My winter wool coat project is slowly progressing despite my detours into other little projects. Yesterday, we had our first snow in Helsinki, so I got extra motivation to sew on.
This time I cut the fabric and add some very important interfacings to support the coat fronts.
Cutting the wool
My wool is wool-angora blend with a clear nap. It was really important to pay attention while cutting the fabric. The nap should always point down. This complicated the cutting process since the shape of the pattern pieces already prevented me from cutting the pieces out of a folded fabric. To conserve the nap direction I cut the fabric in two so that I could place the two pieces with the nap pointing to the same direction.
I left out the collar and the sleeve pieces and only made sure that I had plenty of fabric for them for later. I am not sure about the right size of the collar and I want to see the assembled coat before making any irreversible decisions.
I serged the main edges of the coat pieces immediately. This will stop them from fraying and make a neat finished edges:
I used tropical weight hair canvas for the sew-in interfacing. I cut the interfacing on bias:
The hem was very wide, so I did not interface the whole hem but only the closest 20 cm or so. My pattern piece had the seam allowance included, so I drew the pattern on the hair canvas and then removed the seam allowance before cutting the pieces for the interfacing.
After cutting the interfacing I realized that I had not soaked the hair canvas! What would happen if it shrunk in the wash? I then soaked the pieces I had cut and luckily the worst thing that happened was some little fraying of the edges – no shrinking!
Sewing on the interfacing
Following some tips from my sewing guru Michele, I basted the hair canvas on my wool with long basting stitches.
Then I switched into using Gütermann hand silk thread. This is pre-waxed silk thread I got from the Lining company. It comes in a big skein and it took me 2,5 hours to wind it into a neat ball. It was worth all the trouble, though, since this thread is amazing to work with. The hand silk doesn’t tangle or twist at all and it glides smoothly through the fabric. I cannot recommend this thread strongly enough!
The interfacing is sewn on using catch stitch. You’ll only pick a little bit of the wool and the stitches don’t show from the right side:
Oops… I got a message from my sewing guru telling me that it’s not customary to sew the outer edge of the interfacing onto the wool since it may end up pulling. Well, at least it will be easy to rip the stitches if that happens…
Taping the coat edges
After the interfacing was on, there was more hand sewing to do. I used ermazine tape to tape the front edges. As it is cut on bias I didn’t cut it at the point where the front edges have the angle.
I sewed the tape on with more catch stitching:
After all this hand stitching I can finally take this coat to my machine and start to sew the main pieces together! There’s, of course, going to be more interfacing but those steps come at the later stage.
I hope you found this post useful and informative. Subscribe to follow my progress! Soon I can make the first fitting! How exciting!