Saturday, 6 February 2021

Quilted Sienna Maker Jacket

After my little stint of sewing quick jersey palate cleansers I was up for a more challenging project but still wanted to make something cosy, comfortable and appropriate for our current lockdown lifestyle. I've had this amazing cloudy quilted fabric from The Fabric Store stashed away awaiting the perfect project for a while and decided it was time for me to get my head down and put it to good use. It is so beautifully soft and spongy that I was tempted just to hem it and use it as a throw but in the end I kept coming back to the idea of turning it into a (hopefully!) sophisticated quilted jacket.


I've had my eye on the Sienna Maker Jacket from Closet Core Patterns for a while but was originally planning it in a cotton twill. It felt like a bit of a risk making this pattern in a quilted fabric. I couldn't exactly envision how the details were going to turn out and I wasn't 100% sure it would work but the risk paid off! Sometimes it pays to be creative with fabric choices although I would recommend carefully reading through the instructions before you start to see if you need to adapt any of the construction techniques to suit your fabric. I my case I opted to bind the raw edge of the facing as my fabric was quite thick to turn back and topstitch. I was conscious of bulk the whole way through and was particularly concerned about areas with lots of layers of fabric like the collar but it was absolutely fine. The fabric has a kind of strange construction as the middle layer of the 'quilt sandwich' which would commonly be a flat piece of wadding actually was formed of lots of separate little strands which were bulkier in some areas of the quilted design than others. It is hard to describe but the brilliant thing about it was that I was able to pull strands of the 'wadding' out of the seam allowances to reduce bulk. I considered choosing a thinner fabric for the facings but I'm glad I didn't as that might have changed the softness and structure of the main fabric.

Diary of a Chain Stitcher: Closet Core Patterns Sienna Maker Jacket in Quilted Cloque from The Fabric Store

The fabric was so lovely to work with! It was really malleable and responded well to steaming and pressing. Setting in the sleeves was a breeze. I'm so surprised to look back at the fabric listing and see that it is a polyester/viscose blend as it feels like an airy loosely woven cotton like a muslin or gauze. It is so soft and spongy against the skin. The right side is quilted with tiny stitches like you might see connecting the layers of a double gauze and puckers up in a design of grids and circles but the rear side is completely smooth. Such an unusual fabric. Despite being really soft the quilting gives it bounce and structure so it holds the shape of the jacket really well. The springy hand and puckered nature of the fabric (along with slight elastane content) does make it prone to stretching out when pressed so I had to be quite careful when pinning and pressing to make sure nothing was getting distorted and pockets e.t.c were sitting straight. 

Diary of a Chain Stitcher: Closet Core Patterns Sienna Maker Jacket in Quilted Cloque from The Fabric Store

I chose to make the hip length view B because I loved the design of the belt. It is attached to one side of the jacket rather than hanging loose through belt loops. It passes through a cleanly finished slit before looping through the d-rings attached with a tab on the other side. It does look a little odd and lopsided when left open but I doubt I'd want to wear this undone anyway. I found elements like the slot for the belt really satisfying to construct in this quilted fabric and even more satisfying to look at. I particularly liked the method for attaching the collar the way the collar and the way the top-stitching around it looks. It was quite straightforward to achieve a nice clean finish.

Diary of a Chain Stitcher: Closet Core Patterns Sienna Maker Jacket in Quilted Cloque from The Fabric Store

As usual when working on a project with lots of elements like this I jumped back and forth in the instructions a bit. I like to assemble small bits like pockets and belts ahead of time so they are ready to go when I reach that part. I love seeing the whole thing come together quite quickly once you've got the front, back and sleeves all ready to go. I found it difficult to achieve neat patch pockets at the top corners, partly because this fabric frays and falls apart a lot at raw edges but partly because the seam allowances weren't trued up on the pattern so once you've folded the raw edge in the seam allowance sticks out the top. My fabric was too bulky to fold this down in to the pocket so I had to trim it off after the fact leaving a small bit of raw edge and a point vulnerable to fraying. 

