Monday, February 2, 2015

Patch Pocket "Favoring" and In-seam Buttonhole

Thanks so much, thoughtful readers, for your comments about my sewing retreat projects....and also for your sympathies about my torn up perennial beds from that earlier post.  Blogging about our sewing projects and lives is so rewarding and interesting as it connects me with unmet friends around the world.  But here's a little also brings out my insecurities and performance anxiety.  We won't go into all the reasons for those issues in my life but I will share that I'm more than a little intimidated sharing new sewing frontiers so publicly. But whatever doesn't kill us makes us stronger.  No, no, I don't believe that at all.  But I do believe in stretching myself which is why this is the winter of my first public coat project.  
This weekend I returned to the next steps on the Olympia Coat project.  I abandoned the idea of the windowpane pocket pattern when I saw that it would sit on top of the French dart that I had to add to the coat front panel. I did cut open the dart so it would have less bulk but I still didn't like three layers of the pocket sitting there.  
French dart cut open
So I changed to Fred's alternative patch pocket which is shaped and then topstitched as well as sewn into the side seam. 
Lowered side patch pocket
This is another place in the directions where Fred added just a small detail that helps create a more finished result.  After cutting the lining (a burgundy silk charmeuse) you trim off 1/16" and then sew the seams together which automatically slightly "favors" the fashion fabric.

Lining "favoring" the fashion fabric

 I topstitched with red topstitching thread and placed the pockets 1" lower to avoid the bulk of the dart and give my long arms a slightly more comfortable location.  
Now the back seam is sewn and then the upper shoulder and sleeve seam.  I hand basted those seams first to make sure that I got the herringbone fabric to chevron properly.  
Happy chevrons 
Next step was to add the raised collar that I stole from a Burda pattern and figure out how to create the in-seam buttonhole along the collar seam.  I have loved this little detail ever since I saw Sandra Betzina demonstrate it on her old cable TV sewing show.  She used a now OOP Sewing Workshop pattern called, oddly enough, the Sandra Betzina coat. Sandra Betzina coat on Etsy I actually have that pattern in my resource center and went to it for the directions.  But her coat is unlined and uses a slightly different method.  So here's the simple version that I will be using, tested on some leftover coat fabric.  
In-Seam Buttonhole
I'm using a large button so the first step is to measure out a space large enough for the button to slide through easily.  Sew the seam with that space left unstitched.  

I sewed the facing piece the same way then clipped carefully to create the inseam "lips."

Sew the "lips" of the  outer seam to the facing seam.

Press all seams open and test your button:
My test worked so today I will take these markings and transfer them to my coat collar seam and facing seam.  Fred's directions are interesting at this point.  Rather than sew the lining pieces to the facing, she had you sew the facings to the coat first then work on sewing that underarm dart and underarm sleeve with the gusset.  Again I think I will be doing hand basting to make sure all my layers are stable and work together.  
Just as an aside, I think the real master of creative in-seam buttonholes was Lois Ericson.  Issue 103 (Oct/Nov 2002) of Threads has a beautiful article describing the process with the loveliest examples of her creativity. I'm just happy with my simple one here but would love to plan a garment with such beauty as well as functionality.
Next time you see pics I should have the coat body assembled and be ready to start the lining process.  Deep breathes....