This cold snap is showing no signs of letting up, so I am thrilled to have finally finished my new coat (adapted from the Victoria Blazer from ByHand London).

I chose some beautiful light grey wool for the shell (from M Rosenberg & Sons) and a dusky pink Liberty print in a heavyweight cotton for the lining (the print is also available in a lovely mustard colour Tana Lawn at Ray Stitch).

I took my inspiration from Victoria's own pattern hack, but added a few additions of my own. This was my first attempt at adapting a pattern, so following Victoria's guidance I extended the centre-front and centre-back pieces by 11”,  but also lengthened the 3/4 length sleeves to full length (to keep me warm!). There was no need for the collar, lapels or cuffs, but (again, with extra warmth in mind) I added a wide shawl collar.

Victoria's instructions are really clear so I'll only mention how I did the collar, which was super simple, and didn't require huge amounts of accuracy :). To make the most out of the little wool I had left (I only bought 1.75 metres) I measured from the centre-back point all the way down the front opening, and cut out 2 strips in that length as wide I could manage (which ended up being about 7 inches). I stitched the two lengths together to make one long strip, folded it lengthways, gave it a good press, before pinning and stitching it to the centre-front opening (in a similar way to attaching the collar and lapels on the original pattern instructions). 

Learnings for next time:

  • Sleeve lining needs a slippery fabric: I only had 1 metre of my lovely Liberty fabric, which wasn't enough to cut out the sleeves, so I used some scraps of stretchy poly-cotton from my sewing box. Rookie mistake - the sleeves stick to the clothes underneath, when taking the coat on and off, rather than gliding over them.
  • Thinner lining generally: the bottom of the coat doesn't seem to fall perfectly, and I'm not sure if it's something to do with the unusually thick lining I used. But I love the Liberty fabric (plus it makes the coat super warm), so maybe if I hem the lining separately from the shell this will help both fabrics fall properly (with some hand catch stitches to stop the 2 pieces flapping about).
  • Closure/Fastening: as you can probably tell, warmth is important to me with my coats, so I need to think about how to incorporate a closure or maybe a sash belt for the coat next time.

Pattern Lust:

I thought that a coat would be daunting for a fairly novice stitcher, but with ByHand London's sewalong and clear instructions, the Victoria Blazer (and coat hack) was pretty straightforward :)

If spring wasn’t just around the corner (and I didn’t have way too many coats already), I’d definitely look at some of these gorgeous coat patterns:

I hope you enjoyed this post - until next time!