I probably say this about a lot of projects, but I really mean it this time. This coat is my favorite project to date. From the fabric to the pattern, I’m giddy just thinking about how much I love it. It almost makes me wish it stayed cold year-round, so I could wear it every day.
Where to begin with this one…I think I’ll start with the pattern.
This one is Closet Case Patterns’ Clare Coat. I’d never made a Closet Case pattern before, but when I saw this coat, I immediately added it to my project list. I loved the asymmetrical front, the in-seam pockets and that oversized funnel collar. Oh, and let’s talk about the zipper. I absolutely loved the zipper shown with view B on the Closet Case website.
It wasn’t until I got the pattern in the mail that I realized the zipper was a bit of a pattern hack. The zippered version was created by Heather of Closet Case Patterns and is featured on the brand’s blog. View B was originally designed with a button or snap closure. However, having set my heart on the zippered version, I was not dissuaded by this minor detail. Substituting a zipper for the buttons was quite easy. The most difficult part was making sure I got everything lined up properly. I measured A LOT and used the lines on my fabric to get everything straight. After all the time and attention to detail I’d invested, I didn’t want a wonky zipper. I ended up using a 27” aluminum zipper, which left a few inches unzipped at the bottom of the coat.
I really enjoyed sewing this pattern. The instructions were clear and easy to follow, and I didn’t need to make any sizing alterations! Woohoo! The instructions also come in the form of a booklet, so it was like reading a delightful sewing story that resulted in an awesome coat. Aside from being easy to follow, the instructions also included a number of finishing touches to make the finished garment look clean and professional. My favorite of these was the option to add a loop in the back neck facing, to use when hanging the coat.
I’ve had my eyes on Closet Case Patterns’ Ginger Jeans for a while now, and after the success of their Clare Coat, I may need to bump this up my list a bit. Seeing how detailed their instructions are, I feel more confident in attempting my first pair of me-made jeans.
I suppose I should get to the fabric. I ordered both fabrics from Mood, and the main fabric is this lime and black checkered wool. Isn’t it cool?! The weave of this fabric reminds me of Neo seeing The Matrix. It also kind of reminds me a bit of snake skin. Either way, I thought it was some of the most unique coating fabric I’ve seen in a while. The texture on the front side of the fabric is soft and fuzzy, while the polyester backing provides some nice structure.
To compliment my Matrix fabric, I chose a solid black wool. Mood has a lot of choices in this category, but I finally settled on this Black Luxurious Wool Coating. Never has a fabric more lived up to its name. Not only is the color a nice deep black, but it’s soft, has a lovely drape and sewed up like a dream – definitely the nicest wool I’ve ever used. I decided to use this fabric for the collar as well as the sleeves, to give the coat a strong color-blocked look. I also thought it would be way less itchy around my face than the fuzzy lime and black fabric.
For the lining, I used a polyester charmeuse I picked up at JoAnns. I’m always hesitant when using polyester linings, but silk charmeuse is so expensive! This however, pleasantly surprised me. It was easy to sew and makes for a nice silky lining at about the quarter the cost of actual silk.
I have no idea why I don’t make more coats. This was an extremely satisfying project, and I feel like such a cool girl when I put it on (I think it’s that collar!). As you can see in the photos, it’s snowing here…and has been quite a bit lately. This makes for some fun outdoor photo shoots (I love the snow) and gives me plenty of opportunities to sport my new coat.
Until next time,