Quilted Jacket - Recently Finished

Add one more to the finished list! This jacket is really not hard to make and there is a lot less actual piecing than it looks like there would be.
Quilted Jacket


This pattern is called Whispering Creek Jacket, by Morning Glory Designs. I found it at my local quilt store.   You could also get it on line. The instructions call for 8 different fabrics and a batting that you use as a foundation for the jacket.  I used only six colors and as you can see, they are very vibrant.  I will select less contrasting fabrics next time. 

I purchased all of my fabrics and the batting, but it is possible you may have scraps from other projects.  This would be a good choice if you picked a base color to match strips you might have leftover from a jelly roll. Choices you make for the batting should probably be based on where you live and what time of year you want to wear the jacket.  You can use something as lightweight as muslin for the batting or as heavy as your favorite quilt batting.  I used a flannel because I wanted it to be warm, something I could wear inside during winter months.  If you are making something for spring or summer you could use muslin. If using muslin you will need to make the next smaller size because there is less bulk than the heavier batting.  

There are four main pattern pieces, front, back, sleeve, collar.  There are also front and back yokes, but you only use these pieces on the outer section.  The diamond pieces are made by sewing four 2.5" strips together then cutting them on a diagonal slant.  It takes two strips pieced together for the longer strips.  The lining and the batting are cut from the four main pattern pieces.  These sections are stacked together with the right side lining facing out.  With the lining at the bottom, the batting next, place the center strip right side up, place the next strip face down over the first strip and sew 1/4" seam through all layers on one side of the strips.  Fold the top strip over the seam, press, place the next strip right side down over the one you just pressed, sew along the edge again with 1/4" and continue until you have all of the surface covered.  Do this for the front, back and sleeves, working from the center.  This will quilt your jacket as you go.  I made my collar from the same fabric as the yoke.  I also added an extra bias strip to the bottom of the yoke.  

Once all of your pieces have been covered with the outer fabric, add your yoke to the front and back.  The next step is to sew the pieces together like you would for any jacket or blouse.  To finish this jacket trim the batting bulk out of your seams, roll your seam allowance over and stitch it down. The last step is to sew a binding around the edge of the outside, and around the hem of the sleeves.  


Vogue 8353 with Alteration

Finished gingham version

This pattern is out of print now, but I made it for my daughter last year.  She and I both liked the pattern and I figured she would look pretty cute in it.  As you can see from the pattern envelope illustration (bottom of the post), it is made from a one inch gingham check.  The skirt is an a-line from the waist. Before I had time to make the gingham version for her I found an orange and black zebra strip fabric in the Halloween clearance section.  This just happened to match her school colors and she had been begging for a school spirit dress.  I could test the pattern on the spirit dress so I could be sure about the size before I made the gingham version.

The orange zebra version turned out pretty cute.  She wore it each time they had spirit day.

The gingham version would be very unforgiving at the waist because to get the grey and black stripes, each white stripe is tucked into a pleat.  This also creates the fullness for the bust and the hips.  The waist is the size you need to be the most sure about before you cut out the pattern. Letting out any of the tucked pleats would result in an undesirable white line along the waist/midriff area.

By the time I made the gingham version it did not fit so nicely at the waist.  I am still not sure if this was because I may not have made a full inch tuck at each pleat on the orange version or if to be sure there was no white showing I made slightly larger than one inch tucks on the gingham version.  Either way it was a disappointing flop and I had to think about what to do so that I could salvage the dress.  It was just too tight at the waist and the pleats looked pulled and strained. One more black stripe width across the back or an extra half inch on both sides would have been enough to have prevented this tightness, but once it has been cut that alteration is not an option.

I let it hang on the rack for a couple of months before I figured out the best course of action.  Then I let it hang another month before I pulled out the scraps to see if there was enough to do what I had in mind.  When I finally checked, I realized it was about two inches short of what I needed, so I let it wait a while longer while I continued to think about what I might do to make this work. Piecing the fabric to make a big enough section was an option, probably the only option, but I didn't want to do that.  There was always give it to some one even thinner than my daughter, but she did not want anyone else to have "her dress".  That really was a valid argument because I rarely make a dress out of the same fabric as the illustration, but this dress just had to be made with the same fabric.  The fabric was the design element.

