Behind the scenes there have been emails going out to the Lekala-along participants, hopefully keeping them on track and sewing! Three of us have finished our jackets, and I have a strong suspicion that there are still a couple who haven’t started. Just to update you and provide a blog record, I’ll include my “instructional” emails from the past few weeks.
Week 4 – Lekala instruction 5. Construct the collar. Sew the right collar to the left collar at the centre back seam. Repeat with the facing pieces. Sew the outer collar to the collar facing with right sides together along the outer edges. Grade seams, possibly understitch, and turn to the right side and press. Pin to the neckline, matching notches and centre back seam, and the lower edge of the right collar to the hem markings on the bottom of the right lower front, and the lower edge of the left collar to the pivot point on the left upper front. Baste into place.
Week 5 – Lekala instruction 7. Insert sleeve heads, sleeves and shoulder pads.
Week 6 – Attach the facing and assemble the lining.
In terms of the lining, it consists of the Lining parts as per the Lekala instructions BUT in effect also includes one the main fabric lower front part (times 2), the main fabric lower back part, the main fabric button stand (times 2) and the back neckline facing. The main fabric button stand and the back neckline facing are sewn together to form facings for the entire front, and the lower front/lower back parts effectively form facings for the bottom “peplum” part. Clear as mud? These will eventually be sewn to the lining pieces – but we’ll get to that bit later as well. At this stage if you ignore the “attention” part of the instructions and just cut the lining pieces for the front part and back part from the main pattern pieces, that will be fine and we’ll trim them to the correct size to be joined to the facing pieces (back neck plus button stand pieces) later on. By the way, I cut the back lining piece so that I could incorporate a centre back pleat for wearing ease.
In the photos you can see that I have cut out the lining pieces the same size as the outer garment pieces (with the added centre back pleat already sewn in place). Then I laid the facing pieces on top, with the raw edges even, and made marks around the edge of the facing pieces. If you look carefully you can see them. I then remarked TWICE THE SEAM ALLOWANCE inside those markings. When I say inside, I mean closer to the raw edge. If you look carefully you can see that too. Then I cut along that line. After that I sewed the facing pieces to the lining pieces, knowing that I had allowed for the seam allowances. It sounds weird, but it works. You should then have facing/lining pieces that correspond in size to the outer fabric pieces. Sew all the facing/lining pieces together, leaving a centre back gap for turning through later. Sew the lining sleeves on too. Then you’ll effectively have two jackets – one of the outer fabric and one of the lining/facings.
Week 7 – Insert the lining.
This is where it is useful to use whatever references that you have about lining jackets. There are plenty of web references that are helpful to get you into the right headspace, even though they might not exactly apply to this style of jacket. One that I particularly like is this one from Threads.
Essentially, turn your outer jacket inside out, then put the lining inside it so the right sides are together. Pin everything in place, matching all essential seams and markings etc, then stitch. You can then turn it around the right way through the gap that you left in the back of the peplum seam, and the body of your jacket will be lined. Next you need to sew the sleeve lining to the sleeve hems. There are a couple of ways to do this. You can turn them hems of both the jacket outer and the sleeve to the inside and hand-stitch them together, or you can do it by machine working through the opening in the back lining. Just make sure that you pin things carefully so that the lining sleeve isn’t twisted inside the outer sleeve!
Week 8 – Any finishing details.
Sew up that gap in the back lining, make the buttonholes and sew on the buttons, and press your jacket! Voila!
And guess what – this is Week 8, so those of you who haven’t finished, how about finishing during the school/Easter holidays, and we’ll kick off the new term with our new jackets?