As soon as I saw Closet Case Files’ Clare Coat pattern, I knew I had to make it. I’ve been wearing my wool Ziggi Moto jacket for two years now. I have gotten so much joy out of it. However, my wardrobe still needed something that could dress up a little more and also be paired with the longer tops that I have been wearing recently. Let’s be honest though, I just really loved the style. It had to happen.
In usual form, I dragged my feet getting started with this project, and as the weather started warming up, I had resigned myself to waiting until next fall to get to wear it. I was almost right, I sewed on the last snap on Official First Day Of Spring. I was in luck though, because it snowed on the first day of spring. It looks like I will at least get a couple of days of wear before I put it away. hoozah!
This pattern is wonderfully drafted. It has raglan sleeves and a forgiving a-line shape. Most of the hard work is done in the cutting of the pieces and fusing of interfacings. I made one muslin out of craft felt to check my adjustments (using my new-found relaxed fitting standards I talked about in this post) and got cracking.
My one issue with this pattern was the button placements. I can’t get excited about offset button holes on this style of jacket, which I suspect is why so many people are going the hidden snap route. Also, I am not sure why the buttonholes are marked vertically when horizontal is typical for a coat. (Or so I have been told.) These complaints are barely worth the mention though. Button hole markings need to be adjusted so often anyways.
My version was inspired by Get, Set, Sew’s Clare Coat. I copied the statement buttons on the collar, and piping between the facing and the lining. These are my first ever bound buttonholes. (See Iconic Patterns’ wonderful tutorial for how to do bound buttonholes. #fangirl) They really are worth the effort for this heavy coating, butI am happy that I didn’t have to sew five more of them.
I’m going to deny the temptation to point out minor flaws that I am seeing looking at these pictures, and just say that I adore how this coat turned out. I think the fear of having some cranky sewing snob poo-poo your project because of the errors in it makes me want to point out the mistakes myself. So, whatever, Inner Cranky Sewing Lady, my coat is awesome.
If you want to sew your first ever coat, I really would recommend this one. Between the directions, sewalong, and drafting, you will really be please with the result.
Clare Coat Details
(Use craft felt to muslin your coat before sewing with your good wool! Tip from my coat-sewing-guru Brooke.)
- Fabric: Wool Blend Melton in Royal Blue from Fabric.com, Polyester Charmeuse and Anti-static Lining from Jo-Ann Fabrics
- Pattern: Closet Case Files’ Clare Coat
- Measurements: High Bust – 41 in; Bust – 43.5 in; Waist – 42; Hips – 52 in; Height – 5 ft 10 in
- Lengthened all body pieces 3 inches at lengthen/shorten line.
(Can I say how much I appreciate when a pattern notes the height it was drafted for? It meant I got the length adjustments right on the first shot. Wonderful!)
- Lengthened sleeves 2 inches (split above and below the elbow dart).
- Graded between the size 18 in the bust to size 20 in the waist.
This pattern has a lot of ease built in. I am technically not a 20 in my hips, and while the size 18 finished measurement was larger than my hips, I wanted to give just a smidge more ease of movement there. Size 20 worked out perfectly.
- Moved pocket back up 1 1/2 inches after lengthening pattern.
- Added a 1/2 inch (1 inch overall) to the front waist with a full tummy adjustment (like an FBA but lower).
Another wonderful pattern, Heather. Thank you for your help making sewing such a pleasure.