I have made all my winter coats for over 30 years and have no desire to purchase a rtw one. I have found that the coats I make are much warmer, last longer and of course, fit better. Because of past success in sewing coats, I have joined the sew-along started and run by Marji. When she first came up with this idea on her blog, I thought what a great idea--anyway I could use a new winter coat. Sewing one before you actually need it is an even better idea. In the past, I've started my winter coats in November, maybe not as bad as December, but I put myself under a time constraint.
My biggest problem was deciding on a pattern. I have a few in my pattern stash, but nothing looked right for the fabrics I had. I scoured the internet looking for the perfect pattern, checking out all the newer patterns, but also looking at all the vintage pattern sites. Then I kept changing my mind about which fabric to use since I had a couple choices in my stash. Back and forth I went. As for fabric I have a wool tweed in different shades of grey and brown, but also I had just purchased a beautiful taupe wool/cashmere coating in Paris. I finally decided that the taupe wool needed a really special pattern. Since I could not find any pattern at the moment which I felt was worthy of this fabric, it was to remain in the stash until the perfect pattern came to my attention.
So for my coat I chose the grey/brown tweed which I purchased from Emma One Sock last year. This fabric should be easy to work with as tweeds can be very forgiving. I still need to get lining, but should have that within a week. I'm still looking for buttons, too and can't decide if I want to make bound buttonholes or machine one. I think I will make both--a test bound buttonhole and a machine buttonhole--to help me decide. I also love topstitching, but think it might be lost in this fabric. I'll have to test that, too.
As for my pattern, I wanted a coat that just hit the top of my knees so it would look good with both pants and coordinating skirts. I finally settled on Vogue 7978 which should be easy to fit. I'm making the grey single breasted coat which I feel will look great in this fabric. This week I plan to start working on the pattern fitting and preparing my fabric.
Well, some ladies are making more than one coat. That was certainly not my original intention. But, hey, I had this marvelous vintage pattern and some lovely green wool I purchased from Emma One Sock (again!) which would work out great for a short coat. So if I can really get my act together, I plan to make the little coat shown in orange on the pattern envelope. I still need to find a great lining and single button for this, too. Maybe in the near future, I will tackle the suit to wear under it. But for the time being, I think this will look great with pants if I make it a little shorter.