In any case, the latest sewing project is another pattern from the December 2012 BurdaStyle Magazine:
|BS-12-2012-138 - Color Blocked Coat|
This project was a bit more time consuming than my other recent projects, but mostly because color blocking means lots of pieces. And lots of changing thread. And lots of seams to deal with. I am thinking that of my projects so far this year, this one will probably see the least amount of use. Not because it turned out poorly, but mostly because I don't think it really fits in with "my style" (Whatever that is. I think it is morphing right now. A work in progress so to speak.) I thought this coat looked very cute in the magazine, but sort of knew it might not be the type of garment I would wear out on the town regularly. Which is why I decided to do an experimental/wearable muslin version out of some rather inexpensive craft-store grade fleece. I was trying to get my favorite color combo - teal/purple/black, but ended up with more of a mint/blue/black color palate. The purple options were a little too Easter egg if you know what I mean. I am pretty happy with the finished product though:
|And it has pockets!|
|The collar, and the fantastic black "fabric covered" hook and eye closures I found at JoAnn Fabrics.|
|Close-up of the curved yoke seam.|
Here is my official pattern review:
Pattern Description: Color blocked coat pattern using three colors.
Pattern Sizing: Burda sizes 34-42. I traced a size 38 at the collar, graded out to a 40 at the shoulders, and used a size 42 on the sleeves and lower back.
Were the instructions easy to follow? Actually I thought the instructions were really good! I pretty much followed them (though I didn't really need them) since they were the construction order I would have used on my own anyway. I didn't finish the inside facing exactly as described, but since the fleece isn't going to ravel or fray I figure it doesn't really matter all that much.
Did it look like the photo/drawing when you were done with it? Yes! I changed the colors, but it looked very much like the photo and line drawing in the end.
What did you particularly like/dislike about the pattern? I liked how this pattern used the color blocking trend to create interesting shapes in the coat design, but also be flattering to the body. I also really like how shaping is built into the seams that help form the coat to the body. It isn't a tight figure-hugging shape, but it is definitely not a box with sleeves either. Despite the curved seams and many pieces, this was actually pretty easy to put together, so that was nice as well. My only dislike is that the back of the sleeves seemed to have a lot of unnecessary ease. Otherwise I thought the pattern was great.
Fabric used: I used (anti-pill) fleece from Jo-Ann Fabrics for most of the jacket. Some leftover jersey scraps were used for the front pocket pieces (to reduce bulk), and I used a bit of interfacing for the collar.
Pattern alterations or design changes you made: None. I made the coat exactly as drafted.
Would you sew this again? Would you recommend it to others? Well, this coat does make quite a statement, so I don't know that I really need a closet full of them. I am a bit on the fence about the style (on the one hand, I really like the bold fun colors, but on the other I don't know if I will really wear it out a lot). So I would tentatively say that I probably won't make another one, at least not anytime soon. However, I think the pattern is fantastic and I would totally recommend this to anyone who has an interest in making a color blocked coat. Or even someone who didn't want to color block and just wanted interesting seam line details. I think this could look pretty fantastic with piping details instead of using a bunch of different fabrics. Or using a print fabric on the center front and back (and maybe the colar) with solid colors everywhere else. And I think this pattern would work well in heavy winter coating or in lightweight coating for spring. The only caveat is that there is no lining with this pattern, so you would have to draft your own. But overall it is a really versatile pattern and I would highly recommend it.
Conclusion: This coat definitely makes a statement (at least in the bold colors I chose), so I don't know that it is necessarily the best addition if one is looking to create a collection of versatile wardrobe staples. However, it is a well drafted pattern that can create quite a statement piece and lends itself to creative fabric choices and usage. I am not sure how much use I will get out of my rendition of the coat, but I am very pleased with the results in any case. It is much easier to sew than it looks and the drafting is great. Highly recommended!