Sunday, April 17, 2016

Blazer of 2016, The Struggle to Launch


I've assembled everything I need for this project, tailoring mojo has decided to go on vacation somewhere. So while I wait for it to come back, I'll share where things currently stand.


First up.... Things to make tailoring a jacket easier.


Never underestimate the power of thread! If you don't already own a spool of #40 cotton basting thread, go out and get one now. It's amazing how something so simple can make such a huge difference in your sewing. It's virtually tangle free, so it makes basting a breeze rather than an exercise in frustration. Soon, you'll be basting everything.

Another tangle free wonder is silk thread. There's a considerable amount of hand sewing in a tailored jacket so if one can make it easier, why not? Do the mere words "pad stitching" strike fear into your heart? Fear not. Silk thread will make it a walk in the park.

These spools are sitting on some black pocketing that I picked up at Steinlauf and Stoller during the MPB Winter Frolic. It has a woven in stripe. Classy and silly inexpensive, $7/ yd. The gold silk thread won't see all that much use. I'll use it for pickstitching the lining.



Other supplies that make life easier are premade sleeve heads (on the left), and premade hair canvas jacket fronts (right). The jacket fronts are sold by the chest size, and are very reasonable. I think about $12 / pair. Sure, you can make your own, and they may be superior, but you will pay much more just for the materials. In the end, I'm just not that much of a tailoring purist.


Materials in hand, I turn to the pattern.....



This pattern is from 1969. Purchased on Etsy. This pattern is unusual in the very small world of men's patterns, because it doesn't have darts running down the center of the jacket fronts. Instead, the darts extend from under the arm. This makes it the ideal pattern for a plaid jacket. The plaid is uninterrupted the entire length of the front. And for the truly ambitious, the pocket flaps can be matched as well!



Maybe someday I'll attempt a plaid jacket. That thought is driving me to "perfect" the fitting of this pattern to the best of my ability; knowing full well that perfection isn't really in my DNA. Unfortunately, it hasn't gotten off to a very good start. It's gonna take some serious mojo. More of the struggle next time.



  1. Interesting about the pre-made hair canvas jacket fronts, I haven't heard of those before.

    I know what you mean about not tailoring mojo, I've got my jacket started and up to the welt pockets, and it has stalled. Also might have something to do with the weather.

  2. I like where the dart is. I don't like how in the drawings all the lower lapels look like they are rolling out more than the top. It's as if they decided to leave out the horizontal drag lines that would go with that lapel break.
    A friend posted a photo of her uncles, all wearing singlebreasted jackets just buttoned at the waist, the lower opening flaring out (think Dior new look jacket) I have a feeling it was a street style choice in 1954 southside Boston. Same lapel roll.
    I don't know that I can fire up your sewing mojo, but you certainly contribute to mine!

  3. I have that #40 cotton basting thread - love it! I made a tailored jacket and a tailored coat many moons ago...I am pretty sure I did not use silk thread but next time I create a tailored jacket or coat, I will give silk thread a try for the padstitching.
    Oh I certainly understand lack of sewjo! Happens to all of us!

  4. Wondering where to purchase nearly all the tailoring supplies if you can't get to New York? Try, they carry alteration, tailoring, production sewing, and dry cleaning supplies. It's more fun to get their monthly catalog and order from that, the website tends to be unwieldily, but prices are good and shipping is extremely fast.

    1. Thanks for that excellent recommendation, John!

  5. Please do whatever you need to do to get started again. I miss reading your blog entries!

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