Monday, 4 November 2013

My Sewaholic Minoru - out in nature

Took a long time to cut this one out!  Mental preparation, too.  Even halfway through sewing, I wasn't sure I was ever going to finish!  It felt like a very unmanageable project, and I think without the sewalong I wouldn't have felt ready to undertake it.  Even with the sewalong, it was difficult.  I can't imagine myself making another one...

I cut a size 4, tapering to a size 0 below the waist, and I took out 2 inches at the waist that meant I didn't have to taper much.  I was initially nervous that it would be too small in the shoulders.  Everyone's Minorus have been quite long and baggy so I went down a size for a pretty tight fit since it's a spring jacket for me.  My measurements would have had me cutting a size 6, and my 6 Lonsdale was spot on.  Because of that, when I sewed the sideseam I basted a 1/4" seam allowance, and that was what I used, then tapering at the waist elastic out to 5/8" (because of the side-seam pockets.)  The raglan sleeves fit my shoulders well in the end, and in fact it's quite loose - I could probably have used the normal seam allowance.

I didn't have any real problems sewing my Minoru until I got to the last few steps.  Between the clear instructions, the clear and helpful sewalong, and the many many comments and reviews already online, I felt well-educated before I began - so much that sometimes I knew about problems but without knowing when or where they might happen (mainly that you end up with unfinished seams inside the collar, that can be visible when the hood is out.  Also, I think some people lined both sides of the collar.)  Putting in the zip was surprisingly straightforward.  My pockets were as long as the jacket but I just sewed them into the hem, which holds them in place.  I should have skipped the second line of stitching on the hem, though, it made the pockets just a tiny bit too small.  They are definitely hand pockets, not safe pockets for wallet/keys.  I only made one inside pocket and used a button to hold it together.  When I got to the cuffs I started to have trouble - maybe I started rushing?  It took three tries and multiple different pinning attempts to get the cuffs sewn in using Tasia's machine method...the first one was soooo twisted and I had to redo it.  Then when I sewed in the ditch, I caught my lining on the other side and had to undo the entire thing.  And tucking the hem into the plackets at the bottom was a bit puzzling.  I don't seem to ever do that well and I always have a few loose unsewn edges hanging around.  They aren't obvious here so I don't care much.

Also how has anyone sewn the hem smoothly?  Since it's a circle, like a dress, I had to accept some overlapping and gathering on the inside when I sewed it down.  I couldn't identify any other way to do it, and the sewalong just blithely assumes it will be perfectly smooth.

It was often a challenge to manipulate so much fabric, and in such thick layers.  My sewing machine is on the short end of a table, and the jacket fell of the side of the table a few times, moving the line of stitches over just enough to be visible.
I have to admit, I'm really relieved this jacket is done with!  It took longer to make than I'm used to (also partly because I was busy!)  I like it a lot and I am happy with the changes I made, but it's not a silhouette that tempts me to make lots more.

The good news: spring is just starting so I finished my jacket in time!!  This is the first of my projects for the Fall Essentials sewalong (which in my case is the Spring-Summer essentials sewalong!). 


  1. Wow! Look at your beautiful long hair! and the jacket is gorgeous - and so complicated looking. Good job!

  2. Amazing jacket - well done. I have this but have not yet attempted it - can't decide on fabric!

    1. Yay! Thanks! I dreamed about it for about a month - literally - matching fabrics and linings and crazy wild things. But I think it's a good pattern to do in a really basic and reliable fabric with a crazy lining. If you like it enough, you can make more, after all!!