2013 ESSENTIAL TOPS SEW-A-LONG FINISHED PROJECTS

February 8, 2014

INFRASTRUCTURE...

...I've always liked that word for reasons unknown.  Joe Biden's (you've got to love him, what comes up comes out and he does not know how to camouflage the truth) use of this word this week sparked lots of controversy but made me think about current coat construction that's underway in my sewing area.  First,

Infrastructure:  generally defined as the set of interconnected structural elements that provide framework supporting an entire structure of development.

Of course it's most commonly used to describe modes of transportation (roads, highways, water systems, and most recently talk of airports).  In comparison, the word infrastructure makes me think about the different aspects of tailoring I choose to put into a jacket or coat.  Tailoring provides the framework that supports the development of my coat.  I finally realize that I actually LIKE the painstaking hand stitching, layering of interfacing, underlining, and all the time it takes to execute.  Like it yes, but still moan about it a little bit along the way.

 
Not the most attractive thing but still definitely infrastrucure.  The bodice of my Vogue 8548 coat was first block fused which kept the fabric from raveling during the pattern cutting phase, however; as you can see, not so much during the construction phase.  First I zigzaged all raw edges but then had to switch to serging all the seams.  Didn't want all that fluff in my serger but had no other choice if I wanted have enough fabric left to end up with a coat.  

 

  • the front and back of the funnel collar was double interfaced to make sure it stands up
  • added a back stay
  • underlined the entire bodice
  • taped front edges and collar
  • pressed princess seams and shoulder open and topstitched both sides of each seam
I'm highly vested in the project now, and with each step it's becoming less fearful.


The biggest fear being the raveling issue.  I'll just need to super clean my serger after the process - or maybe I need to clean it after each seam is serged.  Still haven't decided if I want to use buttonhole or loop closures - guess I'll need to decide that today because it's now time to add the bodice facing and lining. Maybe I need to opt for buttonholes because I really can't see making self fabric loops out of this ravelly fabric.  I don't think bound button holes are an option this time, I just don't think they'll work???  But I might do a practice one just to see because they would be a nice addition...

23 comments:

  1. I am embarking on a coat as well. Mine is only in the muslin stage, but I'm thinking about buttonholes too. I don't like the buttonholes my machine makes, so I have two choices. Take the train into Manhattan and get them made at Jonathon Embroidery for a few dollars, but a $35 train ride in. Or make bound buttonholes which I haven't made in a few years, but a little practice should help. If this is not an option for your fabric you could try a complementary tighter weave fabric to make the buttonholes out of. You could also use a light fusible interfacing to make the fabric more stable.

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    1. If I lived close to NYC I'd shoot over there for custom made buttonholes in a flash - but alas that trip would probably end up costing me from $500 to $1,000. Like you I'm planning on making a couple of practice bound button holes to see if it can be done with this fabric that ravels to the hilt. I don't think that interfacing self fabric loops will work, also because of the profuse raveling problem. My machine(s) all make decent buttonholes so I really think this is the option I will take. I do so love sewing but it rarely ever happens without some problem showing up. Guess the fun of it all is just making it work anyway!

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  2. When I'm unsure of what to do about closures, I use snaps! You can add non-functional buttons on the outside whilst maintaining the ability to close the coat.

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    1. Great idea. This coat also calls for hidden snaps on the interior, but snaps might work as well. Thanks for the tip.

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  3. I'm excited to see your completed project Faye! I am really loving the color!

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    1. Even with all the raveling I'm loving it to Myra. I was experiencing some delusions of granular (which I suffer from often) earlier today thinking that I just might finish the project this weekend. Not a chance, but I am loving it. One week down already, well two weeks won't be too awfully bad.

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  4. I use snaps too - I would also reinforce this sort of fabric like mad, so the snaps hold. And always undo the snaps carefully by prising them apart gently, so that you don't pull the fabric.

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    1. Good advice Sarah. I'm going to practice a couple of buttonholes first. Prising - I know exactly what you mean.

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  5. Faye, you may like the Buttonhole Window found in Sandra Betzina's, Power Sewing Step-by-Step book,as a closure option. Just type Buttonhole Window into the search bar of your computer to find instructions. I have used this buttonhole with ravelly fabric and fake leather as the bound material with great results.

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    1. It didn't cross my mind to check Betzina's book. Thanks Regina.

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  6. I like the top and adding the scarf giving it a cowl neck look is perfect. I love your Barbie's dress.
    Meditation
    priest of love

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  7. I am loving your coat so far. It is coming along nicely. For my first coat I did covered buttons with snaps to close the coat. I'm not opposed to doing that again, but I think for my next coat I'd like to do bound buttonholes. Try to see yourself in the finished coat and hopefully that will help you decide what to do regarding buttons, snaps, etc.... I also agree with practicing. Whichever one you feel comfortable with is the one you should go with.

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    1. Snaps are a great idea. Thanks Andrea.

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  8. This is shaping up beautifully! I immediately thought of the some big snaps, maybe covered in a matching silk or chiffon, maybe not. I do think you can also work out the BBholes. Maybe an extremely light tricot interfacing on the "lips" would help too. Samples, samples......I know you make them and practice like I do. That will give you the answer.

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    1. Yes, with buttonholes practicing is always a must for me Bunny.

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  9. Looking good so far, you're doing a wonderful job!!

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    1. Thank you Tany. I'm trying to line it like you did your Blue Orchid jacket.

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  10. Faye, this coat is looking great and you've definitely put plenty of elbow grease into this one! Loving it.

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    1. Thank you Brenda. I'm trying not to over do it though.

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  11. Thank you, Faye, for stopping by. It warmed my heart to hear from you.

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  12. Maybe try using canned air to blow the ravels out of your serger between seams? That's got to help it a lot.

    And thanks for stopping by and offering me support during hubby's crisis. I appreciate it greatly. Stay warm during this latest ice storm!

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