Altered Side with fabric splice.

The only way I could make this dress usable for her was to open the side seems, insert a splice the full length  of the dress plus hems from the underarm.  For the skirt portion, I made the splice portion wider on each side by two inches than the bodice portion and tucked the seams into one of the pleat areas so that it would not show.  To make sure it was even more invisible, I cut down the side seams of the skirt portion straight along black lines which changed the a-line skirt.  On top of that, I did have to piece the splice on one side, but with careful seam placement it was nearly invisible.  With the new splice, the seams were on a black and grey line making them nearly invisible.  The skirt lost the bias plaid match lines on the side, and all of the white that was on the side seams at the original waist.  The result was a better fit for her with the only white on the waist/midriff area at the front where the dress had buttons.

Now I had to resolve how this design change on the sides had changed the placement of the buttons. The original dress had buttons at about 3.5 to 4 inch spaces down the front.  To balance out the white squares I used them as placement for black buttons.  I had to add a few more buttons, but the result was a little more pleasing than standard button placement on the gingham. We never did find a wide black lace like the pattern version.

Vogue 8353 Pattern Envelope


Pomp and Circumstance

Today I was giving my daughter a ride to her job about 14 miles away.  She doesn't have her driver's license yet, but will soon.  We were about a mile from the house when she went on a rant about what a bad day she was having. Most of it starting with me not getting her up in time to be on time to her job.  I remarked that it was her job and I thought she would be responsible enough to set an alarm to get up on time. She continued with her comments remarking that instead of me telling her it was time to get up, or what time it was, that I was "conversating" her.

Now she is berating me and polluting the language.  "Conversate is not a word," I said.  "The word is conversation, you have a conversation or you converse you do not conversate. And I did tell you it was time to get up and that you should be moving around because we need to leave in about 20 minutes. We started a conversation the second time I went to your room to make sure you were up."

" I hate hearing your voice," she retorted, "I wish you would not even talk to me."

I had had enough of her disrespect for me, for her family, for her friends, for the language so I went on my own rant.  "You should probably not even be in my car.  That is no way to talk to some one who picked you up from work last night, stopped got supper for you, drove you back down near where I work to visit your friends then finally got home at about 7:00 last night after leaving work before 5:00 pm.  Now I am using my car, my gas and my time to drive you to work this morning!"  I think she might have wiped a tear away from her eye. It was uncharacteristic for me to push back and voice my opinion when she was disrespectful.

Pomp and Circumstance started playing on the radio and neither of us spoke all the way to her job. She got out of the car, slammed the door, marched into work.  Pomp and Circumstance ended just as she entered the building. It seemed appropriate. I think I just graduated from dealing with her sass and attitude.  I will let her figure out how to be a grown up, wake up on time and get herself to work.


Snowy Day Project

After they plowed the walkways.

Yesterday it snowed. I had the perfect snow day project too, a little quilt top to finish that I found in Fons & Porter’s Love of Quilting magazine, May/June 2009. It is a twin size quilt designed by Patti Carey, named Squares and Stripes.  It is made from 30 8.5” squares in 6 colors. This is not my usually choice for a quilt style but this one is special. I like the sashing and it is relatively easy. The sash pieces are made from a piece of fabric that is a multi-color stripe with a solid piece down each side. At first glance, the stripe looks like it has been pieced from tiny strips of fabric.

My version of  Squares and Stripes

The snowy day project was the border.  I thought the border should be a green color keeping with the theme of the stripes in the sashing.  I did not have any one color for the border and planned to use the scraps from the squares to create a pieced border.  Before I started piecing a border I asked my daughter what color she thought the border should be.  She said, “That border needs to be brown, probably the dark brown like this or that.”  She pointed out the darker color on one of the squares and the lighter brown on another.  I think she is right. Now I need to purchase a solid dark brown fabric to edge this quilt.

I made cookies for my snowy day project.

Chocolate Chip Cookies

Tomorrow's snowy day project, cleaning off the car.