Jacket Weather and Seam finishes


I hate to admit it but the weather has officially turned to fall and we are full swing into jacket weather. Perhaps a new outer layer would help ease your transition? My closet is full of 3/4 and full-sleeved light sweaters but I'm lacking a good outerwear piece for the crisp climate. Bolt has a great variety of jacket and coat patterns--new ones from a beautiful Japanese pattern company for both adults and kids or Wendy Mullin's Built by Wendy: Coats and Jackets has great customizable options. Erica is teaching sessions of Indygo Junction's Midtown Trench down at MD for those who want and need the extra guidance. I went with SEWN's Upline Jacket because I liked the collar, the raglan sleeves, and the zipper front.

Sewn's Upline Jacket

I chose a bright color in a heavier cotton for the outer fabric and a beautiful bold Amy Butler print for the lining. I also chose one of our brass teeth separating zippers for the front and couldn't be happier with the substantial effect it gives.

Front view--Upline Jacket

Plus, there's topstitching and a back belt detail.

Collar detail--Upline Jacket

Back view--Upline Jacket

The pattern doesn't do a bag lining that would hide all the seams, but rather flat-lines the entire body and encourages you to finish the raw edge in your prefered manner. There a number of ways to do so. I decided on a Hong Kong (or bias bound) seam finish which I think gives such a professional look to the garment. It was quite time consuming but worth it, I think. And now I'm ready for fall!

inside--Upline Jacket

Bound edge detail

bound edge detail--sleeve

**Newsflash** Bolt just received a shipment of Anna Maria Horner bias tapes and they are YUMMY. What beautiful bindings, Hong Kong and otherwise, these would make!

new Anna Maria Horner bias tapes!

But since we're on the subject of seam finishes (and maybe you think I'm nutty to have finished all of those seams separately with bias tape), what are other ways to finish raw edges? For your perusal--the overlock stitch edge, the pinked edge, and the serged edge.

variety of seam finishes

The serged edge requires the use of a serger, but can trim and finish in one fell swoop. Don't own a serger? Most sewing machines come with an overlock stitch that looks like a mock serge, similar to stitch #8 in the picture below.

choosing an overlock stitch

You'll get the best results out of the overlock stitch if you sew it with an overlock foot on your machine. If your machine doesn't sew an overlock stitch, you can also finish your edge with a simple zig-zag stitch.

Overlook stitch on home sewing machine

I do love a good pinked edge sometimes. It's so vintage and classic. Instead of shears, I usually reach for my rotary cutter. I replaced the straight blade with a pinked one and now I can easily roll pinked edges. Don't forget the self-healing mat; you don't want to damage the blade or the table underneath.

pinking blade on rotary cutter