So, I’ve finally finished the parka I’ve been talking about for the last month.
I made it from black cotton twill and the lining is red and white polka dot cotton. It features a two way zipper, zipper shield, hood, fish tail hem, welt pockets, paper back pockets with flaps as well as lots and lots of top stitching. It’s definitely the most difficult and complicated garment I have ever made and I think I did a fairly good job. At least I am very happy with the result and I know I will wear it a lot.
I made some alterations. I shortened the body by 7 cm in total, 2 above the waist and 5 below and because of this I used a zipper that was 65 cm instead of 70 cm. I shortened the sleeves by 5 cm, which may have been a little bit to much, but it works OK. I did not make a muslin because this is a loose fitting jacket and I found it unnecessary, but maybe I should have to get the sleeve length right. The pattern was not always very clear and the photographs in the magazine, the technical drawing and the written instructions did not always match which meant I had to improvise a little sometimes. But I guess that when you sew a pattern that is graded as advanced you should be able to figure out what to do when the instructions are not clear. And one thing that I found very bad. The pockets are worked first. They are sewn on the front pieces before they are interlined with the lining, which means that the fabric stretches out. When I cut out the lining and started basting to the shell, the shell was bigger, which gave me some difficulty when lining up the zipper and hemming. So my advice (and reminder if I make this again) is to stay stitch the front pieces before working the pockets.
Sure, it has some flaws. The sleeves are not totally pucker free, the pockets are not perfectly identical on both sides and the top stitching is not completely straight but I love those little imperfections. They are there because I made this jacket and I am very proud of it. For years, I have been looking for a black autumn/spring jacket but never found the right one. Now I have one that I love and I will probably wear it until it falls apart. Mission accomplished!