green car coat to ‘racing green’ coat with a hood

……… …………this is the jacket that started it all and now that I have finally started working on it one year later, I am wondering how I picked up such an odd one!  It was 2euro, the colour of my old school uniform and it’s like wearing 1983 – you may not be able to see it clearly, but there is a tab space for missing epaulets, and some strange panel at the back, the buttons are a pewter shade, the wool quality is gorgeous..

After the issues with the last coat, I thought that perhaps I should make a pattern for what I had rather than making a pattern fit to the coat and it seemed like a good plan, especially as in the taking apart, I had ripped part of the front…. (one way to establish grain – not), so I darned it and thought I could hide it in a neck dart …..maybe…..(and it turned out maybe not).  The coat length is what my aunt calls a  ‘car coat’.  which I think refers to above the knee length – but longer than a blazer.  

I drafted a overgarment block, and then made a raglan block, and made a toile that was far too fitted, so I drafted another bodice block, and sleeve,  and gave it extra ease, and there wasn’t enough fabric in the panels using this one.  So then I went a made a deep raglan from the fitted block by the time it came to making the toile, I didn’t know if I wanted it to fit or not as (a) the pattern drafting was getting cruder each time and (b) every-time I smooth the fabric to put pattern pieces on the green wool – it was like a precursor to laying out snooker balls (and of course once you get an idea like that in your head, its hard to remove it)

The deep raglan toile had too much room at sleeve front and back so pattern re done, toile/lining recut, and coat cut. The lining/toile fabric is a sheet.  The coat made up quick enough considering I was a few days messing with drafting.  The pattern is a bit basic and I will use it again, but I will refine a few markers, especially the centre front ones as they are incorrect for sure…..  

The pockets are set in seam, the original coat has welted pockets in the same location, and I figured easier in the re-cut to put in seam.   I tried some top stitch across the pocket seams but it looked a bit odd so I took it out.

I had also thought of adding two toggles or decorative clasps but when it was sewn, I went off the idea, however, there was a buttonhole from the old jacket that ended up in the mix.  I knew it was there and left it there so to get maximum cut – and thinking it may end up in a seam finish (it didnt) as I kept as big an overlap as I could, so I left it.  I have secured and darned it the hole and will figure something in time to conceal it better.    I left the sleeves ‘bracelet’ length.  It was the longest I could get them with small cuff and 2cm hem (the only other spare fabric pieces left were the strange back panels which I needed and collar – wrong grain direction for cuff).  

The back panels were then used to make a hood, which I thought would be even better if it was detachable, and thought it may look better also lined in some nice leftover lining from last summers green coat. 

I have never drafted (or made) a hood before.  I have pattern instruction from fashion college (I never use those notes as they are in inches, although I do like my notes as I drafted all my pattern notes to scale!), and I used that with Helen Armstrong Jones (rarely draft from this – inches again), and did a mix of both.  I am really pleased with the hood, apart from it being immensely practical, it also sits well on jacket and due to fabric restrictions I did a small curve to the front hood which really holds it in place on my head, the hood facing was made from a collar which had a bias to it and not the correct grain, but it was the only piece of fabric left so it was used (well technically 3 pieces left, 2 pocket flaps and that strange button piece at neck in first photo!)

I will decide on what do about the ex buttonhole at the top later, I may just put a button on it to cover it – currently the scarf covers it fine and the hood conceals it well.    The photos are blurry towards the end, as I dropped the camera – twice. 

I was so very pleased with the jacket and wore it straight away and since, and the hood works very well indeed – tested soon after wearing thanks to the predictable Irish rain, the jacket/coat is a light weight and perfect for this time of year, and well into summer. This is now looking like the basis for the red coat remake.  I have also ceased to think of the colour as relating to my school uniform or snooker tables but prefer to compare to jaguar racing green! – 

4 thoughts on “green car coat to ‘racing green’ coat with a hood

  1. Eimear Greaney says:

    Thanks Agy – It was not too complicated – the pattern drafting was a labour but by comparison to the last coat it was easier as I was better prepared having the pattern drafted. ultimately this is a 'wearable muslin (or toile)' as I will be using this for a red coat remake. The pattern is very simple and I am hoping to get some more focus on making a set of simple patterns that lend themselves to remaking clothes. I find total remakes easier than alterations! looking forward to more photos from your last workshop ………….


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