10.22.2012

Oliver + S School Days Jacket: A Few Tips

The Oliver + S School Days Jacket pattern has been well loved around here.  I've made it three times (here, here and here) and a hybrid version of it once (here).   Unfortunately, my third version didn't hold up so well based on some of the materials I chose.  It sat on my shelf f o r e v e r waiting to be repaired.  Last month, after a cold snap blew through, I finally forced myself  to take it apart and fix it.  Ugh.  Mending is definitely my least favorite kind of sewing.  In case it's yours too, here are a couple of tips.

1.  I bought my leather lace at Joanns.  This was a mistake.  Perhaps I bought the wrong kind (?) but they snapped in half after only a few wears. This time I ordered deertan lace.  It was inexpensive, crazy soft, and really durable.  (Edited to add:  Unfortunately my deertan lace also broke!  Such a bummer!)

{A few people have told me they've had trouble sewing through leather cording.  It might help to change your needle to one that's specifically designed for sewing through leather.  I bought mine from Hobby Lobby.  I found this particular cording was thin enough that I didn't need to switch my needle and used a regular old universal without a hitch.}

 toggles and lace, take 1 (wah, wah)

2.  In the past, I've ordered my toggles here.  I've been happy with both their products and their fantastic customer service.  I'm not sure what happened this time, but the toggles didn't wear well (see the above picture).  Jude only wore the jacket a few times but these toggles look so, shall we say, distressed?  I switched them out with some white plastic ones, from the same company.  (Or "shark teeth" if you're trying to make them sound super cool to a seven year old boy.)



3.  Jude asked that we use fleece for the lining of his jacket.  I can't speak for others, but I personally would not use fleece again.  Because my fleece was a knit material and the wool is a woven, I experienced considerable stretch on the fleece with wear.  It even stretched out of the jacket sleeves, looking like I had folded the sleeves over.

Since Jude's grown a lot since last year, I had to take out the hem on the sleeves, adding about an inch to the length.  There was enough stretch that I could lengthen the wool sleeve without lengthening the knit fleece lining at all.  I think this will fix the problem and that lining will now stay put.  (Fingers crossed.)  Just something to consider if you line with a knit when your outer material is a woven. 


4.  I'd recommend cutting the pocket and the pocket lining from the same (outer) fabric.  Otherwise, I've found I can see the pocket lining when looking from certain angles, even after trying to press the lining in as best I could.  I don't care for that look.  I'd like it to either be intentionally contrasting or not at all contrasting.


Outside of these snafus, I've been fantastically pleased with how well these jackets have held up.  Jude wore the first jacket I made for two years, which is part of the reason I was able to drag my feet on fixing this version.  Indigo wore hers well and often and now Evie wears it and absolutely adores it... much to Indigo's chagrin. 

3 comments:

  1. I had the same experience with the pocket lining - but I didn't notice it when the jacket was worn. My toggle cords wore out and broke on 2 School Days jackets that I have made. I used heavy cotton cording for replacement cords and it is fraying. I couldn't get a needle through the leather cording. It is a pain to fix the cording because you have to take the placket apart. The next time I repair the jacket, I am going to use leather patches.

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  2. I had the same experience with the pocket lining - but I didn't notice it when the jacket was worn. My toggle cords wore out and broke on 2 School Days jackets that I have made. I used heavy cotton cording for replacement cords and it is fraying. I couldn't get a needle through the leather cording. It is a pain to fix the cording because you have to take the placket apart. The next time I repair the jacket, I am going to use leather patches.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Such a bummer! I found this particular cording was thin enough for my needle to get through. But you can also buy a needle specific for sewing through leather - called a leather needle (super creative name, right?). :)

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