So the observant of you will see that the front of my jacket has now been covered in rows of pretty basting stitches…..
The reason, of course, is to hold the interfacing in place. Now a tailored jacket has a multitude of interfacing components, adding structure, shape and weight. I am not a tailor, just an amateur sewist who likes to make tailored things, so I will show you my (easier) method of getting the tailored look.
Cut a nice piece of woven canvas fabric: (nice soft and flexible). Use the front pattern piece as a guide but cut away from shoulder, through breast to hem (make a nice gentle curve).
Carefully baste the canvas to the inside of the front fabric. Take your time and use loose unequal basting stitches. Remember it needs to conform to the shape of the wearer! The canvas will ‘float’ between the fabric and lining. It will only be held to the structure along the front edge of the jacket and across the shoulders. So go ahead and sew the canvas to the seam of the front shoulder. I use a nice small hand sewn backstitch.
Although it is a little tricky, I find that after sewing the canvas to the shoulder, put the jacket on the mannequin or model (the right way out!) and get the canvas in place underneath. Then baste to the curve of the front (very carefully if being worn by a human!). Don’t worry if it doesn’t line up exactly on the front edge but make sure it sits well against the body. Now turn the jacket inside out and mark the seam line on the canvas (from lapel corner to bottom hem line). Also mark the roll line (the line where the lapel rolls over) and you will have drawn a triangle shape at the top of the lapel (this is important!)
In the last post I discussed the merits of hand stitching and I am going to introduce you to another hand sewn stitch…..
The Pad stitch. This is a stitch you may not have come across but is invaluable in many tailored items. The pad stitch is normally used to hold interfacing material to the fabric and allow shape to be created. In a jacket, for example there will normally be one or more layers of interfacing material to give shape to the front, lapels and collar. The lapels and collar in particular would be Pad stitched allowing you to join the layers of fabric and interfacing, creating shape and, if done well, you won’t even notice the stitches.
The stitch pattern forms a diagonal with the needle passing through the fabric parallel to the previous. Here I have started at the top and worked down. The needle is taking around 1cm through the fabric, just catching the layer below.
The next row of Pad stitches are then worked from bottom to top in the same manner. Repeat until the Pad stitched area is complete.