Saturday, 31 October 2015

Named Blair batwing jacket

Oooh, I sewed something...and it's not one of my patterns!!!

This here is my new favourite top pattern. It's not a new pattern, but rather new to me, the Blair batwing shirt by Named clothing. It's really simple and I've seen it made up on the internets before, but was eventually lured in to buy when they had a flash sale a couple of weeks ago. I need new pyjamas or house clothes and thought this made the perfect top for lounging. I was right because I immediately made a jersey version and have basically worn it everyday since! I plan to make more in jersey, but first had to give it a try in a woven and this is the result...

 I went on a fabulously fun and fabric filled day out to London this week to meet-up with the gorgeous Jo, Jenna and Jane (notice I'm the odd one out as the non 'J' name). One of the many fabrics I bought was this scrumptious quilted silk velvet. I only bought 1.5metres because that's all there was in this colour. The quantity definitely presented a challenge seeing's as it was very narrow, but I had in my head a bed jacket type thing. I have a vintage pink silk handmade bed jacket stashed away somewhere, which was the inspiration behind my final collection at uni, so this is a long standing love affair with the 'bed jacket'. There are some very cute quilted jacket patterns out there like this RDC one or this Grainline one, but I wanted a different shape and a bit more room. You must all know by now that I favour roomy silhouettes ;-)

 I didn't make a woven toile, but going from my jersey version (which has a relatively stable quality) I raised the neckline on the paper pattern pieces by 2cm at the front and the shoulders blending into the back, took 4cm off the hem and added 2cm to the centre front (plus seam allowance) for an overlap and to give me the option of adding a front fastening. I don't think I will add any front closure things, but it's nice to have options!

Construction was simple. I made an outer shell and lining shell and sewed the two together (rigt sides together) around the neck, centre fronts and bottom hem, but left a hole in the bottom hem so I could turn it back through. I machined the sleeve hems together before closing up the hole for minimal hand stitching. I did however under stitch the entire jacket by hand as silk velvet can be a tad tricksy and the less stressful and easier to control option was to do this by hand. I am pretty used to sewing with velvet from making plenty of curtains out of the stuff, so know how I want to handle it. Also the hand stitching gives a nice vintage feel to the whole thing!

The finished jacket is very light weight and soft and really easy to wear. I hope to wear it frequently rather than for special occasions. Silk velvet can seem a bit dressy or special, but it's too soft and scrummy to put away somewhere. I'm actually wearing it now and have been cuddling my snotty kids in it, doing the dishes etc... and it certainly makes me feel a bit like the queen of my house today!

Here I am wearing it with my Roberts dress and previously a Roberts jumpsuit made from some gorgeous Paul Smith shirting (sorry, but the Roberts pattern is officially my uniform). I want to wear the jacket with my PJ's, on the school run, to weddings and anywhere else I can possibly think of.

Look at those big sleeves!

I love this fabric so much, but it's impossible to convey it's texture and colour in a photo. Basically everyone should have some of this in their lives and roll around on it!

I didn't photograph this very well, but I did have to join in a small segment of fabric on the sleeve back because of the narrow fabric, but it is right under the arm and barely noticeable. 

This amazing lining is a fabulous viscose crepe from Regency rags and is also very vintage in feel as it is light and silky. The perfect marriage!

I really wanted to wait a while before blogging this to see if it is a 'real' hit, but I'm too excited and I think the fact that I'm already wearing it signals it must be. Do you find it's hard to tell sometimes? I often feel really excited after making something new, but then I can only really tell if it's really successful if I continue to reach for it.

Next up? I don't quite know yet. I'm not in desperate need of anything as I made a few Lindens last year that should come back into play now, as well as some Freemantle knits, which along with all my latest Roberts samples has kind of set me up for winter. PJ bottoms are NEEDED and I am going to use the Tilly and the Buttons pattern from her book, but other than that it's more sampling and maybe some selfless sewing. I'll be back soon I hope! x