What I Should Be Working on This Week: Vogue 7538

We had a freak snowstorm yesterday, and the temperatures here are starting to drop. I’ve been distracted by Halloween sewing and 60s dresses and Hurricane Sandy, and I’m starting to get back on track with my Fall/Winter plans.

After many failed muslins, I’m abandoning the Gertie coat and working on Vogue 7538, a shawl collar coat that looks similar enough. The collar isn’t cut in one piece and there are princess seams everywhere, so hopefully fitting this coat won’t be so bad.

Butterick 5824: Angry Samurai Face Muslin #3

All muslins look great on my dressform.

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I have no shame with posting poor photos of myself with no makeup on and unflattering hair for the sake of fitting a coat.

This is my third muslin for the Gertie coat. I looked at the flat pattern measurements and decided to cut a size 8, since the last two muslins looked way too baggy.

Adjustments:
+ cut a standard size 8
+ lowered the bust dart by half an inch

I totally messed up the back collar. I think I have to change the back dart since there was way too much fabric by the upper back, and I just had to pinch it out. Has anyone had this issue with the Gertie coat?

I think it looks better compared to the other two. The underarm poofiness is totally gone, and there’s still plenty of ease for me to move my arms with a sweater underneath it.

What do you guys think?

Butterick 5824: Coat Muslins, Take 2

Only one side is adjusted. I pinned the collar back as best as I could to see how the muslin was doing.

Front.
Pink post-it side: adjusted

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Back.
Pink post-it side: adjusted

I’m wearing a medium weight winter cardigan that I wear all the time over my pajama scrubs.

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Adjustments I made:
+ Removed some fabric from the underarm
+ Removed some width from center back, tapering to nothing at the waistline

Adjustments I still need to make:
+ Lower bust dart apex slightly

I’ve been trying really hard to listen to my sewing intuition. It’s kind of hard to explain, but I have a little internal voice that tells me when a certain fabric is good for something (drape, color, texture) or when muslins fit right. I have the same voice that speaks up at work when I’ve designed things that “feel right”, or the opposite.

This is take two of coat muslins. I know the huge collar hides a multitude of sins, but I don’t want to make this unless absolutely everything feels right at the muslin stage.

I also had doubts about my fabric the day after I bought it. I’ve been on the fence about it and trying to ignore my sewing intuition, which told me I was forcing the fabric. I showed the fabric to my mom today (who is both my biggest critic and supporter), and without telling her my suspicions, she immediately said the weight was way too light for a coat, confirming my suspicions. She did suggest that it had good drape and would be good for some pants, which was what I also suspected. Even if we have a light winter, it still might be just way too light. This just means more fabric shopping if the muslin process works out.

Does anyone have any thoughts on the muslins?

Coat Inspiration

I’m still undecided about what fabric to use for my Gertie coat, and though I own a lot of black for Fall/Winter (and year round), I really don’t want to make a plain black, super practical coat, but I do want to make something that is neutral enough to be wearable all season. Here are some coats that I’m looking at for inspiration.

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Pink Coat

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I can’t decide if this coat is too light-colored for me or too light-colored to wear in winter. I tend to look washed out in pastels and lighter colors, too.

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Olive Military Inspired Coat


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This is a Balmain melton military coat. I really like olive since it’s not black, and therefore details can be seen, and yet it’s versatile enough to go with browns, blacks, and other deeply saturated colors.

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White Fancy Coat with Lace Border Details


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I love the lace border on this fancy coat. I don’t know how practical winter whites are for me since most of my Fall/Winter clothing is dark-colored though.

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Black Polka-Dot Coat


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I really like the subtle texture on this coat. It’s black, so it will go with everything for me, but the polka dots are small and give it some texture.

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Red Coat with White Piping


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The white piping on the collar and sleeves really makes this coat stand out.

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Leopard Coat


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This is the Betsey Johnson But Darling jacket. This happens to be a jacket, but I love the leopard print contrast cuffs and collar.

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Mauve Coat


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Mauve is another great color for Fall/Winter. It’s subtle enough to go with lighter pieces and strong enough to go with darker pieces. It’s also a very unique color.

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Purple Coat with Black fur trim


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I really like the black fur on this deep purple coat. It looks very luxe.

Butterick 5824: Gratuitous Coat Muslins with Bad Hair

I got started on my coat pattern over the weekend. I’m only making a muslin of the top half, since I’m pretty sure the bottom half will work just fine. I’m most concerned about the kimono sleeve, which has potential to look baggy on me.

Sleeve, no adjustments.

I’m wearing a winter sweater underneath the coat to make sure the ease is enough. The sleeve looks ok but a bit baggy.

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Sleeve, with adjustments. I took up the extra baggy fabric on the underarm. Is this over fitting? I definitely like the sleeve that’s a bit more fitted.

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Sleeve, with adjustments. It looks just fine when my arm is down.

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Sleeves, both arms down.

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Left sleeve – adjusted.
Right sleeve – not adjusted.

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Back view.

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So the big question is, take out the ease from the kimono sleeve or not? I don’t think it feels too tight without the ease, and I definitely don’t want baggy underarms. Do you guys have any suggestions?

What I’m Working on This Week

Butterick 5824, Advance 4518.

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I’ve decided to try my first coat pattern, Gertie’s coat. I’ve been looking for a knee length princess coat for awhile now, and haven’t found any yet. Hopefully if I start now I can finish it in time for winter.

I usually only do one project at a time, but since a coat might be at time-consuming project, I also want to start on Advance 4518.

Lady Grey Coat: Early Progress

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After procrastinating on this project for the past week, I finally got over being intimidated by tailored outerwear and decided to cut the patterns out. Esteemed Sewing Assistant (Bean) was helping the entire way.

Edit: I just realized this morning that I should have gone up a size for the Lady Grey coat, for the layers needed during the winter. I’ll probably use 1/2 inch seam allowances instead of 5/8 inch on my muslin and see how that works out. I’ll probably also need to add flannel as an interlining for extra warmth.