Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Make Mine Sheer!


Personally, I don't care for traditional suit jackets, but I can go for other types of creative layering! The concept behind #1106 began a year ago with the idea of a sheer "jacket" that can double as a shirt. Once it was near the end of the production process, I brought the package cover to exercise class to get the opinion of my friends. The first thing they said is "I don't work with THAT kind of fabric!" Ouch.

Just because you can see through it, don't automatically think the fabric need be "difficult to work with". The two most common sheer fabrics are Organza and Chiffon. Sheers get a bad reputation from Chiffons, which are slinky, slippery, with a soft hand and drape. Organza is the polar opposite, being firmer, easy to cut, and full of good body. In fact, organza is often used in finer apparel as an interfacing, and if used alone, as with the Phantom Jacket, needs no additional stiffening at all for a good shape in your collars and cuffs.

Being woven, both types of fabric will fray, yet they both can take very different types of seam finishes. The most common seam associated with sheers is called a "french seam" in which the seam is sewn in such a way that the cut edge is actually enclosed. There are so very many tutorials on french seams that I won't go into it here, except to say that the best, most professional french seams will be very narrow, less than 1/4" wide. On first glance, the seam will nearly be undetectable. With Chiffon, french seams are nearly the only option. However, with organza a french seam is a nice choice, but not the only one. Other seam finishes - from a simple serged edge, to a hong kong finish - could also be considered.

On the Phantom Jacket, the only seams needing a seam finish will be the back, side, and sleeve seam. Everything else is trimmed and enclosed in a facing. Myself, I used a serger on these seams, cutting them to a narrow 1/4". Now how easy is that? I hope my friends in excercise class might reconsider their opinion on sheers. Not all of them are "difficult"!

The Phantom Jacket and Pant pattern is available this week on Etsy on a "pre-order" status, to be mailed out on Monday, May 16th. Also, I'm offering a 15% discount on all Etsy orders now through May 16. Use the coupon code MOMSR4EVER at checkout:
http://www.etsy.com/listing/73756255/new-sewing-pattern-1950s-retro-jacket

2 comments:

Steph said...

ooooh. I have a few 50's mat. patterns which I bought because I liked the shape, too, but I have dithered about actually making it up. Thanks for the inspiration!

And you're right, sheers don't deserve their "bad" name.

Julie T. said...

This is really cute. I love the proportions and the fabrics you've used!