Burda. Burda, how can I count the ways that you are a pita. Supposedly they have two English speakers who are actually American. Really? Kind of hard to believe. Most of us who sew with Burda magazine patterns complain about the directions but 117 11/13 has got to be the worst I've seen in awhile. For one thing they aren't just obtuse, they are wrong. They have you put the zipper in wrong side up and on the wrong panel. You cannot have the zipper pulls on the underneath panel. I won't continue, just be forewarned if you are planning to sew this.
The pattern calls for a ponte, and from the look of it a fairly heavy weight one. But my wool (The fabric is from Emmaonesock, one of my favorite online fabric stores) sweater knit is probably too heavy and it, unlike ponte, ravels. Consequently I had to change the order of construction and some of the construction details. This fabric is so thick that multiple layers barely fit under the presser foot.To keep everything in place I hand basted all of my seams with cotton basting thread and then used a four thread serger stitch.
There was no way that I could face the peplum with self fabric. It is way too thick for that. Instead I used a piece of the gray wool rayon jersey from the color blocked top to face the hem. I did not use it to line the peplum because after serging the waist seam there was no easy way to attach it., It's very light so I interfaced it with Pro-tricot deluxe from Fashion Sewing Supply. After sewing it to the hem I hemmed it with my coverstitch machine. It seemed fine when I sewed it, and yes I tried it on. But, as I worked on it the knit has just grew. I took it in before I hemmed it, and thought that that was enough. I'd finished applying the leather and the jacket was still too big. My next move was to remove the top stitched hem and take in the sides. Believe it or not I needed to remove another 2" from each side and I had already taken in the sides and the bust before I ever coverstitched anything. Also, it was too big all the way from underarm to hem, so it really wasn't just the coverstiching. I re-hemmed it by hand with a catch stitch. I made another sample from some leftover fabric of the coverstitch at it highest differential feed and measured the piece before and after. 8" grew to 8 1/2 so this definitely caused part of the problem. I have a Janome cs1000. A question to those of you with other brands of covertstitch, have you experienced the same issue with sweater knits?
The other problem I had is that the heavy zipper, my favorite Riri zipper of course, really pulls the jacket forward. I ended up ordering two weights of chain when the first piece seemed too light. This one is from M&J Trim and it does seem to hold the jacket in place better than without it.
Another issue I have with this jacket is really more to do with my fba. It added just too much length in the front panels. I should have taken up the upper cf panels, but I didn't. It's ok but as you can see the front is really longer than it should be. I am going to experiment with a Y fba. I've never used it because I thought it would add too much width to my cross front. The other oddity I found is that even though I added about 3/4" to the length of the peplum it looks shorter than the picture on the magazine. Maybe it's just the upper curve of my hip which the model certainly does not have!
I like this jacket much less than I thought I would. Why? Because it's a jacket that has to be 'arranged' when you put it on for the collar to look anything like the picture in Burda. I feel like the jacket is wearing me rather than the other way around. The zipper has to be zipped up just to the right point for both sides of the collar to be even. Mehh. The pattern calls for two large snaps to hold the under layer in place. This is where having notions in my stash is lovely. I think that these large plastic snaps came from Botani buttons in NYC.
I am wearing the jacket open as I type this because it is very warm with two layers across the front! To wear this jacket comfortably inside the heat needs to be off and it needs to be a cold day! It will certainly work as an outside jacket in warmer weather, but I really like to have pockets in outer wear and I couldn't face adding pockets to this unstable fabric.
This is the first piece in a planned SWAP that's running at the Stitcher's Guild. I hesitate to mention it because I am afraid of jinxing my finishing it, which is generally the case with me and these types of things. However I really like the format. It's very flexible and an easy way to plan a wardrobe. There are the usual 11 garments required. Two wild cards, which can be anything with a few restrictions. Then there are 3-3 packs. Everything doesn't have to go with everything else but they all have to look like they belong together. In other words, a collection. I've found that it's a good format for planning.
Next up is a coat, which is one of my wild cards.
More about it next time.