Tag Archives: burdastyle

Turquoise Jeans Jacket – Jalie 2320 Frankenpattern

This jacket has been in the sewing room for eight months now and I was on the verge of pitching it several times.   It’s not like me to have UFO’s hanging around. Things will often come back for changes or alterations, but nothing has ever sat here and taunted me, unfinished, like this one.


Wanted! Jeans jacket with curvy feminine fit, interesting style lines and details, a yoke, and fitted sleeves. There was an article in Threads #123 on jeans jackets and they compared the fit of several brands. This led me to make muslins of the following:

  • Silhouettes jeans jacket – too plain/simple, boxy fit.
  • Burda Young 7018 – too plain/simple, no pockets!
  • Jalie 2320 – nice style lines with inset front panel, welt pockets and pocket flaps, but a boxy fit with shallow sleeve caps.


For the final pattern I used BurdaStyle 02/2011 #127 (soon to be posted) for the two-piece collar, two-piece sleeves, and shaped fit.  I then redrafted it with most of the style lines and details of the Jalie. I also made a contoured waistband which none of the others had and I think that makes a big difference.

The fabric is an inexpensive home-dec fabric, a cotton twill with ZERO give. Mistake. I think I got it at Osgood’s in Western Mass.

Except for adding a matching lining, most of the construction techniques follow the Jalie instructions. I still wanted the pockets to be accessible from the inside like the Jalie pattern so I did some special sequencing and made it work with the lining. You can see I added a plaid binding to the pocket edge on the inside.  The buttons are typical metal jeans buttons.  I really don’t like the way the collar, cuff and waistband are put on.  It’s all traditional jeans jacket construction with all the visible stitching but I couldn’t figure out a better way.  I added a sleeve head too; I know, don’t say it….


What got me hung up for so long was the topstitching, especially at the collar and placket which was nasty. I ended up doing it four times and it’s still not up really up to my standards. My original plan was to find a heavy top stitching thread that matched the fashion fabric but it was nowhere to be found. I also tried a triple stitch and different needles. I tried a darker thread to see if it would be less noticeable and ended up with a cotton thread a shade lighter than the fashion fabric. Grrrr. My machine just doesn’t like anything over three layers of this stuff. I haven’t had trouble with denim in the past so I thought this would be fine.


Hmm.., looks like I STILL need to slope the shoulders some more, and possibly do a tiny FBA. I can still see some horizontal wrinkles just below the arm on the right side. I could take in the sleeves a bit and narrow the back.

I will definitely be making another one of these now that I have the pattern and fit mostly worked out, but I won’t be using the heaviest fabric in the world. (I think this one could stand up by itself!) I’ve got some linen and am thinking of quilting the yoke. I am also on the hunt for some brightly colored denim, or corduroy.

Lessons Learned: Don’t use heavy upholstery fabric for anything other than upholstery.

Have you had success with heavy upholstery fabric?


The Closet Spreadsheet: The big S.W.A.P.

The next part of my plan was to work out a 12 piece wardrobe using Nancy Nix-Rice’s strategy of two coordinating neutrals plus an accent color. For the first neutral I chose brown because I already have a lot of brown pieces in my closet. The second neutral is camel. I like a rich warm camel and it’s been hard to find. Mostly I see tan or khaki which are not the best colors for me. I finally found some RPL at Emma One Sock in a lovely shade of camel so I bought 5 yards.

RPL in “Camel” from Emma One Sock

Next I included the list of infill pieces from my spreadsheet, then added needed tops that I have also been tracking. I have also added in a few needed casual and dressy pieces.  (Both my casual and dressy wardrobes are pathetic and require a study of their own.)

Unless noted otherwise, I plan to sew everything on the list though I am not tying myself to any timelines.  No really, this will take me two years to produce.

A. Neutral 1 -Brown – (two tops and two bottoms required.) I’ve already got the following in my wardrobe so I’m all set here: Pants, Skirt, Jacket, vee neck long sleeve top, scoop neck 3/4 sleeve top, and turtleneck.

BurdaStyle 08/2012 #137

B. Neutral 2 -Camel – (two tops and two bottoms required)  I see these pieces as being quite important as they will help move me away from all that black in my closet.

  • Pencil Skirt (in stash)
  • Pants (in stash)
  • Jacket (in stash) BurdaStyle 08/2012 #137 is currently at the top of the list.
  • Caramel knit tee (for brown jacket)  (in stash)
  • Also should buy a short-waisted cashmere camel cardi which will work well with my teal slinky dress.

C. Solid Accent tops – (top and matching jacket) Probably teal, but could be turquoise, mint green, or pale pink. How to choose just one?

  • Jacket – I think if I find the right jacket fabric, the rest will fall into place.
  • Teal knit top with high vee collar (to work w teal/taupe tweed jacket)

Also loose chunky tealish/tweedy turtleneckish sweater – to buy? Learn to knit?
Note existing slinky dress in teal doesn’t work with jacket, needs sweater.

