Friday, 7 December 2018

Denim McCalls 7330 Jumpsuit

Diary of a Chain Stitcher: McCalls 7330 Jumpsuit in Indigo Denim from Fabric Godmother

The story of this project begins with a utility style jumpsuit I spotted on the high street when I was shopping for a show a couple of months back. It is quite unusual nowadays for a RTW garment to catch my eye in the way this did but I just knew it was the kind of clothing I would wear day in, day out. I did consider buying it but when I tried it on didn't love the fit and there were a couple of things I wanted to change about it; namely the lack of hip pockets (my hands felt like they had nowhere to go!) and the elasticated waist which I never find very comfortable in a woven garment. If I didn't sew I might have bought it anyway but luckily I do and I knew I could make myself a version I loved even more!

Diary of a Chain Stitcher: McCalls 7330 Jumpsuit in Indigo Denim from Fabric Godmother

I spent quite a lot of time looking for a similar pattern and put out a poll on Instagram for ideas before settling on McCalls 7330. Jasika Nicole actually posted a very similar hack of this pattern a couple of weeks back. Thanks for the advice if you put forward a suggestion! Since then a few more patterns along a similar line have popped up if you are looking for one; the Jean-Paul Coverall from Ready to Sew, Intrepid Boilersuit from Alice & Co and the upcoming Len Coveralls from Sugardale. The fabric I've used is this Soft Indigo Stretch Denim from Fabric Godmother. It is the perfect mid weight for this style and is wonderfully soft which works better than a crisp stiff denim would for that gathered bodice. The little bit of stretch combined with that soft finish makes it so comfortable to wear too! I actually picked this fabric in person at one of the Fabric Godmother Open Days, I was drawn to the rich indigo blue colour. The colour has maintained it's intensity when washed and didn't stain my hands at all while I was working with it which sometimes denim in colours this deep can do!

Diary of a Chain Stitcher: McCalls 7330 Jumpsuit in Indigo Denim from Fabric Godmother

I say this is McCalls 7330 but I've actually made quite a lot of changes to the pattern to get it to look more like the inspiration. One of the bigger changes was giving it a wider leg. I used the leg pattern pieces of the Persephone Pants as a guide to the shape. I pinned my McCalls pattern pieces in place on the fabric then laid the Persephones on top, aligning the grainline, the innermost point of the crotch and the top corner of the side seam. The crotch shapes were completely different which was quite interesting, although I didn't expect them to be the same because the two styles have a very different fit. I drew with chalk around the Persephone Pants pieces straight on to my fabric to give me my new cutting line. Before cutting I measured the length of the side seam and inside leg to check the back and front still matched.

Diary of a Chain Stitcher: McCalls 7330 Jumpsuit in Indigo Denim from Fabric Godmother

Looking at the pattern pieces for the bodice I noticed that the waistband actually sits below the natural waist on the high hip. I wanted the waist to be at my narrowest point so shortened the bodice by 1 1/4" at the lengthen/shorten line. To compensate for that and make sure the jumpsuit wasn't too short in the body I lengthened the rise of the trouser pieces by the same amount at the lengthen/shorten line. It turns out that I probably didn't need to lengthen the rise as the crotch feels quite low. I actually wish I'd remembered the fact that I usually have to take some length out of the body of big 4 patterns as I am quite short in this area. I did this on my denim McCalls 6696 shirtdress and that fits like a dream and this feels like I have too much space in the shoulder because the waistband wants to rides up. I think I should have shortened the bodice by another inch. When I can muster up enough patience I will probably unpick my lovely topstitched waistband to do that!

Diary of a Chain Stitcher: McCalls 7330 Jumpsuit in Indigo Denim from Fabric Godmother

The inspiration jumpsuit didn't have a yoke but I really liked this feature on the pattern and the fact that it added another opportunity for topstitching (my favourite!) so kept it in. I loved the pocket detail on the inspiration garment so decided to add the little topstitched tucks to my breast pockets. I added an extra 4cm of width to my pocket pieces when I cut them so I could use 2cm for each tuck. I made and stitched down the tucks before doing anything else with the pocket pieces. I also wanted to add pocket flaps so I cut 4 rectangles at the same width as the pocket pieces (without the extra for the tucks) and at 5cm deep plus seam allowance.

Diary of a Chain Stitcher: McCalls 7330 Jumpsuit in Indigo Denim from Fabric Godmother

I cut a tie belt for the waist but did without belt loops so I could wear it without too. The belt is simply two long rectangles of fabric stitched together, turned through and topstitched. It is 130cm long and 5cm wide plus seam allowance. I opted not to interface the tie belt as I wanted the ends to stay nice and soft and hang naturally.

Quite a lot of jumpsuits in this coverall style have a loose fit around the waist and one of the reasons I went with this pattern over the others was the inclusion of a waistband giving more shape. I think I've said before that gathering is probably my least favourite sewing technique so I wasn't delighted to see that not only is the bodice gathered into the waistband but the trousers are too. I was tempted to take this out by turning it into darts but as the inspiration garment had a gathered effect created by the elasticated waist I stuck with it. If I'd been making it in a stiffer or heavier denim it would have been a bulky disaster but this soft stuff gathers really well. In hindsight the best solution would have been darts rather than gathering in the trouser and possibly the front bodice but keeping the gathering in the back. I'd like those trousers to fit more closely around the hips, more like the style of the Persephone pants actually so perhaps I should have used the whole pattern piece from those and the bodice and pockets from this rather than just the leg shape below the hip!

