Saturday, August 25, 2012

Jean Jacket and Double Duty Dress

Well hello! It's been a while since I've posted anything. I've been sewing up a fury though. Unfortunately, I've been in a rut in the photo department. I've been stuck on this dress/skirt. I don't think it photographs very well. I think it looks great in real life but the camera isn't doing it any justice. Maybe I'm being overly critical. We just did the third photo shoot for the same outfit so I'm gonna say "the third time is the charm" and post what I've got. Have you guys every had that problem when something you really like just isn't looking good in the pics?
Anyway, let's start with my latest pride and joy- the jean jacket. Both pieces are inspired by my Spring/Summer 2012 wardrobe. I've been searching for the perfect jean jacket pattern. The ultimate pattern that I have found is Style Arc's Stacie Jean Jacket. It has all the jean jacket details that I would want. I just can't bring myself to spend over $30 in shipping from Australia yet! So plan B was McCalls 5860. It's out of print but I took a chance and ran to JoAnn's to see if they still had it and sure enough they did! I like the princess seam shaping of this jacket. It has the classic jean jacket style. The only thing it's missing,which wouldn't be too difficult to add, is a bottom band instead of a shirt style hem. I would think you could just chop off the shirt bottom and add a band instead of a hem. However, this time I went with the shirt look because it more closely resembles my inspiration.
I used a wonderful stretch denim from Gorgeous Fabrics. At $14 a yard, I splurged a little. However, I think I will get bang for my buck- I can style this jacket with many different looks and into the Fall/Winter seasons as well. I got the jean buttons from Dimebuttons on Ebay. They have a huge selection of jean style buttons and rivets with all sorts of designs. I spent $28 on fabric and $6 on buttons. I used Coats & Clark heavy thread for the topstitching. I used a beige color that really looks great on the dark denim and gives it more of a RTW look.
I spent about 8 hours sewing this up. The instructions are great and I didn't run into any construction issues. There are fitting instructions included. I ended up taking in the center back by about 1/2 inch to give it more of a fitted look. I also took about an inch off the length.

Here are some detail shots (shot in crummy lighting so they don't look the best). I also brightened the photos so you could see the detail. Then denim is darker in real life:

Can you see the design on the buttons?

 Look ma! I matched up the top stitching from the princess seam to the top stitching on the sleeve!

I paired the jacket with this long prairie skirt that doubles as a strapless dress, also inspired by my Spring/Summer project. I used Simplicity 2609.

I made view A, the longest length. I added two inches to the top waistband section because I didn't want the next seam to cut my boobs in half when I pulled it up as a dress. The extra length was perfect.
I used a rayon challis from It is a black background with a white floral print, just like my inspiration photo. The fabric cost my about $35 for 5 yards. However, I have about a yard left over to squeeze out a top maybe.
The skirt is super easy to make. It just seems like it takes forever because you have to sew each tier together and gather it. I spent about 5-6 hours on this.
It is super comfy to wear as a skirt but looks great hiked up as a dress and cinched in at the waist.

More to come soon! I can't believe it but I've almost sewed up the whole Spring/Summer 2012 collection! I just need two more jackets and a couple pair of pants and then I'm done! I've been getting a lot more wear out of all these pieces than usual. I'm starting to dream up my Fall/Winter 2012 collection...