D. Matching print top and bottom – this is the tough one.

  • I’ll need to spend some time on Polyvore thinking about what a printed bottom/skirt might be. All I can think of is a loose gathered silk skirt and blouse which is not me. I prefer more shaped garments. I’m thinking of a pencil skirt and a sleeveless shell so I need to find a fabric that will work for both.  Hello Spoonflower.
  • For a top I have a jersey print with teal, brown, and camel. (in stash)
  • Shirt with camel and brown stripes; not enough for both a top and bottom. (in stash)

E. Infill pieces for work wardrobe

  • Long winter coat (in stash)
  • Jacket for red skirt -navy refashion or make (in stash)
  • Cream pants (in stash) for mint and grey boucle jackets. Might also work with the grey jacket?
  • Charcoal Grey pants for grey jacket, ponte?
  • Cream scoop neck tee for green sweater
  • Tan tank for yellow tahari jacket (in stash)
  • Loose white woven scoop tank (in stash)
  • Navy tee rayon v neck w half sleeves (in stash)
  • Blouse w/ shawl collar for navy jacket, red?  (in stash)Pale pink? (in stash)
  • Orange Scarf for blue polka dot dress – to buy

Casual wear

  • Linen jeans jacket for chinos and summerwear,  Wheat? (in stash) Red?
  • White denim jeans a la Jackie O. (in stash)
  • Colored jeans -teal?, camel?
  • A new pair of Indigo jeans.
  • Shorts

Dressy wear

  • Warm non-black sweater/top or jacket for out to dinner -sequins? Brown, green, or turquoise velvet?

I had a few pieces of icing on the list but removed them.  They were mostly one-off dresses that would be fun but just aren’t as versatile as the skirt/top combos.  This lists above total about 26 garments.  Oy!   The most important pieces are the ones for work, and of those, the infill pieces should come first.  I’m thinking that I should push through the tees and tanks first.  They’re boring, but fast and versatile.  I was going to start on the winter coat next, but it’s too late in the season.  I typically sew “in the season”, but I should consider making the coat in the summer or fall.

I think I should also work on pieces that I already have in my stash.  I have about 36 pieces and am pleased to see that 13 of them are tied to a garment listed above.

OK, now that I’ve layed this out in public, I’m going to have to print it out and pin it up on my studio wall to use as my guide.  Wish me luck!

BurdaStyle #114 04/2010 – The Chambray Shirt

I’m pretty excited about my new make as it’s my first shirt. Shirtmaking had been floating to the top of my list but jumped to first place when my ASG group decided that 2014 would be the Year of the Blouse.


This is Burdastyle #114 from April 2010 which is a classic style shirt with yoke, collar and collar stand, cuffs, and bust darts. I figured I had plenty to learn about shirtmaking without getting too fancy so I went with an inexpensive cotton Chambray that I got from Metro textiles in NYC last summer.

BurdaStyle 04/2010 #114 Line Drawing

The only pattern alterations I made were to fit the yoke and shoulders and move the bust dart a bit. It’s not a very fitted style to start with so it wasn’t that difficult to fit. I also omitted the useless pocket at the bust.  Also, to maintain a clean line under a jacket, I eliminated the loop at the back of the yoke.

To make this I used all of the techniques and instructions from David Page Coffin’s Shirtmaking with two exceptions. Mr. Coffin instructs you to remove the ease at the sleeve cap which I did not do since I was using a pattern with a reasonably deep cap. I also inserted the sleeves in the round after stitching the side seams. This is opposite from his recommended sequence in which the sleeves are inserted flat before stitching the side and underarm seam. I even used welt seams to attach the sleeves. I wasn’t sure I could even attach the sleeves flat due to the ease, but I just saw Pam Howard do this in her Craftsy video class with a similarly shaped sleeve so maybe I’ll try installing it flat next time.



IMG_8689[My dressform is a little bit larger than me and in reality there are no strain lines at the bust.]

This make had a whole series of firsts for me which made it a challenge, but also made it quite satisfying:

  • First welt seams. Not too hard if you have the right seam allowances. I would like to try again with a welting foot to see if I can make it a bit neater.
  • First collar stand. Yikes, this is tedious work. There has got to be an easier method out there somewhere. The stand is tiny, and the two sides have to match, and then there’s the topstitching out there for everyone to see, right near your face!
  • First successful rolled hem. I think I finally got the knack of the rolled hemmed foot. Yeah me!
  • First use of a glue stick for basting. Not a bad idea.

I’ve collected a few fabrics that are destined to become shirts so I’m glad that this was a successful introduction. Now I need to decide whether to re-use the same pattern or to fit a new one. I would rank shirtmaking somewhere between pants and jackets in terms of difficulty, and easier than both in terms of fitting. I certainly could have pulled out the serger to speed things up a bit but it might be considered cheating. I found only one RTW shirt with serged seams in our closet.

Lessons learned:

  • Don’t over think the button locations. I shifted them down an inch to align with the bust point but now it’s a teensy bit too low.
  • Front of right armhole needs another 3/4″ or so removed to eliminate wrinkles below the arm. Requires right and left front pieces as well as right and left arms. I wasn’t ready to go there for this make.

Have you made a classic tailored shirt? How did you handle the collar? Do you cheat?