This is probably the hardest and coolest thing I have sewn to date – a moto jacket, in wool melton (from Fabric.com), using the Style Arc Ziggi pattern.
I’ve been hearing good things about this indie pattern company for a while, and when Stacy Sews and Sew Maris announced their jacket sew-along, I knew it was time to take the plunge.
The jacket was going to be difficult construction-wise, so I decided to not stress over tweaking the fit. There were a number of sew-alongers messing with raising the armhole and the like. Eek! I am so not there yet. Knowing myself, I would have ever gotten past the muslin if I went in search of fit perfection. I bought a size 18 (based on my bust), lengthened the sleeves and inch and let out the hips 2 inches in the side seams. Those two tweaks alone set this jacket miles above anything I could find in the store.
When stretching your skill set, make sure you have a clear goal in mind. Are you learning construction? New fabrics? Fit? Keep that goal in focus and let the other things go. We can’t be experts in everything overnight.
The wool was lovely to sew, very forgiving, substantial. Perhaps, it was just a tad too thin for this project, but good enough. For the lining, I used a gorgeous anti-static from Jo Ann’s.
As far as the pattern goes, the pattern itself is lovely, but the directions might as well have been in Latin. Stacy and Maris’ posts are awesome though and following those will keep you on the straight and narrow. The zipper lengths for the sleeves and pockets indicated in the materials were longer than the lengths marked on the pattern. It wasn’t a big deal to work around it though. The only part that I got really tripped up was that my lower back lining was 3/4″ shorter than it needed. I checked and rechecked my pieces, so I am sure it is a pattern problem and not a construction/cutting error. Style Arc patterns are one-size, so maybe it is just for the size 18? I’ll write them and ask.
Here are some of the super helpful construction tutorials that got me through this project
- A List of All Sew-along Posts
- Collar Construction (awesome tips on “turn of cloth”)
- Near-seam Exposed Zipper Pockets
- Exposed Zipper Sleeve Opening (I left off the gusset.)
- How To “Bag” A Jacket Lining
Stylistically, there are lots of things to love about this pattern. The inverted triangle shape of the front panel with the asymmetrical zip looks way better than most jacket openings over my mom-pooch. The mini-peplum butt-flare thing curves around my back and butt in the just the right places. Again, it is super flattering in a hard-to-flatter area. And the zippers, oh, the zippers! They were a pain in the boo-tay to install but I la-la-la-love them. I have mine custom cut at Zipperstop and they are of amazing quality. I’m glad I splurged there.
I would have never had the courage to begin, or the knowledge to finish this jacket, if it hadn’t been for the encouraging hand-holding of the Ziggi Sew-along leaders Stacy Sews and Sew Maris. Thank you, ladies! You are wonderful teachers. It was an honor to learn under you.