Front Page, Outer Wear, The Big 4
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My First Pattern by Gertie – Butterick 6390

Back in September I attended my first proper meet up – Sewbrum.  I had an amazing day and met some fabulous ladies.  Sitting down for lunch outside a pub with lots of women I’d never met felt really strange, but it was stranger that in no time at all I felt like I’d know them all ages.


One lovely lady I got talking to was Lucy from Sew Essential. and not long after returning home she got in touch and asked if she could sponsor a post on my blog.  Could she!!  I was really excited, and it took ages for me to decide what to make.  I came up with a few ideas – I wanted to make a casual style jacket but in a dressy up style fabric.  I found Gertie’s close fitting button down jacket and thought it would be perfect for me as I’m short waisted and not very tall.


Lucy suggested their faux silk dupion.  I was sold!! It came it quite a few colours.  As I wanted my new jacket to be quite versatile and go with anything so I chose the gun metal grey.  The pattern in my size called for 2.2m if 115cm wide and 1.8m for 150cm wide.  They sent me 2m as this fabric measures 138cm across.


The jacket was only partially lined and as I’m trying to be in a bit of a stash bust phase I decided to find something in my stash to line it with.

This all happened in the run up to my birthday.  And if you remember I was looking into investing in a cover stitch machine as my hubby had generously offered to buy me one as we’d had to cancel my birthday weekend away.  Well, to cut a long story short, after a lot of research and a very informative chat with Angela (Lucy’s MIL) I only went a bought an Babylock Ovation from Sewessential!  So then it was really hard to get started on the jacket as I only wanted to sew with jersey fabric and try out my new toy on everything and anything stretchy.

I even tried to use it in the top stitching of the jacket….


I think you’ll agree that that was a bad move!  Luckily it didn’t leave any permanent marks on the fabric when I unpicked it.

The jacket was relatively straight forward.  I made a muslin which I’d definitley recommend as not only do you  get the fit right, it’s also a chance to practice piecing together the back.  The only adjustments I needed to make was to shorten the arm length by 1 inch and do a 1 inch big bicep adjustment.

It went together really easily.  My only hiccup was when I got a bit carried away with the heat setting when applying the interfacing.  I had a practice with some spare fabric and it seemed ok, but when I came to interface the front mid sections the fabric shrunk!  Not a lot but as the centre fronts of the jacket have built in facings and aren’t separate it distorted the fabric slightly.  It didn’t cause any problems sewing it as the faced parts were folded to the inside and the slight distortion isn’t noticeable, but it’s worth bearing in mind when using this fabric.  I measure the interfaced cuffs against the pattern pieces and needs to reduce my seams allowance by 1/8 inch.

So anyway, you don’t want to read about all the nitty gritty, I’ll do that in a separate post, including how I lined the sleeves – only the body is supposed to be lined.

I was so pleased and so giddy when I finished it I couldn’t wait until the next day for a photo shoot to here it is with my PJs straight after the last button was sewn on!


It’s first proper outing was last night.  I went to a black tie do and wore it with my Holly Jumpsuit that I made back in October.

I was really hoping to have a proper little photo shoot at the event but as anyone here in the UK knows we had horrendous rain yesterday.  I was stuck at a road traffic accident at work and was an hour late off which meant everything was a big rush, and everyone was being seated as we arrived so we didn’t get chance 😦

Tonight it’s had it’s second outing.  With jeans and a new self drafted top and it looked just as good casual as it did dressed up with heals and a jumpsuit.

As it’s a bit tricky so get good pics inside with a hubby that does’t quite grasp what a great blog photo is, and with me feeling all awkward (much easier with big camera and timer) I popped my new jacket on Gertrude and took some ‘proper’ photos.


And what about the buttons?? Those on IG will have seen these already.  I just can’t believe how well they go.  They’re from the swap table at Sewbrum – so a HUGE thankyou to whoever brought them to swap!

For the inside of the jacket I decided to go a bit quirky……

Here’s a close up in case you want to have a read of the lining!


How pleased am I with my new make??!!   It’s just got to be one of the best things I’ve made, I just love how it all worked out perfectly.  The fabric was a dream to work with (except with my too hot iron!), and it looks very silk like.  I pre washed it, it didn’t shrink, and it doesn’t crease.

