As promised last week, it’s back to sewing today and I want to show you my new favourite winter make…a casual leopard print coat using Burda 114 08/16. I chose this style because I wanted a shorter length with more of a relaxed feel and this design ticks those boxes.
I love the fold-back collar and the dropped shoulders and who could not be bowled over by those gorgeous pockets and the cute back belt detail.
I used printed wool from Fabric Godmother which was a present last Christmas and I’ve lined it with some beige stash-lining that’s backed with a lightweight thermal wadding for extra cosiness.
I made a toile/muslin first in a size 38 but realised it felt a little too oversized so I went back down to a size 36. The sleeve length was about half an inch too long but elsewhere seemed fine apart from the fact that from side view the front hemline picked up and it was obvious that I needed extra length to accommodate my bust. I didn’t need a standard full bust adjustment that adds a bit of width, I only wanted the length so just a simple dart was needed…except not at the side where it could interfere with the look of those fab pockets. Here’s how:
- First, I created the dart by drawing a slanted line from below the armhole towards the bust point which carried on horizontally to the front edge I cut and spread this by 1.5”
- I drew in a side dart.
- Next, I slashed down from the shoulder to within a couple of millimetres from the dart end.
- I closed the side dart which then opened up the vertical slash.
- Then, I taped tissue behind the slash, drew the dart and finally I trued its upper edge.
Close the side dart to open up the shoulder dart. True-up the top edge of the new dart.
The Sewing Bit
So that was pattern prep…next up the sewing.
Actually, before I got stuck into the sewing I completely interfaced each and every piece with lightweight interfacing because the fabrics seemed a bit thinner than I wanted and it needed some oomph. I used a knit, weft insertion iron-on interfacing from Tailor Mouse and once that was completed the first step was the pockets.
Of course, in usual Burda fashion, the pocket instructions needed to be read a few times before I was clear on the process…
First, I fixed the lined flap and the welt in place along two lines, then trimmed and slashed to the corners. The fabric and lining for the pocket bag are seamed across along the previous stitching lines, then stitched down each side and finally, the little end triangles turned under and stitched down.
Grading the pocket flap seams. Positioning flap and welt. Slashing into the corners from the wrong side of the fabric. The finished pocket bag.
To be honest, I found the method a bit clunky and feel it could be done slightly differently but I love the result nonetheless.
Constructing the little belts, side seams, shoulder seams and undercollar, all went without a hitch. Then I sewed on the front facings followed by the hems which I caught in place by hand after ironing strips of bias-cut interfacing within the hem allowances.
Here are a few process shots:
I cut open the darts to reduce bulk. Some tape was added to the shoulder seam as it was a bit stretchy. Iron on tape at the roll line and bias strip on the hem allowance With the undercollar in place and sleeves sewn in.
Next up…the lining…
Using the thin Thermore Ultra Thin Batting mentioned earlier, I quilted it onto the lining by sewing vertical lines about 3 to 4 inches apart using my walking foot and a quilt guide. A quick tip: Where the front shoulder dart is sewn, trim the wadding away from the dart intake to reduce bulk.
For extra pretty insides, I made a flat binding insert detail down the edge of the front facings in a bold red for a pop of colour. There’s a tutorial for this here if you’re interested.
And finally, I created a fancy label detail with a square of fabric that has fringed edges.
You’ll notice that for someone that loves to topstitch there’s a distinct lack of it on my coat. I felt that it may get lost in the busy pattern, yet now I’m having vague feelings of something missing and I’m starting to wonder if I should? What say you? No leave well alone or yes, go for it…tell me in comments.
And that’s it…I can’t tell you how much I love this little coat it’s a throw-on-and-feel- fab kind of coat that’s casual and a little bit fancy at the same time. Plus it’s really cosy and warm and it has room for thick knits with those deep armholes. I think I’ll be getting a lot of wear out of it over the next few months. I can highly recommend this pattern…well apart from how tricky the pocket instructions were, hehe. But how about creating a patch pocket under the flap and tab instead of the hidden style as an alternative? Much easier!
I nearly forgot to say that I’m entering this coat into the link-up party held by Stefanie of Sea Of Teal for the November sew your wardrobe basics for which the theme was wool. Thanks for hosting Stefanie!
Okey, dokey, that’s it for this week. Back next week. Not sure if I have a make to share or something else, so it’ll be a surprise 🙂
See you soon.
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