Oops. Once again, I didn’t mean to disappear! A busy schedule has meant that my photographer has been otherwise occupied on the weekends, not to mention that it seems my camera battery is not long for this world. A remote and a new battery are definitely on my to-do list! (These photos are a mix of DSLR and iPhone, so apologies in advance for the mismatched colour and quality!)
But enough excuses… This coat has been in progress for such a long time. I went out and got the Robson Coat pattern as soon as it was released, started it with the best of intentions and then promptly ran out of winter. It has sat in the UFO pile (along with a lot of other things) giving me the side eye ever since, until Brisbane finally decided it might try this winter thing out again a few weeks ago.
And yes, everyone who likes to tell me that winter in Brisbane is not really winter, I know. This sub-tropical weakling can’t cope when the mercury drops below 20C, but in my defence, yesterday morning was the coldest it has been in Brisbane for 103 years. There was almost frost and everything 😛
I went a bit rogue on this pattern really. Size-wise, I went with a 6 at the bust blending through to a 0 at the waist and hips, partly because I am not the pear-shaped person this pattern is designed for, and also because I wanted this to be reasonably fitted. I made it shorter, because I don’t really need a long coat, and after reading a few reviews I also moved up the pockets a little. I’d move them up even further next time I make it as they still feel a little low to me (and I am planning quite a few more of this pattern because… well, I like coats. A lot.) I swapped out the tie belt for a buckle belt as well, as I think they look smarter.
Another major change I made was to ignore the fabric recommendations: I went with a medium/heavy wool coating which is lovely and SUPER warm, but did mean I had to hand wheel the entire topstitched section along the collar because my machine was not having a bar of it. Despite its bulk, the coating was far too drapey for this pattern as well, which I didn’t realise until I had sewed the body together, so I had to retrofit in a whole lot of interfacing to get it to sit right (I forgot to do the storm flaps, which is why they are flopping all over the place in these photos). As you can imagine, this made the inside a red-hot mess so I decided that I would have to line it.
I am so happy with the look of the lining though – silk is always nice and luxurious and it is a nice pop of colour on the inside. After talking to other people who made this as well I’m quite happy that I didn’t have to sew in 50 thousand miles of binding! If I lined again I would add in some extra room in the lining for the sleeves, because (at least in this make) there is a lot of strain at the elbows and it is definitely damaging the fabric there.
One small problem I haven’t solved yet is finding some matching buttons for the shoulder tabs – I was one short (so frustrating!) and I really, really wanted to use these buttons (lion heads!). I’ve been hunting through etsy and ebay without luck so far, and given I got them off the sale table I don’t think I can get any more from where I bought them. The shoulder tabs are hidden under the collar so I’m not super worried about it but it would be nice to finish it properly. For the moment it can be our little secret.
One thing I do want to point out to anyone who wants to make this coat – buy LOTS of thread. More than you think. The combination of triple stitch and so much topstitching (and honestly, unpicking) meant I finished this with 6cm to spare (I think I had about 4 rolls, so 1000m). The backs of the buttonholes are done in black because I had nothing left (the buttonholes are a mess anyway, my machine was really over the layers and just massacred them). There is nothing quite as stressful as watching your thread run down and doing all those mental calculations as to whether you’re going to make it.
But it is a lovely coat, and the pattern is great. I’ve always been happy with the quality of Sewaholic patterns and the instructions and this is no exception. Tasia has a way of stepping you through quite involved makes so it all feels easy. The finished result looks smart and I have been wearing it a lot. I’ll certainly be making this again soon (in the Orla Kiely waterproof fabric I got the other day perhaps…)
Bonus photos: looks good with jeans too.
- Coat: Sewaholic Robson Coat, size 6/0/0
- Fabric: Outer is teal wool/cashmere Pelorus Coating (sold out) from Tessuti Fabrics (appx 2m)
- Lining: Silk twill from The Fabric Store (appx 2m)
- Interfacing from Fabric Warehouse Sydney on ebay
- Buttons from the $2 sale table at Sckafs
- Buckle from M Recht
- Eyelets and bias binding from Spotlight
* Granny Weatherwax is my guide in all things, and I thought it was fitting to have a Pratchett reference as a footnote.