So much to cover today, friends!
First the big news. For the first time in my life I have no land line telephone service (and no 212 area code). Since both Michael and I have cell phones, and now that we have cable Internet (we needed the land line for our lousy DSL), we decided to turn it off. Since I rarely received calls on my land line anymore, it doesn't feel very different, but the event does warrant memorializing, don't you think?
Do you still have a land line?
In other news, we decided to skip the V-Day party last night. For one thing, it started too late, and I won't tell you how late to avoid embarrassing myself. I'm an early-to-bed, early-to-rise type, readers, and I hate to have my routine disrupted. Also, the coat (the coat! the coat!) isn't done yet. And it won't be done for a few days yet. We'll do a Cathy photo shoot on Saturday combining faux fur coat and black sequined pantsuit (remember that one?), maybe even featuring a few guest celebrities! Do you know any?
Right now, I'm trying to track down a bottle of Charlie to create the right uber-Seventies mood.
Now on to the coat. Yesterday was all about slit pockets. (For those just joining us, I've been following Kenneth King's instructions from an online faux fur coat-making class he led on Pattern Review a few years ago.) Here's how I made the pockets.
First, I couldn't conceal them in a seam, because the side seam of the coat is all the way back behind the arm (common with a two piece sleeve, I believe), as opposed to being directly under it. You can see that seam here, though I hope to brush it out a bit more:
After deciding where I wanted my pockets to go, I drew the pocket line on the inside of the coat and marked the ends with cold tape.
For the pocket bag, I used a pattern piece from an old Simplicity coat pattern I own. (I chose a 7" pocket opening based on the pattern piece.) This is an easy pattern piece to find, or you can trace one yourself. I cut the pockets out of some stretch poly satin from my remnant stash.
From the inside of the coat, I stuck a pin through the front of the coat at each end of the pocket. On the outside, I lined a ruler up between the protruding pins, and with combs, I parted my fur. I then taped the fur down on either side of the part. I used electrical tape because that was what I had. Whatever tape you use (King suggests masking tape), make sure you test it on your fur first -- you don't want gummy residue or any damage to the fur.
Now, on the wrong side (inside) of the garment, I centered a piece of grosgrain ribbon over my pocket line, and stitched it down along the length of the pocket. My ribbon was a little wider than necessary, but it was all I had. Plus it was pink!
On the right side, you will now place the two sides of your pocket bag, one side at a time. The pocket piece seam allowance will be placed over the center pocket stitch line, and then stitched -- from the wrong side, of course -- in a stitch line parallel to, but 1/8" to the side of, the center stitch line. On the outside of the coat, the seam allowance will be pinned back temporarily (before the next pocket side can be attached).
I stitched down the other side of the pocket in the same way, only with a stitch line on the other side of the center stitch line. (Don't worry about the stitches getting caught in the tape; the tape will be pulled off and is just to keep most of the hair out of the way.)
Here's what it looks like from the front (ideally, both seam allowances will be the same width, but this is OK).
On the inside, you now have three stitch lines: a center line, marking where the pocket will be slit, and two stitch lines on either side, holding either side of the pocket bag in place.
You will now slit through the coat along the center stitch line, from the inside. (As you can see, this is very much like making a welt pocket.) I did this with an X-Acto knife -- highly recommended.
|Keep the "V" cut at the end narrow: we don't need room for welts.|
The inside side of the pocket (which will end up closest to the coat) will be prick stitched along the edge. You can't press fur, and this will hold the pocket and pocket opening in place. The stitching goes through all layers.
The seam allowance of the outer side of the pocket (the one that will show) is stitched down with a running stitch. This is just to keep things tidy and in place.
You can now stitch the two sides of the pocket bag together with your machine. When you're done, stitch down the pocket with a catch stitch. Here's how mine looked. Not perfect, perhaps, but for me, this is pretty good!
And here's the pocket from the outside:
NOTE: It is VERY important that before you attach your pocket pieces, you know exactly how they'll look pulled through to the back, so that 1) they're facing in the correct direction, and 2) the side you want on the outside of the pocket ends up there. This can be a bit of a mind twister, but can't be skipped.
My second pocket was better than my first and I'm sure my eighth would be better than my seventh, but whatever. The beauty is that from the outside, slight imperfections don't show-- such is the miracle of faux fur.
I hope this is helpful to those of you eager to add slit pockets to a faux fur coat you're making, or maybe wanting to add pockets to Grandma's old mink!
OK, folks, no rest for the weary. Time to get to work.
Have a great day, everybody!