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Sewing is therapy for me. I hoard fabric, patterns, notions, and spend more time shopping for fabric than I care to admit...

Monday, December 7, 2015

unselfish sewing week

I love sewing for myself but there is something special when you make a garment for someone else. Even though I work for precision and a beautifully executed finished product, I seem to work harder when I am making something for someone other than me.  So I have to say I am super proud of the finished result.

I made this Albion coat from Colette Patterns for my baby, Daniel, who happens to have just turned 25, is a third year medical student and how has been married for two years.  Doesn't sound like much of a baby, huh?  Well, he will always be mine!  Daniel simply is not a big guy and due to some health issues, he can't eat much so he most likely will never be much bigger than he is now.  I think he always looks cold so momma came to the rescue with a wool duffle coat in a cozy brown wool.  

From Colette Patterns site, this is how the Albion is described:
"Invest some time in Albion to create a classic duffle style coat (version 1) or jacket (version 2). Each version features toggle closures, tailored two-piece sleeves, yoke details, and a stylish three-piece hood.
Version 1 is a mid-thigh length coat with patch pockets, in-seam pockets, a detachable hood tab, and flannel lining. Version 2 is a hip-length unlined jacket with a combination of felled and bound seams, in-seam pockets, and interior pockets.
Albion is a versatile, simple shape that transitions easily from menswear to women’s wear."

I made version 1 in a small.  I will also add that it fit me perfectly though the shoulders and bust, so one of these may be in my future as well!  

I wish I would have added a flannel as the lining but I didn't think about it until I was completely finished.  Maybe next time!

I made a muslin since I don't use many Collette patterns and wanted to make sure it fit great before cutting into the wool.  The fit was spot on, with zero alterations. I LOVE it when that happens!

I had barely enough wool to create this so I used some clever layout to get all the pieces on and had about a 12"X 12" chunk left over--whew!

The directions are logical and well thought out and I followed them while making this coat and lining.

I did decide to 'enhance' the coat with a few what I call upgrades.  Here are those!
1.  Interface the tabs and the pocket flaps
2.  Stitched the neckline with a 5/8" seam rather than the 3/8" called for in the directions.  I thought it was a bit strange that the directions have you staystitch at 5/8" but the finished seam is 3/8",  I didn't want to rip out the staystitching, so I just stitched a deeper seam allowance.
3.  I interfaced the hems with fusible interfacing so they had just a bit of body and would hold a nice crease.  The interfacing worked beautifully.

I also made my own toggles.  Had I purchased toggles at Hancock's, it would have cost me $30 and that was more than my fabric!  Did I fail to mention that both fabrics were on clearance and I picked them up last year at the end of the season?  The coating was $6 a yard and the lining $1 a yard.  Both were very nice quality as well!  To make the toggles, I purchased suede elbow patches and cut them into my desired shapes.  I found brown leather strips (for lack of a better word) and wooden buttons.  Making the toggles took about 15 minutes and I think they look just a good as the purchased ones but at the fraction of the cost.

Daniel loves his coat.  He looks great in it and I hope it will keep him nice and warm this winter!
Thanks for reading!


  1. Looks great!! He will surely enjoy this coat for a long time. I made this pattern back in January for my husband and I had a great time sewing it.

  2. What a wonderful coat for a wonderful son. I am sure he treasures this coat which was made with love.

    1. Such a nice comment Tomasa! Thank you!

  3. Amazing coat for a wonderful son. He will love this for years to come. Great job mom.

    1. Thanks Lori! I appreciate you taking time to comment!

  4. Your son's coat looks so smart and warm. And I am very impressed with your me-made toggles!

  5. You have done a lovely job of sewing this coat for your son and he looks very pleased with it. I hope you get lots of pleasure seeing him wear it. Well done!

  6. Replies
    1. Thanks Nakisha! This is a great pattern!

  7. Super smart to buy elbow patches and cut them up. I wouldn't have thought of that.

    1. Once in a while I have a very good idea! :)