Spicy Tweed Blazer

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I’m a pretty big fan of sewing with wool. Back when I was maybe 12, my mom decided to teach me about sewing with wool. We chose this amazing Black Watch tartan plaid wool and a matching evergreen wool from Britex in San Francisco, where we were on a family vacation at the time. (Side note: Britex is amazing–it’s like a way better organized Mood, with floor to ceiling shelves of fabric bolts and library ladders. You can imagine what an impression this made on me as a 12 year-old.) That summer, she helped me make a classic kilt skirt and matching vest. I learned about using pressing cloths, steam, vinegar, and the general delight of soft, spongy wool. At the South Dakota State Fair, I won a sewing competition with that outfit and received my very own sewing machine as first prize. It was a pretty big deal.

Anyway, back to this jacket. I have had this fabric for, oh my gosh, maybe 15 years? It is a lovely piece of Pendleton that I received at a Make It Yourself With Wool contest in my teenage years. I have a particular weakness for herringbone, and this is a special one, with alternating shades of cinnamon and yellow-ish brown. This is my first foray into jacket making in quite some time, and although the results aren’t perfect, I’m pretty happy with this result. (I’m not sure why it looks like the fronts are off-kilter in the photo above–I must have been standing somewhat off-kilter, or maybe I have one shoulder slightly higher than the other?)

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I used an old Vogue basic pattern for a lined, two-button jacket with princess seams that I can’t seem to find online anywhere. (Geez, I can’t even find something similar from the Big 4 at the moment.) I like the cut of this jacket quite a bit–it’s curvy and feminine while also being sort of basic and Brit-chic. I’m not going to deny that there are fit issues: I took out quite a bit of volume above the bust on the front and could potentially remove more, it appears that I need a swayback adjustment to rid myself of those wrinkles in the back (thanks to my curvaceous hips and large arse), and I might need to do a slight full bust adjustment or something in the front. But, whatever.

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I had a scant 1 1/2 yards of this fabric, which was barely enough to eke out the main pieces of this jacket. I chose to use some tie silk for the under collar and for the underside of the pocket flaps in the front, which adds some whimsical interest. I had a bit of an issue setting the undercollar in one spot, so it doesn’t lay perfectly (with the collar down, though, no one is the wiser!). I also could’ve improved my collar pressing with a proper pressing ham. Oh well–lessons for next time. My welt pockets turned out nicely, and I also made bound buttonholes for the gold blazer buttons that I picked up at Fleishman Fabrics here in Philly.

IMG_5468I love the feminine, classic hacking jackets Boden produces, and I’m pretty happy with this as my homemade version. I have another one planned in black and white with a grosgrain ribbon trim, so I’ll have another chance to fix some of the fit issues on this pattern and also be able to practice my plaid-matching!

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10 thoughts on “Spicy Tweed Blazer

  1. I love, love, love this jacket! And I agree…Britex does sound like a dream. Our small town does not have a lot to offer with fabric stores, and I like to touch and feel my fabrics before I buy them πŸ™‚

  2. Gah! This jacket has me swooning. It is just awesome: the fabric, the colour, the lovely details. I want to reach into the screen and touch it! As for the fit issues, I can’t really see hem from over here but if they really bother you can (i) think about the fact that ready to wear often fits wonky and the fit on this is much better; and (ii) make another one to fix those issues (i.e. more wool, more herringbone jackets!)

    • Thanks, Andrea! I’m not really too bothered by the fit issues–I view this project (and all others) as a learning experience, really, so I’m already planning on making another jacket from this pattern at some point, hopefully this winter.

  3. Great fit on the jacket and lovely fabric. I remember you from PR some years back and you were the first person to introduce me to Boden style! Welcome back to blogging πŸ™‚

    • Thanks for the positive feedback and for remembering me! Law school meant that I put away my sewing machine for a few years, but I’m excited to be back in the saddle!

  4. What a great little jacket, that fabric is beautiful! I really want to dig into some tailored jackets. I’ve been looking through your other posts too, and am loving everything you’ve made!

  5. Pingback: Winter’s last stand | IN THE SELVAGE

  6. okay so i just found your blog through the giveaway that you just won…and my jaw is dropping at this jacket. totally great and so are all the other beautiful things you make!

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