Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Amy Butler's Rainy Days Coat



So, last fall when I saw the Love Collection by Amy Butler, I was in Love! I had to have those prints! Then I saw the pattern and fell in deeper Love! Making this coat has really had it's ups and downs, but I really love the end result. I hope you like it too!

First a note about the fabric: The laminated fabric is really a lot drapey-er than it looks and has a nice hand. The down side to this fabric is that it cannot be folded. If you are going to buy it locally, insist that it is rolled. If you are going to buy online, call or email. Insist that it be rolled. I bought it at the Sewing Expo and didn't know it couldn't be folded, so I let them fold it and bag it for me, and there it sat...




... until I decided to read through the pattern and found out that Amy has a file that can be downloaded from her site with more information about sewing and caring for the laminated fabric.

She says, "Do Not Fold Fabric" and then proceeds to give a few ways to get wrinkles out of the fabric should it get folded. None of them work, by the way. The wrinkles are permanent. When I contacted the Amy Butler Company about the fabric, asking if there was anything else I could do, they promptly replied that I should contact the retailer I purchased the fabric from and ask for a refund or exchange. They were also interested to know if the retailer would work with me.

Unfortunately for me, I had already lost the receipt and had no idea who I purchased it from. Good news though, the fabric naturally wrinkles a little bit during the sewing process and all of the wrinkles just kind of blend in and give the coat character.

And if anyone is close enough to see all of the wrinkles, they are close enough to see all of the sewing errors and are therefore entirely too close and should be told to back off. They have not been given permission to stand that close to your greatness.

Anyway, I found the instructions on the pattern to be well written and easy to follow. The entire construction of the coat is actually fairly simple. The only problem that I had was that the clips recommended to use instead of pins while sewing on the laminated fabric were sometimes not strong enough to deal with the weight of everything and I used pins in the seam allowances only.

I recommend making a muslin of the coat because I was pleasantly surprised that I did not have to make my usual full bust alteration. I just had to lengthen the bodice, front and back to bring it to my waist line and then I shortened the length below the waist and the sleeves.

The only changes I made was that I moved the shoulder notch on the sleeve cap more towards the back to ease some of the fullness out of the front and put it where I need it and then I added belt carriers.



I also was able to squeeze the pattern pieces together on the fabric enough that I have enough left over for a matching tote! Overall, I love this pattern and am planning on making another coat out of a lightweight wool.

Here are some photos of the finished project-








Pocket detail-



Beautiful covered buttons-

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