Way back in February, I decided I’d make the Grace Trans-Seasonal Coat from Style Arc as part of my Great Module Sew Along. I had 3m of dark dark navy blue twill bought from Fabworks, and I already had the pattern after buying it on a sale, the paper version! I traced and toiled the size 14 and decided I didn’t like it, but the girls persuaded me it looked better than I thought, but maybe it was just too roomy. It is a little oversized, with dropped shoulders and no structure, also unlined. I traced the size down, shortened the body length by 3cm and decided to just go for it!
I managed to make about a quarter of it when I had to abandon it early in March and travel to South Africa. So it was still waiting for me when I got back in June, but I had no inclination to carry on with it immediately, it was summer afterall!! Some summer, I still think that was the wettest, chilliest, windiest summer I’ve had here since the first one in ’97. However, finish it, I did! It’s not quite like the pattern, I’ve made some modifications.
First off, may I just say that Style Arc instructions, drawings and limited online photographs are all different, so you cannot trust any one of those to be right, because they contradict each other. The instructions that come with the pattern are limited at best, so don’t go there if you’re a beginner who needs hand holding, because it’s not going to happen. The Grace Coat is supposed to have bound edges, something I didn’t fancy, so I added seam allowance and made it up in the “normal” way.
The pocket… Drawings show it as decorative, the instructions and pattern pieces provided imply it’s to cover the opening. Online pictures didn’t help, neither did emailing Stye Arc, so I made it to cover the pocket opening. (They have now changed their line drawings so it’s clear the flap is decorative) The line drawings show it as decorative, which is pointless as far as I’m concerned. The pocket didn’t get a welt in the end either. The welt pattern piece is too big for the opening, and unnecessary if you have the flap in that position! You either need the flap, or the welt, unless the flap is to cover the openng, then the welt goes on the other side. But it’s still too big! Anyway, by the time I’d got there, I was just a little fed up! So I left it out and just topstitched. You cannot see it anyway, with the flap covering.
You have extra wide seam allowances of 2cm on this coat, which you’re supposed to topstitch from the outside, after turning under the raw edge. It does look good on the outside, but what a pain to do all that pressing, and measuring, on the inside! I managed to steam my fingers a lot doing this. Maybe next time I’ll do a Hong Kong finish inside, and topstitch outside, might look good with a contrast fabric or something with a pattern.
I like my finished coat, don’t get me wrong, but will I make another? I’d have to think about that. In the meantime, it has come in handy this Autumn, the high turn-up collar keeps the wind out! Apologies for the creases in the photos, this coat is the one I’m reaching for most at the moment with the windy weather, it’s easy to throw on and the pockets are a good size for mask, keys, wallet, etc.
Perhaps I’ll make one in a waterproof fabric..