Diary of a Chain Stitcher: Closet Core Patterns Sienna Maker Jacket in Quilted Cloque from The Fabric Store

I loved the idea of the unique sleeve pocket, and enjoyed constructing it but in reality I probably won't use it. I'm toying with the idea of sewing it shut but it isn't at all that noticeable when worn as the structure of the fabric keeps everything sitting in place; it doesn't even need the popper/button to close it as it sits nice and flat against the arm. Ed said it looked like I'd made a mistake and put the sleeve on back to front or something! But he did also say the jacket looked really cool and a little bit Japanese so he is forgiven.

Diary of a Chain Stitcher: Closet Core Patterns Sienna Maker Jacket in Quilted Cloque from The Fabric Store

I wasn't feeling particularly motivated when I started this project so I skipped the muslin stage. I think that might have been a slight error as this feels a little large overall. It is not a huge issue as the fabric choice already gives it a slightly more relaxed and casual vibe but I would like to be able to pull the belt a little tighter. I quite often find Closet Core Patterns run a little large on me, or at least the proportions aren't quite right. They're just not drafted for my body type - some pattern companies I don't have to alter much at all but these I do. For this project I cut the size 8 as usual which is roughly my size. I'm thinking going forward I should go right down to a 4 at the bust to get a better fit across the shoulders and upper chest and do an FBA if necessary. 

Diary of a Chain Stitcher: Closet Core Patterns Sienna Maker Jacket in Quilted Cloque from The Fabric Store

The main issue I have with the fit is across the shoulders and that the armhole feels a little deep. It feels like I would have a better range of arm movement if the underarm seam went up more snuggly into my armpit. Perhaps I should have shortened the jacket slightly across the upper chest as it wouldn't hut for the belt to be a fraction higher too. If I'd chosen a stiffer fabric this would be a big problem but as this fabric is nice and soft it isn't enough of a worry to stop me getting a lot of wear out of this. 

Diary of a Chain Stitcher: Closet Core Patterns Sienna Maker Jacket in Quilted Cloque from The Fabric Store

I actually cut this project out ages ago and then got busy with work and didn't have the headspace for a big project with lots of pattern pieces. So I can't remember very clearly how hard I was trying with pattern matching when I cut this out but I've got a feeling the matching across the opening of the sleeve pocket was a complete fluke haha! I feel like I probably put some thought into the matching of the horizontal stripe in the quilting across side seams and this was worth while to keep the look clean without too many broken up lines. One side turned out better than the other so I'm assuming I cut it out on the fold and the underside wasn't lined up quite right! 
Diary of a Chain Stitcher: Closet Core Patterns Sienna Maker Jacket in Quilted Cloque from The Fabric Store

I was initially looking at very simple jacket patterns for this project as I felt the quilted fabric was probably enough on its own but now I'm delighted with how all the little design details sit on top of the fabric. I adore how this fabric looks topstitched! I was slightly concerned I might end up just looking like I'd wrapped myself in a duvet but the details definitely stop that effect. I really like that it has a smart look but is also so comfortable and cosy. I can see me wearing it around the house (keeping me warm while I'm sewing!) but also out and about. It felt good to get my teeth into a big project again and since making this I've been pushing myself to work with some of the more challenging fabrics in my stash and focus on my techniques. I'm looking forward to sharing more soon!

12 comments:

  1. That's a beautiful jacket, love all the details!

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    1. Thank you! Me too, I love constructing all the little details

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  2. I love this so much! It really looks great on you and I'm sure you'll get lots of use out of it.

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    1. Thank you! I hope so, I need to go through my wardrobe and try it with lots of different outfits!

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  3. Looks wonderful. Not too big. If attempting ths style again and with similar fabric. Maybe a lined pocket so there are no raw edges. Just a thought. You have made making a choice for a new style jacket for me a go.

    great work

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    1. Lined pockets is a fantastic idea thank you, wish I’d done that for this one as it would have saved a lot of fiddling around!
      I’m glad it doesn’t look too big, it just feels it, particularly the underarm

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  4. The jacket looks great on you. I made this in a dark suiting fabric and, like you loved all the little details. Also had difficulty with ode pesky pocket corners and wish I’d thought to line them. I’d definitely make this again but in a softer fabric like yours.

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    1. That is really good to know thank you, I am not alone with the pocket corners! I will line next time!

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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!