It started getting cold here (well, cold for South Florida) early last month. I don’t really have every day type coats/jackets so I thought I’d make a fleece one and keep it simple but feminine. I chose this pattern because of all the options and somewhere along the way I decided to go with the extravagant sleeves. In general, this coat was NOT what I was after. It wasn’t easy nor simple. It wasn’t difficult to make per se but it was time consuming, especially since the bodice’s facing is hand sewn to the bodice. I didn’t realize that until it was too late so I sucked it up and sewed it by hand. I always said I’d never sew anything by hand, I had to eat my words. I made view A with the sleeves from view C.
I found that the way this coat was faced made the horizontal seam too bulky. There are four layers of fleece there because the facing’s seam allowance is folded under and the raw edges hidden. The amount of fleece on the front neck edge is even worse. There layers there are as follows, bodice, bodice facing, and two layers of collar. The area where the collar starts at the front, on either side, is even worse. There are two extra layers because that’s where the collar’s seam allowances are and that’s a total of 6 layers of fleece! It was crazy, I wish I had taken a picture. Surprisingly enough, my sewing machine didn’t have too much trouble sewing through all that. I did use a walking foot, I don’t think I could have done it otherwise.
I actually started this coat last month when it was still cold but with Christmas and New Year’s holidays, I didn’t get much work done on it. I finally finished the coat early this week and it’s not even cold anymore. Typical. It was 70 something degrees out when we were taking the pictures. The neighbors must have thought I was crazy. Not that they’d be wrong.
So, while this coat isn’t what I was trying to achieve in terms of simplicity and every day wear capabilities, I like it and I’m happy with it. I tried to make the inside look as neat as the outside and I think I did a pretty good job. My hand sewing is sloppy at best but I made sure to do it in a way that it wasn’t visible at all. I’m not sure about the sleeves though. I can’t decide whether I really like the sleeves or they are over the top. I think I like them. Maybe I like them BECAUSE they are over the top. I may make another of the views with less crazy sleeves.