Thursday, July 13, 2017

Grainline Studio Tamarack Jacket - again!

We're revisiting the Grainline Tamarack Jacket pattern on the blog today, because after trying on Jane's excellent version I knew I wanted some warm, quilty goodness of my own.

I also had a very specific hole in my wardrobe to fill. I needed something in the form of a jacket or cardigan, hip length and (somewhat predictably) black. Something I could get away with wearing both inside and out. I'd been admiring the gorgeous Bernadette Jackets made by Kate and Klarissa at Bombazine, and thought I could crop the Tamarack to a similar length. Three cheers for sewing, hey?

After choosing the outer fabric (a basic black top-dyed Japanese cotton, not online), and inner (100% Australian wool batting, also in store) I kept returning to this gloriously pretty and slinky Rifle Paper Co. for Cotton and Steel rayon for the lining. 

I’ve done a bit of quilting before but I was worried if I was up to quilting with rayon - I was worried it's slinkiness might see it end up a puckered mess once it met with my walking foot. In the end though pretty won out, and I found myself doing something I never thought I'd do - using a spray on quilt basting glue. (Insert scream-face emoji - not the most environmentally sound choice!) Thankfully, Jane had an old can left over from a previous stencilling project, so hey, we were just combining forces and using up what was already out there in the world on this occasion. 

A note on the quilting if you've not done much before and you're considering using a less-than-stable fabric for your Tamarack: baste then baste some more! My basting strayed way into OTT territory. I used the wicked spray glue, (both sides), plus I did more hand basting than the pattern recommended. But all that nerdy preparation paid off and it quilted like a champ: nothing fancy,  just straight lines, 3.5 inches apart as per the pattern suggestion - I didn't want to push my luck. I used my walking foot and also did a few test runs on offcuts to be sure I was happy with the stitch length, tension etc.

After the quilting this came together very quickly. I enjoyed sewing this more than any other garment I've made. Perhaps it was the quilting, perhaps it was knowing that this will fill a much needed gap in my wardrobe or perhaps it's just a fun pattern? Perhaps because it's terrifically warm but light to wear and, handily, mid-winter here? Perhaps the pretty lining had an intoxicating effect (could be... check the slightly mad eyes above).  In any case, I've worn this almost every day since sewing the last of that binding into place. Finally - an excuse to walk around in a quilt! Don't know why I waited so long. 

Pattern notes:
- I machine stitched the binding on one side, then hand stitched it into place on the inside. Jen's instructions for mitred corners are great! Mine aren’t perfect, but they were very satisfying to make.
- I cropped around 20cm off the length (comparing it to a much loved denim jacket, about 60cm from neck to hem). 
- Because I took so much off the length, I omitted the welt pocket. 
- This cropped and pocketless version of the Tamarack used 1.9m of 110cm wide fabrics for each lining and outer, plus an extra half metre of outer fabric for the binding.

 - Fiona & Jane xx