Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Olympia Coat

Do sewing blog posts improve with age, like fine wines?  Probably not because I think garment posts are best when they coordinate with the weather and season.  Southern Hemisphere readers, this post's for you....and for any readers who can remember back to winter of 2015 and this coat project.
Yes, when I left off months ago (more about that later) I was almost done with my first coat project, the Olympia Coat pattern from La Fred.  Here's the final result, finished in mid-February when temps were frigid and snow was still on the ground.  

Olympia Coat by La Fred

I am happy with the result, impressed that I could tackle a coat project and interested in trying a more classically tailored and structured one next winter.  This one filled a gap in my outerwear wardrobe.  I needed something knee length, warm but not bulky with enough room for knit cardigans and tunics.  It is lined in silk charmeuse which feels terrific and is wonderfully warm.  The pattern has a separate lining pattern with a back pleat and set-in, not raglan sleeves.  I was a little concerned about that detail but it seems to work together without a problem.
I used vintage buttons from a Florida friend and covered snaps for all but the top one.

I'm happy with how the underarm gussets turned out (on the right side of the fabric, at least, not so pretty inside) and the chevron of the herringbone down the sleeve makes me smile even when the coat is hanging in the closet.
underarm gusset

I'll share my "need to improve/reconsider next time" thoughts as well.  I used silk organza to underline the coat and am generally happy with that decision.  It makes for a very lightweight, almost sweater-like feel.  I think for a longer garment like this I would prefer a lightweight fusible interfacing for the full coat body next time.  I changed the collar after Sarah  Veblen helped me with the initial fitting and wish I had done a quick neckline collar fitting since this one is a little too confining for my tastes when it is buttoned all the way up.  Since I mean to wear it as a spring/fall coat that is not a problem but is a good lesson nonetheless.  Last lesson is that my linings never seem to entirely please me and this coat was no exception.  I don't bag my jackets and am glad that I hand hemmed this coat.  There's nothing obviously to complain about but I just feel that the lining and my fashion fabric are "fiddly" and not as compatible as I would like.  I don't even know how to phrase that as a question but I will be extra careful when tackling my next lined project.
I feel somewhat sheepish about even blogging today.  I have been absent from the blogging world, neither reading nor commenting, for the last two plus months.  It's been a combination of good things (a wonderful month back in Naples, Florida visiting dear friends and enjoying the best weather possible, a new fiber arts class and some crafty projects) and the sad passing of Mr. Lucky's 96 year-old father in California.  He was a very admirable person, hard-working, dedicated to giving his family a good life and strong values.  His life didn't always turn out the way he would have hoped but he never turned angry or bitter.  Up until last September he was still driving (yes, against our wishes) and paying his own bills and such so this has been sad but not a tragedy.  Mr. Lucky had several long visits in the last six months so while we mourn his passing, we are glad that his suffering was brief and he had memories of love and caring support.
It's good to be back to some blogging and I look forward to catching up on what you are creating for whatever season is happening in your part of the world.  Next up, some spring additions to my wardrobe.  Until then, thanks for reading and I wish you sew much fun.


  1. Very nice coat. I'm impressed you found/made the time to make the coat.

    Welcome back.

  2. Your new coat is really lovely. I love the fabric and your closures.Actually, I like everything about it!

  3. I think your coat is beautiful. I remember the in-progress posts and am glad to see the finished project! I've been using fusible weft interfacings for jackets these days, rather than silk organza as an underlining, and I'm just amazed at how much I like it. My condolences to you and your family -- 96 means he had a good, long life.


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