Sewing and textiles with Ann
When I went to the Sewing Bee Live in September, i had every intention of buying this pattern for the Bianca ‘coatigan’. I saw Jules’ sample at the event in Birmingham in March, but she hadn’t released the pattern then.
It took me about a morning to make it. It took me longer to contemplate the size and length to cut, and will probably take me all winter to decide whether, and where, I want to add buttons, or some other form of permanent fastening. I’ve worn it a few times and it looks really elegant and smart. Its also quite warm when folded across my body and pinned close to the left shoulder. The more I wear it, the more I think I won’t add buttons, but there is still plenty of winter left during which I could change my mind.
The fabric is fleece from a stall on the indoor market in Birmingham.: cost £12.50, and there is some left over which could well become a coat for my great niece.
You might just spot a matching mitten in the middle picture!
I was aware of the possibility of quite a bit of ease. That could well be useful for a winter cover up, in as much as it can cover thick and thin indoor wear. Length was also critical as I wanted it to cover my tunic length tops, but only just. Most of the time that I go out, I am in the car, and I dont really like long coats in the car. So I paper fitted the size as per my measurements over a long tunic top. It was a bit tricky coping with a rolling collar in paper, but afte some re-measuring and adjustment of the length, I have got what I want. As long as it’s too long, it’s always possible to adjust when you finish the bottom of the coat. But not if it’s too short!
As per Jules’ suggestion, I finished in a contrast colour, on the overlocker. The only tricky part is the snip at the shoulder. I tacked it, to be sure that it stayed in place.
I thought I’d got it right first time, but from the outside I detected a tiny hole, which I fixed by hand. As is often the case, I had to shorten the sleeves by about 6 cm. Again, as long as they are too long you can adjust the length when you finish them.
And now to wear it, and see how the drape behaves when it’s fastened in various places. I now have a broach permanently pinned to it to serve as a trial fastening. Maybe it will stay like that. I know that there are some similar coats with fastenings in John Lewis which I will go and study (again) one day, whilst wearing Bianca.
So, as it stands, the pattern has cost me more than the fabric, so I will have to use the pattern again….. I keep offering to make them for friends, but so far no-one has taken me up on the offer. But I have had requests for the mittens!