Tuesday, March 23, 2010

The Bayby trench part 6: Lining

Ok, so now I'm on to the lining. I needed to cut the sleeves from satin because I didn't have enough of the plaid cotton, but I like satin lined sleeves anyway as it is so much easier to slide them on over clothing. Dealing with a small child this is even more necessary!

To create a pattern for the sleeve lining I folded up the hem allowance on the pattern pieces and traced the stitching line with a dotted line, then added seam allowance and drew that with a solid line. Thanks to the sunlight on my desk it's hard to see the folded up allowance on the larger piece, but it does show up on the smaller one.

When pinning the pattern to the fabric I just overlapped the two pieces along their seamlines and folded up the bottom to my new marked cutting line. Couldn't be easier!

Here's where it gets interesting. I have long been a fan of sewing the sleeve seam, sewing the lining seam, and then joining them in the round. I knew it gives a flatter finish, but hadn't thought about why till last night when I stumbled across two brilliant blog posts regarding dominant seams. One from the ever-informative Fashion Incubator and one from The Bitchin' Stitch . I have always preferred to sew my seams the way Kathleen does it, but seeing her examples was still an eye opener!

Anyway, sewing small tubes together can be fiddly so I've figured out a method that works well for me. Simple really, I place my pins perpendicular to the seam on the outside, and sew on the inside (since that little tube won't fit over my free arm.) The pins don't catch on the inside of the tube as I'm sewing it this way, and I just find it easier. If anyone has a better idea, I would dearly love them to share!

When finished and pressed the sleeve looks like this. Nice and smooth and flat.

On to the lining for the body. I cut the back lining from the same pattern as the coat, so it needs to have a bit chopped out for the facing. To do this I marked a new cutting line on the opposite side of the stitching line on the facing piece, folded carefully along it and pinned it in place on the back. I don't bother trying to pin the folded up edge flat, because around a curve this gets fiddly. I just crease on the line and let it stand up. Then I just cut around it, following the creased line, starting at the folded edge (on the left). The fabric there is the pleat allowance for the back.

Dominant seams come into play here too. I'd joined my facings before attaching the lining and ended up edgestitching the back facing after I'd sewn the lining to it to help it sit nice and flat.

I'm ignoring the bottom edge of the facing/lining and hem for the moment while I move on to the sleeves. I have a lot of layers of fabric at the sleeve seam, so I basted each edge first. Why make life hard when a couple of extra minutes will ensure each layer stays where it should?

In a coat for myself I'd have sewn the sleeve (without the lining) to the body of the coat and then slipstitched the sleeve lining over it for a perfect finish, but this is a coat for a two year old. I'm going to bind the armhole seam, which will look lovely, but is easy and quicker to do.

And here's the bit I was dying to get to - one set-in sleeve means I can almost see how the coat is going to look!

After I set in the other sleeve I still have quite a lot of finishing to do - the wrinkly looking neck edge is bothering me, but won't be topstitched till I've organised the hem.
But it's getting there!

Beangirl, you ask if I sleep. The answer for last night is "No, not really" but that was thanks to one small person who thought that midnight till 3.45am was playtime. I'm so used to nights like this that I can carry on sewing regardless. I'm too tired to do the vacuuming though.


  1. Our small people must be in collusion - mine was up at the same time! And I didn't vacuum either. Got the fly into a pair of pants though. It's all about priorities.

  2. That coat is going to be darling! Hope you get a good night's sleep soon!

  3. This is looking adorable! Can't wait to see the finished product.
    Hope N behaves tonight for you.

  4. vacuuming is never a priority, as far as I'm concerned. I would say that I'm so happy now that mine are finally old enough to sleep at night, except that last night TLo was up about ten times and not only that but carrying ON with tantrums and the whole thing. We have some willfulness issues.

    I can't wait to see this finished and I hope you can get a modelled photo of it!

  5. I'm so impressed by all your sewing, but particularly this jacket. It's nothing short of amazing. You will have the most smartly dressed baby in the entire world when it's finished.