And I've just finished a new one.
This coat, which I made back in the autumn of 2010, has served as his every-day wintercoat for all that time. And by the end of last winter, it was decidedly worse for wear. I have changed the lining at least once, maybe twice. And I've made some repairs to those nice but not always practical button tabs. But now, the fabric itself had started to pill in some places and shine in others. And the lining needed replacing again.
To put it quite simply: It was time for a new coat.
The were two fabrics in my stash which I though would qualify for this project: This one and a densely woven beige coating. Either would make a nice change from the plain black we have used for his coats so far.
E picked this one. It is a peculiar kind of fabric: It's a thick, off-white wool knit with the checks printed on. The printing is not equally dark over the whole fabric. There is only a tiny bit of stretch and only really in the width of the fabric, so I thought it might serve fine for a coat.
I decided to use the selvedge of the fabric, with the white side facing out, as a piping.
For the pattern, I kept all the functional details which had made the previous coat such a winner: A fairly roomy fit which allows for a range of movement yet is fitted enough to eh... show off his good looks ;), the length which is practical both when driving and cycling, the collar which folds down a bit lower than the standard because that is more comfortable for him, the simple zipper closure.
The design details are new and I adapted them a bit to the nature of this fabric. The slanted welt pockets from the old coat didn't seem like such a good idea now. This fabric, although hardly stretchy, doesn't have the stability of that dense wool coating. And fusible interfacings (used to stabilize the yoke and the zipper edge) didn't really like sticking to it.
And of course, I wanted to use those selvedges as a design detail. So, where the old coat had raglan sleeves, I went with normal ones this time but made a sort-of cuff to add the piping. I made a shoulder yoke with a point at the back. The collar is edged in the selvedges and so are the openings of the kangaroo pockets.
I tried to match the checks. I even cut out everything in a single layer to do so and it was not easy. It's a knit and the check is printed on... The lines were going everywhere! I think I mostly managed it though.
The zipper is a thick black plastic one. I usually prefer metal zippers but in this case, I didn't want to add another colour in the mix.
I quite like the way the coat looks on him (even though he didn't really feel like posing when we took these pictures, too many people we passing by... But that's what we get for deciding to take pictures near the climbing hall again) and he got compliments on it from to colleagues. Both other men, who know his girlfriend sews (also for him) and think that's really cool. :D