Sewing a spring A-line jacket and a flowered skirt

A-line trench 1

I saw a sewn sample of this A-line trench jacket at Hollyhill Quilt Shoppe, and asked my mom for the pattern – and technical assistance – for my birthday this year.  Surprisingly, I was able to sew the entire trench with minimal assistance, but I did need her expertise in fashioning the lining, which wasn’t part of the pattern.  I can follow a sewing pattern, but improvising – either by changing up or adding to what’s written – is definitely not my strong suit.

A-line trench 3

The pattern is Indygo Junction Midtown Trench IJ866 – I sewed View A in size Large.  The fabric is Martinque, by 3 Sisters for Moda, in color Coral.  Although the pattern calls for interfacing only in the collar, because my fabric was just cotton weight, I also interfaced all of the major pieces (fronts, sides, and back).

A-line trench 4
The 1 1/4″ buttons are from The Button Emporium and Ribbonry in downtown Portland

The result was heavyweight enough to be called a jacket (I think that without the additional interfacing and lining, it would fit and feel more like a big shirt, unless you used a more heavyweight fabric than cotton).

A-line trench 2

A-line trench 5

I have been looking for a very shot, flow-ey skirt for summer and haven’t found anything I like, so I used Amy Butler’s Barcelona Skirt pattern (size large) and cotton voile fabric and lining to make one.  The exterior fabric is Valori Wells Nest Cotton Voile Berries in color Rose, and the lining is a simple white cotton voile.

spring skirt 1

I sewed the layered skirt version of the pattern – if you look closely, you can see that the skirt is made in four layers of the same fabric, with the raw edges exposed, so that they will eventually fray and give the skirt an interesting look.  I’d like to try this again, with either different fabrics for each of the layers, or a heavier-weight cotton (so that the fraying effect would be more noticeable).

spring skirt 2
My daughter Bella says she likes this fabric because it reminds her of the clovers in “Horton Hears a Who”

The skirt is very quick and easy to sew, with the exception being the invisible zipper (which requires a specialized foot for the sewing machine).  Even the zipper was quick once I figured out how to pin it in, but it was tricky getting the seam closed where the bottom of the zipper meets the back seam of the skirt.  Amazingly, the fit was spot-on and didn’t require any adjustment of the side seams or any more of a hem than the pattern called for.

spring skirt 3
The invisible zipper was somewhat challenging to sew in, but I was able to get it lined up correctly so that it really is “invisible”
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