Diary of a Chain Stitcher: McCalls 7330 Jumpsuit in Indigo Denim from Fabric Godmother

For reference I cut the size S when the envelope recommended a M, the small is actually a good 2-3" below my measurements and is still fairly roomy. I find the amount of ease included in the big 4 patterns pretty exasperating, particularly when it bears no resemblance to the sample shown on the pattern envelope in terms of fit. I tend to always go down a size if not two and will check the finished garment measurements carefully or measure the pattern pieces to determine the appropriate fit.

Diary of a Chain Stitcher: McCalls 7330 Jumpsuit in Indigo Denim from Fabric Godmother

The shape of the collar is quite round, emphasised by a fairly wide neckline for this kind of collar with stand and the front corners are quite square. I'm quite enjoying this though and I like that rather than buttoning right up to the collar there is a slight v-neck. It adds a feminine touch. The stretch in the denim does make it a little more difficult to get crisp pointed corners as it is easy to stretch things out of shape with aggressive use of a point turner! Some of mine are a little more rounded than I would like. But the denim more than makes up for this with the way it moulds and shapes so beautifully with steam and holds a nice clean edge too.

Diary of a Chain Stitcher: McCalls 7330 Jumpsuit in Indigo Denim from Fabric Godmother

Assembling the fly felt super easy although it was a little nerve wracking stitching around the fly in such a contrasting topstitch thread! I realised afterwards that what made it feel so easy is that this pattern doesn't include a fly shield which is a bit odd. The back of the zip is completely exposed which I thick could be a little uncomfortable but it is not a close fitting style and has been fine so far. I chose to use a metal jeans zip as I thought this would look most professional against the denim but the pattern suggests a regular trouser zip so perhaps that is why there is no shield. I'm really pleased with my finishing all the way down the centre front; from the fly to the waistband overlap which closes with a hook and bar to the buttoning plackets on the bodice.

Diary of a Chain Stitcher: McCalls 7330 Jumpsuit in Indigo Denim from Fabric Godmother

I took inspiration for my topstitching from the white on navy detailing on the workwear which is so on trend at the moment. I used Col. 01 Gutermann rPet recycled sew-all thread for topstitching, it is slightly off white as the white white felt too harsh against the indigo. I wanted contrast but wanted to feel like it belonged too. I didn't use the thicker topstitching thread as I was worried it would all get a bit too cartoon like, I prefer a subtler effect! I spent quite a lot of time deliberating where to topstitch and then which side of the seam. In a couple of places I actually topstitched both sides of the seam which I love the look of; I did the underarm, bodice side seam and inside leg but felt it was a little much down the trouser side seam too. I originally topstitched the pocket flaps on but this looked a little odd so I redid it so you can't see the stitching. I topstitched at 1/4" away from the seam which is further away than I would usually do. I think it makes it stand out more as an intentional design feature.

Diary of a Chain Stitcher: McCalls 7330 Jumpsuit in Indigo Denim from Fabric Godmother

The wooden buttons are from my stash but I believe I originally got them in John Lewis on little cards. I was planning on using bigger buttons like the RTW inspiration but those buttons looked a bit odd on the slim plackets of the McCalls pattern. I love the combination of natural wood and denim and the pop of contrast from the white button holes too.

Diary of a Chain Stitcher: McCalls 7330 Jumpsuit in Indigo Denim from Fabric Godmother

The inspiration jumpsuit had a cropped leg which I really loved but I've already got quite a few pairs of cropped trousers in my wardrobe and with the cold weather around the corner I decided a full length on these would probably be more practical. The length of the trousers was surprisingly on the short side when I first tried them on and I had already added about an inch when cutting as I spotted that the Persephone pieces where shorter. The pattern calls for a hem 1" deep which I would have rather done as I like a deep hem with topstitching on these styles but to get the full length I wanted I had to resort to overlocking the raw edge and turning up just half and inch. I'd love them to be even longer so I could pair the jumpsuit with wedge heels and big hoop earrings for a real seventies vibe!

Diary of a Chain Stitcher: McCalls 7330 Jumpsuit in Indigo Denim from Fabric Godmother

Head to toe denim feels like quite a style statement but I'm in love with the look and finish of this. It is so close to the perfect jumpsuit I had in my head and I'm slightly kicking myself for skipping a muslin because I was so keen to wear it. My issues with the bodice length and amount of gathering could have been easily remedied had I done so. Let that be a lesson to us all! Thanks Josie at Fabric Godmother for making my solving my jumpsuit dilemma and making this a reality! 

8 comments:

  1. Ah! I love this! I’ve been thinking of making a jumpsuit and have that McCall’s pattern, but I think I’m worried about fit. I really like what you’ve done with this. It turned out so good!

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    1. There is a lot to think about with fit but as I was going for a fairly relaxed look I wasn't overly worried. I think the biggest thing to think about is the length through the body. Once you have that right you can tweak the fit across chest, waist and hips more easily/ Give it a go!

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  2. This looks amazing! I love the topstitching and the buttons.

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  3. love your jumpsuit and all the fab top stitching!

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    1. Thank you! I love doing topstitching and was really pleased with the colour combination on this

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  4. Wow, this looks fantastic! It fits you perfectly.

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    1. Thanks very much Shirley. It is a more relaxed fit than I am used to but is o so very comfortable!

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I love hearing from readers of my blog so please feel free to leave a comment letting me know what you thought about this post/make! Any hints or tips to improve my sewing are always much appreciated too!