best I could…
So there you go, I finished it. It does not look even remotely professional but fuck yeah, I did it!
I’ve had Craftsy’s Motor City Express Jacket class on my to-do list for well over a year now. This is the biggest project that I’ve ever attempted. I’m not sure I’m yet up to the task.
The class is designed to be as efficient as possible, rather than running back and forth between the sewing machine and iron etc. Despite the efficiency, it is still taking me months just to prep for sewing (I get easily distracted by other hobbies but still…). It’s hard to stay motivated with all this cutting and prep. (And hard to keep my workspace organised.)
So much fabric to cut! And interlining and underlining. I’ve never lined like that before. I can’t say that I’m impressed with my efforts. Not all of the interfacing is fusing to the fabric, causing an ugly bubbling effect on the fabric. I’ve ironed the pieces again and again but it just isn’t fusing, I even managed to burn a section of interfacing! I am hoping that it wont be noticeable when I’m wearing it and natural creases are created but I don’t have much faith in my jacket.
I’m particularly worried because I don’t have any fabric left over in case of an emergency. If I ruin the pieces I’ve cut then that’s it for this project. Game Over. The fabric was in the remnant discount section and there was just enough to cut out each piece. I had thought about making a cream and black jacket but I couldn’t pass up the price of the raspberry fabric, and it was the same colour using in the video tutorials, which I thought looked good.
Finally I am ready to begin sewing! How long will it take?