My Summer Blazer is moving right along! Today I have more in-progress photos for you, including construction of the infamous notched collar and finishing the sleeve cuffs. I’ve been really enjoying working on this project and love all the detailed work, and I’m excited that this blazer is nearing the finish line! Pretty soon I’ll have a classy jacket to pair with all my summer skirts and dresses. : )
To recap, this is Simplicity 2446, a fitted, classic-cut blazer from the Amazing Fit series. I cropped the length a bit compared to my previous version. The jacket is constructed in a cotton print and fully lined in Bemberg rayon.
Like a proud mama, I took lots of photos of my baby. Enjoy!
To pick up where I left off last time, I finished assembling the lining by setting in the sleeves – a challenge in slippery rayon! The pattern recommends using 2 lines of gathering stitches at the sleeve cap, which I’ve found results in lots of puckering. Boooo. This time, I tried Lauren’s method of using just 1 row of stitching exactly on the seam line (5/8 inch in this case), and it worked SO much better! I feel so enlightened. Friends, go forth and try this technique.
I also attached the upper collar to the lining, which was a huge pain in the ass. There is SO much ease in that collar piece, and since it’s fully interfaced, it’s really hard to ease into the neckline. UGH! It’s done though, moving on!
Here’s the blazer in its current form, wrinkly sleeves and all. : ) After the lining was complete, I attached it to the shell by stitching along the front opening, lapels, and collar. This is one of my favorite construction steps because it transforms the project into one piece. It’s a satisfying milestone – no more loose pieces to attach! Yeah!!
Oooh, I love that surprise yellow piping! I can’t wait to flash it to people while I’m wearing the jacket, ha. : )
For security, I topstitched all around the front opening, lapels, and collar. I don’t want those lapel points popping back inside when the jacket is cleaned. I increased the contrast in the photo above so you can (hopefully) see the white line of topstitching. I think it came out pretty well! I increased my stitch length to 3.0 mm, just for fun. I didn’t use an edge-stitching foot or anything, just moved my needle over a few notches and aligned the edge of my presser foot with the fabric edge.
Now for the tricky part. See that corner in the seam above? It’s where the upper collar is attached to the front facing, forming the lapel all the way to the right of the photo. I didn’t take any photos while I was actually sewing the seam, but man, this was tough! The ridiculous amount of ease in the collar resulted in some wrinkling – can you see it in the top half of the photo? And the corner isn’t exactly perfect. These imperfections kind of annoy me, but I’m trying to look past them. Trying. : )
That stupid corner presents itself to the world even on the outside of the blazer. Can you see the wrinkling above, right along the fold line? Boooo. It’s right near the lapel, which is the focal point of the blazer. I really don’t understand why there is SO much ease in the upper collar. Next time I’ll have to remove some before attaching it.
Anyway, moving on to happier places… the sleeve cuffs:
I’m using shiny silver buttons with little crests – how fancy. : ) As I mentioned last time, the sleeve plackets aren’t functional, but I did slice open the buttonholes so the placket could button properly. The buttons are sewn on by hand using hand quilting thread – my favorite type of thread for hand stitching. It’s a little thicker and stronger than all purpose thread.
The sleeve hem is catch stitched, and the lining is slip stitched with a folded & dropped hem. I used the same method as my previous blazer, described in detail here. I’ll use the same technique for the jacket hem… just haven’t gotten to it yet!
Doesn’t the inside of the sleeve look so inviting? The rayon feels so cool against my skin. This is what I love so much about sewing my own clothes — have you ever owned a RTW blazer that was lined in something other than polyester? I haven’t! Even John’s expensive blazers for work have polyester linings. I find them so hot and sweaty. Yay for all things handmade!
The inside of the blazer is looking good, just waiting for a hem.
Somehow I managed to screw up the top of the back vent just a little bit. See how the 2 folds don’t quite meet in the middle? I had a row of basting stitches above and below the seam line, so I really don’t know how the folds shifted during sewing. Just goes to show how slippery that rayon is! The collar seam was SO tricky to sew with all that ease that there was no way I was unpicking it to fix the vent. I do value my sanity, after all. : )
And here’s that hem waiting for some hand sewing. I pressed up the hem allowance (1.5 inches) and tried to ease in the excess fabric. The pattern has you baste along the hemline during construction, which really did make it easy to press up the hem at the end.
And now, are you ready for a modeled preview??
Ooooh, exciting!! So crisp! So classy! : ) It needs a good press, but I’m really happy with the fit. I suspect my next blazer post will be the big reveal, so stay tuned! And as always, thanks for indulging me with all these photos.
As a side note, have you noticed the sewing blogosphere trending heavily toward marketing lately? I can’t say that I’m a huge fan of it. Here at Allspice Abounds, my goal is to share my sewing and crafty pursuits in a friendly and collaborative environment, without pushing an agenda or trying to get you to buy anything. This blog is purposely ad- and sponsor-free, with the exception of ads associated with my free WordPress hosting account. Just wanted to get that off my chest. 🙂
Happy sewing, everyone! Are you working on a juicy project these days?