Only the insane amateur sewist would attempt to make a lined wool coat in two days. Well butter my bum and call me Croissant, because I did it. Of course, I had help. Lots of help. Glorious help from the wonderful Stitch Sisters, Nikki and Rachel. Squeak!
The wrap around coat was designed by the Stitch Sisters themselves, and they are modelling their versions below.
This year Mr Z and I have opted for experiences over stuff for our birthday presents. He’s going on a snowboarding weekend, and I had a coat-making weekend in Bristol. With the actual real life Stitch Sisters! My daughter (7) explained it as thus to my step-daughter (9) “Its like you and me meeting Ariane Grande!” It really is. I’ve been watching their YouTube vlogs since they started and I get excited every time they release a new one, because I think YouTube is telly, plus in my head they are my actual friends.
Naturally I was ill because isn’t that always the way when you’ve paid for something amazing and you’re really excited to go? As soon as Nikki found out I was poorly I got the full Dr Nikki treatment: a 2-day course of lempsip, tea and cake, administered with care and Ken Dodd in hamster form novelty mugs. And bless her she was poorly too, so she wafted around emmitting kindness and menthol vapours.
The workshop is structured really well and you get all of your paper pattern pieces ready-cut. The instructions are taught very clearly, and also printed out so you can make another coat at home (you get to keep the pattern pieces too). On top of this they are on hand to cut out your fabric and help with pinning, they’ll even unpick your mistakes. Sewing elves!
Rachel fixed up my lining, showing me how to get it to sit right, and how to level it all off. Then she showed us some amazing witchcraft method of bagging it out and hemming it all at once. Whaaaaaaa?!
We were all helped to get a great fit, for example, I thought I would need to take the shoulders in a little as they were sticking out. Instead I was advised to make some little shoulder pads out of quilting batting to lift up and shape the shoulder.
I found this tutorial to help with making the shoulder pads. I decided I wanted to fill in about half an inch of space above the sleeve head.
And this tutorial for help with sewing the shoulder pads in. I love the subtle difference the shoulder pads make, I think my coat looks a bit sharper and has good bone structure now.
I got a bit carried away when pressing and I think tugged it out of shape somewhat at the hem, but that will fix and I must admit I am just wearing it in the meantime on account of being in love with it.
I love my snuggly pumpkin coat. Thank you Nikki and Rachel! xxxx