Sunday, December 20, 2009

The sleeves are on

And I can actually see the light at the end of the tunnel.

Or is that an oncoming train?

Sleeves are on, as I said, and the hems are hand-sewn up, waiting for the lining to be inserted. I hand-stitched around the collar, lapels, pocket flaps in the same light thread I used for the buttonholes. It's basically invisible, but it adds a little more structure and crispness to the edges.

The sleeves went in pretty easily, and there truly was minimal easing in these. I did two lines of ease-stitching by hand, and I barely had to pull the stitching. Lots of steam and my pressing ham did the rest. The left sleeve wasn't as nice as the right, and I ended up taking it up a little bit more at the shoulder - for some reason, I noticed that my seam allowance was wider on the right, which accounted for the difference.

The jacket is looking a little lumpy in these photos, but that's because it's colder than #*%& in my house and he wouldn't take his thermals off to try this on over a smoother-fabric shirt. With a better under layer, there's no horizontal crease at the upper back.

I think the thing I'm happiest with so far about this project is just what a huge difference there is between his other jackets and this one. The RTW ones may look better in some respects, but since he's not a standard size, taking almost 2" out of the length of the jacket and recalculating the location of the pockets means he doesn't look like he's wearing his dad's jacket.

So what's left at this point? The lining, obviously. At least it's all sewn together and I got the sleeves inserted without a problem. If sleeve cap ease in fabric is bogus, sleeve cap ease in lining fabric is just . . . impossible. Most of the time. This time, it went okay. Weird.

So I have to insert the lining. Not looking forward to that - I haven't lined a vented jacket before - but it can't be worse than the collar, right?

I have to sew on the buttons, do the last buttonholes on the front, add another layer of interfacing to the hem because it's a little floppy feeling right now, and do a lot of pressing.

Still have some time to work on it tonight, though I neglected sewing almost completely today. We're closing in on the end of the year, and all the unfinished projects in my house are beginning to get to me (as in the sewing room counter). Today I got Mario to rev up the circular saw and cut the butcher-block counter for my kitchen cabinet that has been sitting for over a year.

So much for power tools. The block is 1" thick oak, and it laughed at his saw. Loudly. It defeated both batteries, and when the battery was re-charged, then it knocked out the motor. Thankfully he'd at least gotten all the cuts started, because I sat down there on top of the counter and finished it with a hand saw.

I have blisters, but I also have a custom-cut counter that exactly fits my cabinet and the weird notch in the wall. Now I just need to build the support for underneath, which I think I can do at some point before Christmas. After the jacket is finished.

And what is there to say about the 18" of beautiful, but cold and very inconvenient white stuff outside? Not much. I shoveled, I had a bucket of coffee to recover from shoveling, and then I played with tools. With sewing yet to do, not a bad Sunday.


LisaB said...

The jacket is really coming along! It's great to see the progress.

I was really encouraged in your last post to see your reference to Kathleen Fasanella's post on sleeve cap ease. That's one of my favorite posts.

It may be too late for this, but Kathleen has a fantastic tutorial series on lining jackets. It's called the Nameless Tutorial series and can be found at this URL.

It includes how to line a vented jacket, which I recently translated into a vented skirt. It's beautiful when finished. Even if too late for this project, you might enjoy trying it on scraps so you're ready for next time.

Gretchen the Household Deity said...

The jacket is looking good!

Elaray said...

Wow, Karen! The jacket is looking good! (And, thanks for the links)

BCN - UNIQUE designer patterns said...

Hi Karen.- Everything looks good in this jacket. I love the sporty style. Well, I just want to wish you a merry Christmas to you and yours. Much happiness to all.

Rose said...

The jacket is looking good. Merry Christmas and wishes for easy finishing of the jacket and unfinished house projects.

kanishk said...

Even if too late for this project, you might enjoy trying it on scraps so you're ready for next time.

Work from home India

Lorraine said...

The jacket looks good. It also looks a little short in the front view. Ideally, a man can cup his hand over the hem of the jacket.