Pattern Review: Favorite Things Uptown Coat
by Sally Hess.
This jacket gets so much attention, I’m ready to sew another one! When I made this, I used some old wool and lining that was in my stash so I didn’t have to worry about the jacket not turning out. I figured that I would need to alter the pattern at least a little bit, and boy was I wrong! The pattern went together beautifully and it fits like a dream!
I made two minor changes to the pattern. The first was to make the inside of the collar out of the lining fabric. I worried that the wool would be too scratchy on my neck, so I used the lining and am really happy with that decision. To use a bit of complimentary flannel or other cozy fabric would also be nice! I didn’t use the optional interlining, except in the collar. I wanted to be sure the collar would stand up straight.
The other change I made was to add an inside pocket. The lining has the same pattern pieces as the outside of the jacket, so the seam at the empire waist practically begged for a small pocket to be added. I’m not sure if I’ll ever have reason to tuck my passport in that pocket, but if I do, I’m ready! The side pockets are also nice, though they hang dangerously close to the hem. If you make the knee-length coat version, you won’t have this concern. Next time I might add some length to the bottom hem, so that it can have a deeper hem than the 1 inch hem that is allowed.
When the pattern calls for the lining to be sewn to the outer fabric, the directions say to sew up one side of the front, across the top (with the collar tucked between the two layers) and back down the other side of the front. I chose to do this in three steps. I first sewed the top seam, with the collar tucked between the layers. This gave me the control to be absolutely certain that the collar was centered. It also let me tuck in a small hanging loop (I love it when jackets have that!). and lastly, it allowed for some nice top stitching before sewing the two center front seams.
I hemmed the lining before sewing the lining to the jacket. This allowed me to turn the jacket hem up and over the lining.
After I sewed the lining to the jacket at the front seams, I trimmed the seam allowance at the corner, and turned the seam right side out. The jacket hem was now folded up just the right amount for me to blind stitch the hem. Once pressed and topstitched, the lining is firmly attached to the jacket at the center front hem. None of this is in the directions, but it is something you will commonly see on a button down shirt or anything with a facing at the center front.
I think that Favorite Things has made another fantastic pattern. My experience with this pattern company has been very consistent. They have good lines that fit a broad range of body types and their patterns go together very well.
However, as with some of their other patterns, the directions are a little sparse and could be frustrating for beginners. When I tried to mark the buttonhole placement, I found the pattern piece was printed backwards, so the pattern had to be face-down on the fabric. There also aren’t very many of the small hints and tips that you sometimes see on other patterns.
This jacket would look great in any weight of wool, wide wale or fine wale corduroy or that lovely velveteen that I’ve been eying at the store. And the button choices?! I chose covered buttons in part because I was a bit overwhelmed by the great button choices available! I do recommend making a corded buttonhole for strength and durability, because this jacket will get a lot of wear!