I think I’ll be building my ‘going out wardrobe’ around this jacket as I really don’t want to take it off!


    • thanks Margaret! The buttons really do finish it off. I only found them at then end of last week when I was tying up – I forgot all about them and just by chance put them against the jacket. What a stroke of luck!! 🙂

  1. Looks great: the fit, the colour and the buttons. Very versatile. And I know what you mean about this weather being rubbish for blog photos!

  2. Ali, awesome make. Give yourself a pat on the back and a big glass of wine. I love love love the lining, to the point I’d be wearing it inside out 😂 The faux dupion is lush and how clever of you to make such a versatile garment. The dupion gives it that classy formal edge while the more fashion edge style allow for it to be an every day wear. CLEVER STICK!

    My non existent sewing atm will be kick started with…… Wait for it …… Baby bunting for a baby shower! Not exactly in the same league BUT if I do say so myself my bargainatious fabric from Walthamstow will look lubblie jublie 🤗

    I’m never sure how you find the time/ discipline in your busy life to make such great makes. I doff my cap to your finer time management skills lovely one . Samantha xx

    • I suggest to my hubby when I was taking the pics that I could wear it inside out! He looked slightly horrified! I think if I made it again I’d definitely made it reversible – only the fastening on the front would need adjusting. I’ve some more of the bubble fabric left so maybe I’ll be able to use that again.
      I sometime wonder myself where I get the time to do so much. I think the main thing is I don’t watch much TV (except at the minute when all my favourite programmes are on!), and working shifts gives me a lot of time to be selfish and get on with my own thing when everyone is at work or school. I think it’d kill me working monday to friday and coming home from work and having to make tea every night, and then been too knackered to do anything. :-0

  3. It looks really great, love the lining too. How fabulous to have made something that you can wear to a formal do and casually as well!

    • Thanks Ruth! I’ve so many garments in my wardrobe that are orphans and I hardly ever wear them I’m now trying to only make thinks that I’ll know I’ll get my wear out of.:-)

  4. It looks really classy Ali, and I would have never thought of Dupion and that style but it really works for going out and casual. I’m trying to make more neutrals, and olive, as you’re probably sick to hear, is v much on my radar so it’ll be great to see how we both do.

    • Thanks Karen! I’m not sick of hearing, it’s all very inspirational. I fancy this in a satin back crepe too with maybe the body crepe and the collar, cuffs and pocket in the satin. 😀

  5. Carolyn says

    Beautifully made, Ali! And I love the buttons! Looking forward to hearing more about how you lined everything. 🙂

  6. Such a fabulous jacket Ali, well done! It looks so professional and I love the quirky buttons and lining. Glad to hear you are loving your ovation, I’m knit crazy on my Babylock atm too!

    • Thanks Lucy! And thanks for sponsoring this post too. I’m so pleased how it all came together. It’s strange how I found the buttons and they were from the meet up and were just perfect!
      I’m going to the knitting and stitching show tomorrow (and the Big Vintage Sewalong Tea Party!) and can’t wait to hit the babylock stand. Hopefully I’ll be able to have a play with some of the different feet and start a wish list for Father Christmas! 🙂

  7. Fiona M says

    Love the jacket, it will go with so many things – and your hair looks fabulous in those Black Tie pics!

    • Thanks Fiona! It’s getting a bit easier to style my hair now I’m letting it grow. I have some big Babyliss curling tongs and it does it really quick, and gives it body rather than the frizz I’d get without it. 🙂

    • Thankyou! Isn’t sewing just the best – I knew in my head what I wanted as I find my RTW short denim jacket looks great with most things and I wanted something similar but dressier. I’d never have found this even after trawling the shops all day! 🙂

  8. A great fit and I love the different buttons, quirky but Classic at the same time. You’ll be wearing this for years!

  9. Love the fab hair do to go with the fab jacket! I’ll say again how much I love those buttons with it, too – they’re just perfect. Hmmm, I’ve got some smashing coasters made from that lining fabric from some lovely lady……xx

    • Oooo I wonder who that could be, lol! I’ve got some huge Babyliss tongs which make it have lots of body, it’s so quick to do but looks like I’ve just been to the hair dressers 🙂

  10. Pingback: Top 3’s of 2016 | T H I M B E R L I N A

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