Like manna from heaven if you're into the tailoring thing. It's been said before that this pattern is worth its weight in gold purely for the 4 bits of paper that come with, and I honestly couldn't agree more. If I were to make another of this from scratch and following the word to the letter, I would still learn something new.
Couture vs. RTW Construction
You have the option of using couture techniques, or the quicker route of using ready-to-wear techniques. I made View A (couture) instead of View B (RTW), which uses horse hair canvas at the front and silk organza as underlining everywhere else. My fabric was loosely woven so I interfaced all the pieces with a really lightweight fusible to keep the tears to a minimum.
Sewing a notched collar shouldn't be this easy. But it really is! I also love that the collar is made up of three pieces - a stand, upper and under collar. The latter is cut on the bias and shaped so that when you turn it out, the seam line is just ever so slightly on the underside, rather than on the fold so it's visible. I think the term is 'allowing for turn of cloth'?.
It's not often I thrown on a jacket and have an instantly defined waist. Kudos to Claire for making a pattern that flatters one of my favourite sections of the female physique.
Corporate vs Casual
I had bought enough fabric to make a matching skirt... but really I'm loving this as a weekend thing with jeans. My jacket from The Vogue Suit gets a lot of wear this way too (in fact, it's easily the most worn item I've sewn yet), so now I can spread the wardrobe workload a bit.
Hand Worked Buttonholes
Maybe this doesn't quite deserve to be included in my favourite things. There's something amiss with my technique because my buttonholes don't look like Jeffery's, Marina's or Paco's. But they have shred apart my belief that couture = fragile. You could launch a rocket through those button holes and have them hold. They ain't going nowhere!
Fabric - Periwinkle Blue woven raw silk tussah from EmmaOneSock, and lemon yellow silk satin lining from Clegs. Inside you'll find horsehair canvas, silk organza, nylon fusible interfacing and a truckload of hand stitching.
Buttons - in self covered fabric from Buttonmania. Click here for hand worked buttonhole resources like gimp and silk buttonhole twist.
Why the GGQB acronym you ask? It stands for Governor General Quentin Bryce - my inspiration for both the fabric colour and the style. What a woman.
There was only one part in the instructions that left me a little confused - where you are required to 'tape the front'. It doesn't specify what kind of tape one should be using. Thankfully, Claire also talks about this in her Couture Sewing book, where she said she uses strips of silk organza. So that's exactly what I did (you can see my 'immaculate' fell stitching, pad stitching and tape application here). The only other thing is that there's no telling when you're supposed to remove the basting stitches. But hey, it's hardly a life changing decision!
My love of both wearing and making tailored jackets is well set to continue... I've already got the fabric and the pattern for my next tailoring project-to-be safely stashed away!
I'll be entering this puppy into Pattern Review's Lined Jacket Competition very shortly - so feel free to check out the competition (and my review here) and if you've been a PR member for 3 or more months - to vote! Preferably for me of course (voting starts September 1), but only as long as you think I'm worthy of it :)
I completely forgot to include some shots of the lining (click to enlarge), which is a requirement of the competition rules. So yay for more photos!