i have a terrible backlog of projects, but i wanted to get this one on the blog because i’m super in love with how it came out! making my kids’ outerwear has accidentally become a thing around these parts, and my poor daughter anastasia has been wearing one of my a smidge too small for me zip hoodies in lieu of an actual jacket. while she loves wearing it (and i’m pretty sure i’ll never get it back), she needs a “real” jacket. i had a hard time deciding what kind of jacket to make her, but finally went with simplicity 2534.
i’ve always liked this pattern. it has options: long or short, double or single breasted, mandarin or regular collar, etc—as much as i tend to eschew franchise branded stuff, those project runway patterns really are the best. i decided to go for a trench jacket type look so i picked up a dark purple cotton sateen and a fun animal print lining. after washing the sateen i was concerned that it would end up being too thin and drape-y, and almost changed patterns. but, i stuck with my original plan, and it seems to be just fine. to help increase the structure, i decided to double topstitch my seams. this definitely helped, and i love the look. but you know how i am… TOPSTITCH ALL THE THINGS.
the pattern doesn’t include separate lining pieces so i used jen’s tutorial to make sure there would be enough ease in the back and at the armholes (a jacket is one of those garments where the lining is slightly larger than the shell). i didn’t draft a paper pattern for the lining, instead i just laid the shell pieces on top of my lining fabric and eyeballed the extra. not my typical modus operandi, but this is one of those cases where it’s okay.
now for the nitty gritty
sizing: she actually measures around a size 6 in width, but an 8 in height. i considered cutting a 7 and adding length, but i really didn’t have time to fiddle with the pattern so i cut a straight size 8. it is a jacket, and there will be layers underneath, so there was no need to fit it closely.
pattern quirks: the lining. i totally get if they don’t bother with separate lining pieces, i paid $1 for this pattern so i have no reason to be picky. but, like i mentioned above, i went ahead and added the extra ease to the lining to make sure it would be comfortable.
this jacket has a free-hanging lining. i knew the lining would have to be shorter than the shell pieces, but i couldn’t for the life of me find where the directions said by how much. i searched the directions, and finally i found it listed along with the cutting layout—it says to press the shell pattern pieces up 1″ when you cut the lining. now, i totally did not see that until i searched for it. i read the directions probably 10 times before i finally located the information, and i could easily see someone blowing by that little detail. and, if you’ve never made a jacket before, you may not know to look for it. if you missed that detail, when you go to attach the lining to the facing pieces you would run into trouble and have to go back, unpick your lining hem, and redo. so, just a little PSA if you’re making this jacket.
i added bar tacks at the pocket openings for extra sturdiness.
aditions: i added a hanging loop because, well duh. i also added stays between the lining and shell (see two thirds of the way down this post for what i’m talking about). the jacket has inseam side pockets and i regret not adding inseam welt pockets at the front panel seaming. oh well…
everything was easy breezy construction-wise and i managed to sew it up over two days. i did myself a huge favor and, before cutting my fabric, i trimmed down the SA on the pattern to 3/8″. folks. if you’ve never known the singular joy that is sewing with small SA’s, do yourself a favor and try it sometime. i knew i wouldn’t need to make size adjustments, so i was able to just plow through. serious time saver!
quick note on the topstitching… there were a few places where i wasn’t sure about whether, or how i should go about topstitching, namely the front panel. i ended up topstitching that edge and going up to meet the topstitching at the collar. then i had no interest in hand stitching the hem, so i topstitched that as well, but not across the front because the lining would have been in the way and it didn’t seem right since that part didn’t need hemming. imo, the topstitching gives the jacket a great finish and adds structure to the light-ish weight fabric. all in all i am very pleased with this jacket, and natch she’s in love with it!
now, off to work on some halloween sewing… the days are ticking by!