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Pattern Review: Denim Jacket S8845 by Simplicity

Oh dear, it's been so long since I have written a pattern review, yet alone a blog post. The wedding preparations took up most of my time. While I didn't make my own wedding dress which I am still so pleased about, I did make my own jacket. I wanted to add a casual touch to my white dress and loved the look of a denim jacket that I had seen online with many brides. I also wanted to make something that I know I would be wearing again. And apologies that this looks like sharing my wedding photos with us but I didn't take many pictures during the making - totally forgot! I did take videos through the various fitting stages.

The jacket is a unisex pattern and available in sizes XS to XL. The fit is very relaxed, loose and a bit boxy. I meant to use the leftover Liberty denim but it had a huge sun-bleached stain that I couldn't cut around. I will make another jacket using this denim but for the wedding I wanted to have the 'perfect' fabric if you know what I mean.

I am not sure if the pattern is available as PDF, I bought the paper pattern when it first was released. It comes in sizes XS to XL (bust: 30-32" till 46-48"). The jacket is definitely on the larger and longer side hence the following/below adjustments I made due to my height and proportions as well as the look I wanted for my jacket in combination with my wedding dress.

I made size M and started with tissue fitting the pattern to me. I simply pinned the pattern pieces (all front and back bodice pieces and sleeve) together at the seam allowance and 'tried' the jacket on. I just wanted to see the length of the jacket and see where my waist is in comparison to the pattern.

With that mind I shortened the pattern by 2" and moved on to making a toile using cotton fabric. I also shortened the sleeves by 2".

For this pattern, or any pattern with many pieces joining, make sure you adjust the pattern in the same place for all pattern. You also might have to true your seams.

For the toile, I sewed all jacket pieces including the sleeves but excluding the pocket pieces and waistband.

Now I wanted to find out how the back fits me and if I need to do a broad back adjustment and any other fit adjustments.

I struggled moving my arms forward and slashed the fabric in two places on the back and ask someone to measure the opening. I needed about 1.5cm (5/8") for on each side. With panels the adjustment is a lot easier than normal.

Further to that, I decided to remove another 1" from the length and played with the idea to move the armhole-sleeve seam by 2cm (3/4"). I ended up not doing this adjustment since I raised armhole in the armpit.

I raise the armhole, I think it was about 1.5cm (5/8") for better arm mobility.

When you make a toile, make sure you only baste your pieces together, so you can quickly unpick your stitches and adjust if necessary. Which came in handy when fitting the sleeve to the armhole. I increased the seam allowance of the jacket pieces in the armpit only but kept the sleeve seam allowance as is.

Moving on from my toile, I cut my denim. For the pocket, my friend gave me a vintage pillow case to have 'my something old'.

The construction of the jacket isn't too difficult. I reckon an advanced beginner could manage easily. Although, I didn't do the welt pocket due to time and because I shortened the jacket so much, I wasn't sure how it looked and if I even had space left. Make sure you keep track of all your pieces, because there are so many! I tend to leave one pin in the pattern and fabric, so I know which pattern piece is which.

The sew-along with Norris is pretty good and helped me through constructing the pocket and pocket flap. I wished they would use contrasting thread in the video as well as a fabric with a clear right and wrong side, just to make it easier to see what is going on.

I opted for a stitch length of 3.5 and had my tension at 6 for the top-stitching. I sewed faux flat-felled seams - again due to time - but would likely do it again because I am a bit lazy at times.

I would like to make another one (or two), definitely using the leftover Liberty denim and maybe a darker denim jacket. For these, I would likely to lengthen the jacket again by an 1". I only shortened it twice so I would look better with my wedding dress. I also like to look at the back once more and while I need the width further up on my back, I would prefer a more fitted look towards the hem.

Thanks for hanging out with me. Have you made any denim jacket yet?

Happy Sewing!


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