The Lady Grey

Have you ever worked on a sewing project for so long that you never brought yourself to wear it? Such is the case with my swingy, peachy silk Lady Grey.

I joined Gertie’s sew-along last fall, but my work on it dragged and dragged. Let’s see, the sew-along ended in November? And mine was done in January. And then it sat hanging on my door until our kittens (three, to be exact) took an interest in the sash.

I made a gajillion alterations to the pattern, then veered off course from the hand-tailoring to try something different. The fabric is a silk tweed from Gorgeous Fabrics. Because of the fabric’s thinness, it wasn’t suited for full-on hand tailoring with canvas interfacing and padstitching and all that. I’m not sure I’d ever personally need to use these kind of heavy inner details since I live in such a warm climate.

Instead, the coat was entirely machine-sewed and interfaced with fusibles. Somehow on the interwebs I discovered Judy Barlup’s site and her DVD Japanese Tailoring.The video is a bit older and its blazer sample somewhere from the 80s, but she is a very good teacher and the video impeccably paced and clear. You won’t get confused.

In her method, one basically spends some time altering the pattern and drafting facings and collars so it can be sewn much easier, much like Sherry is doing in the RTW sew-along.

It’s difficult to review the Lady Grey pattern because I changed it so much, first altering the front a great deal to accommodate a small bust while keeping the wide lapel. I also added an undercollar piece (which the pattern doesn’t include) and redrafted the front facing (which the DVD shows how to do) so that the seams rolled properly to the inside.

The sleeves had a gargantuan (to me) amount of sleeve ease. I’m just no good at sleeves so I did a lot of hacking to get them the way I wanted. But I absolutely love how it all turned out and really need to find a reason to wear it. Before it goes completely to boiling Texas weather.

Speaking of boiling, D likes taking oversaturated and high contrast photos in the dead of the Texas afternoon. From his photo shoot:

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