Friday, November 6, 2015

Blue Jean Lady~L.A . Baby, Seamstress For The Band~~Elton John

I'm not a blue jean lady, L.A. lady or a seamstress for a band (I kinda missed that window of opportunity!) but here I find myself with a new denim jacket.

My sewing pal, Janet, collected dozens of old jeans for a project she has now abandoned and is gifting her stash of cut-up, pre-washed and ironed pieces to lucky friends.  All of the hard work was done!

I've been "off" jeans for many years; one day they were just uncomfortable so I stopped wearing them.  And I don't think blue denim looks particularly good on me.  But when an opportunity presents itself it could be looked on as a challenge.

That was the case when I visited my friend Sharon in Seattle last month.  On my guest bed lay two huge bundles of denim, shipped by Janet who knew I'd be there.  She gave some to Sharon, too.  At first I groaned.  Oy, denim...
But then I lived with them for another week while on Lopez Island and they grew on me.  So I shipped them home to Capitola, knowing exactly what I would do with them.

Vogue 8709 is one of my favorite Marcy Tilton patterns. Sad to say it is out of print.  What a shame, it's so versatile!   I've used it for jackets, vests and shirts.  I've lengthened it permanently now because my favorite silhouette is longer.  I've also omitted a pleat in the lower center back.

I had fun piecing the scraps and had tons of help from a new pal, JM, who made the job so much easier.  We both worked on the layout and sewing the scraps, it would have taken me twice as long to finish that part without her!  JM, you are a true friend!  I love collaborating, it's one of my favorite things to do.

I decided I wanted to topstitch in heavy black thread.  I didn't have my new, trusty Bernina 560 with me when I started so most of the topstitching is done single thickness with a slightly heavy thread.  When I got home I did the hem and collar detail with the Bernina stitch that goes over each stitch twice making a more pronounced line of stitching.

It's all flat sewn so that the raw edges show on all of the interior pattern piecing, then sewn together with closed seams.  I purposely tried not to match anything.  I wanted this to seem more casual, less designer-ish.

I tried several closures, originally wanting black buttons which overtook the thing like a swarm of huge beetles.  Next I tried some toggle closures for purses, they were too heavy and weird to install.  I settled with these copper buttons, not sure I love them but I can always find something else if they start really bugging me.  I just had to git her done!

I made the sleeves using a very deep hem so that I can turn up them for warmer weather.

Overall, I'm really happy with this jacket.  Tonight is First Friday in Santa Cruz.  We'll be wandering around downtown looking at art in what has turned cold weather.  I think I might inaugurate this beast!