I've acquired a bit of a coat collection over the last year. Two of these beautiful coats were given to me, one was purchased at a Vintage Fashion Faire and I even made two myself - a Black 1920's Straight Coat & a Red 1930's long swing coat. For the coats, I didn't make, some of my favorite acquisitions needed a little freshening up and/or restoration.
My mother-in-law bequeathed me this beautiful, long, winter white cashmere coat, when she passed away in 2005. It's been stored away in the attic for all this time. In my recent attempts to clean and de-clutter our entire house, I unearthed this coat. My memory of this piece was that it was too big and that it's style was a bit 1990's for my taste. As I took it out of hiding, and actually tried it on, I realized it had incredible potential and I new Sandy would have loved to see me re-work this coat into something that I loved to wear.
Discovering the coat reminded me of the post from the Flashback Summer Blog, where wrote about how she remodeled a 1980's coat into a 1930's style coat. So off I went into what I'm calling, "Phase One" of this Coat transformation. It didn't actually need that much of an overhaul. Phase one, was just about adding snaps to the neck and lapel, so that I could snap a fur collar on and off and interchange the colors as needed.
A few years ago, my mom gave me several fur collars that she found on eBay and I think this coat is the perfect vehicle for the collars. "Phase Two" will involve buttons, buttonholes and a back strap that should give it more of a Phryne Fisher look.
Next up is one of my favorite Jacket purchases of 2016 - this beautiful vintage Chinese embroidered silk coat.
This is one of my FAVORITE PIECES EVER! and it gets worn a few times a month. Needless to say, when purchased, it was already beginning to shred in the back neck lining and also on the sleeve cuff edges. With a little help from some strategic patches of black silk Georgette, I have managed to extend it's life just a wee bit longer.
For the cuffs, I rolled back the fraying edge and stitched a piece of Georgette to the cuff edge, folding it to the inside, slip stitching it to the lining. I then hand prick stitched the cuff edge for reinforcement. This process enclosed the frayed and strengthened the material of the cuff.
For the back neck I used a similar method, but used a double layer of Georgette for ease of sewing.
My neighbor Joyce gifted me a 1930's black velvet jacket that belonged to her grandmother. It is a gorgeous style that hangs straight to my hip line with a bit a bit of shirring on the front shoulder seam, a short collar and slightly puffed sleeves.
This is such a beautiful coat, but the inside lining was both bulky and stained from use and age. It need a new lining. In fact, I wore it without the lining, which was removed last month, to an Art Deco Society event in January, which made me quite nervous.
As you can see from the photos, the staining was quite bad. Because the fit was tight in the armhole, I decided to use a much lighter weight lining fabric, and ended up with a high quality fuchsia pink polyester lining. Not period correct, but I think it will hold up and the color is amazing.
Because of the stiffness of the original quilted lining, and the way the garment was constructed, it was simple to use the original lining pieces as a pattern for the new lining. It sewed into the inside facings quite easily, around the front edge and neck and the bottom edge was hemmed and hung loose from the body, which made sewing the lining to the sleeves, at the cuff edge, quite easy.
These last two projects were completed very quickly with satisfying results. I can't wait to get started on Phase 2 of my white coat.
Until Next Time, Happy Sewing!