Readers, today I’m hunkered down in the middle of a huge nor’easter. Thankfully I still have power and heat. With nothing more than shoveling and snowblowing facing me, it’s a good day to try on and evaluate the Spring jacket muslin. So here goes….
All things considered, not too shabby. Goodness knows, I’ve started out with much worse fitting muslins. I’ve pinned in a set of shoulder pads in order to get a more accurate representation of how the finished jacket will fit at the shoulders. The fit there is actually quite good.
The big problem is that the entire neck opening is too wide. I’m thinking that each side needs to be brought in towards the center at least 1/2″ . That would eliminate most of the gap between the shirt collar and the edge of the jacket. I plan on just tapering the additional material down to the position of the top button. This will preserve the stance of the jacket.
Also, as warned by my reader Mrs. C, the jacket has a tendency to gape away from my chest. I’m hoping that with lots of basting, careful sewing and twill tape sewn along the edge, I can prevent that problem in my finished garment.
Also, as predicted, the sleeves are too long. Here I’ve turned them back an inch. This will allow about 1/2″ of cuff to show. My plan is to shorten the pattern 1/2″ above and below the elbow in order to preserve the overall shape of the sleeve.
Here’s a view of the back. Again, it’s not that horrible. However, the neck is dipping too low in the back. I’m hoping that I can just tack on another 1/2″ without making it look freakish from behind. This kind of alteration is totally new territory for me. Nothing ventured nothing gained, right?
Readers, I’m not a tall guy. My feeling is that the body of the jacket is too long, especially now that the sleeves are shorter. It’s kind of a top heavy look, yes? Too much jacket…too little leg. I think I’d be happier, and the jacket would have a “younger” look if it were about an inch shorter. And who knows, it may make me look taller!
So here it is with the bottom turned up an inch. Much better proportion IMO. I’m going to do some rip-out and redrafting of the neck opening before going any further. It won’t look very pretty, but I want to be sure that what I think will be an easy fix, will actually work.
Finally, I’d like to pass along a tip to any of you who, like me, have no access to good tailoring supplies. In the few years that I’ve been making my own clothes, I’ve found that working with good materials really increases my satisfaction with the final product. For this project I’ll be using a “Jacket Packet” from B Black and Sons. www.bblackandsons.com Easy online ordering and they ship very quickly.
Here’s what you get… a yard of striped sleeve lining, 2 yards of a nice weight acetate lining, a generous yard+ of pocketing, a quarter yard of both under collar felt and French canvas.
But there’s more! 2 padded haircanvas chest fronts (your choice of heavy or light weight), sleeve heads, shoulder pads and a set of buttons. It all comes neatly packaged for $52.50. For me, this is a lot less than the gas and tolls to drive to NYC.
Now I just need to turn all this stuff into a jacket before March 23rd.