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Jul 15, 2016

Patternmaking Class Project #2: Shawl-Collar Jacket

Friends, this week I drafted my own pattern for a double-breasted, shawl-collared, raglan-sleeved, princess-seamed ladies jacket.

Say that ten times fast!

Our assignment for this coming Monday is to sew up a muslin (right side only) and today I (nearly) finished mine (up top).  I haven't decided how I want to finish the sleeve edge yet and, since this is just the right side, I need to replace those buttons (just pinned on for the photo) with buttonholes.

Overall I'm happy with it good considering how much is going on.  We were required to include the raglan sleeve and the shawl collar; everything else was up to me.  In addition to making it double-breasted and using princess seams, I added a pocket on the side front panel, an inverted pleat in the sleeve with contrast underpleat, and a shaped hem in front.  My contrast fabric is a vintage cotton floral fabric with a chintz-like glossy finish.  I used it for the shawl collar, the facings, the underpleat, and the pocket trim.

Last Monday, our professor posted photos of garments with raglan sleeves (for inspiration) and showed us how to draft the raglan sleeve using our original sleeve sloper and torso sloper.   She also taught us how to draft a shawl collar.  After her lectures, we have to then draft our own versions using our own slopers.

I wouldn't say the drafting is hard, but there are a lot of steps involved and lots of room for error if you aren't paying close attention.   The draft becomes the template for a pattern of our own design incorporating the shawl collar and raglan sleeve.

The inspiration for my inverted pleated sleeve was this illustration from Patternmaking For Fashion Design by Helen Armstrong.  (I own the 3rd Edition.)

More jacket muslin pics:

I'm happy with my jacket overall.  What took me longest was to create all the individual pattern pieces and make sure they all have seam allowances, notches, and are correctly labeled.  I'll review them all before Monday to make sure.

And that's it.  Next week we're drafting a notched-collar jacket with dolman sleeve.  Only two more weeks for class, alas.

BTW, my professor was very happy with my dropped shoulder assignment from last week.  And, naturally when she's happy, I'm happy.

Have a great day, everybody!

This should hang better on the the dressform it was drafted for -- a 12.  Mine is a PGM 8.


  1. You're gaining so many skills! Well done. You can draft for me any day. ;)

  2. What a coincidence! I am working on the men's jackets for my ballroom dance group. We are doing a dance to a medley of James Bond movie music, so I want to do a white tuxedo/cocktail jacket a la Sean Connery/Roger Moore. I decided a shawl collared, single button, ventless, all white with white satin lapels and welt pockets was the ticket. Digging out my Kawashima drafting book, I was reminded establishing the roll line is the most critical starting point. At the closure near the waist, it must start at the extension (3/4") of the button (break point), and end at the shoulder line extended (app. 1 1/8") at the neck. After setting the roll line, it's just connect the dots. The other crucial detail is deciding how wide you want the lapel, I copied a Missoni tux I had in my closet, but I noticed Russell Wilson (Seahawks quarterback, Go HAWKS!) was sporting some pretty wide shawls for the ESPY Awards show, so I just might widen my lapels a 1/4".

    I like how your prof combines several important flat pattern techniques in one project, and it is perspicacious of you to use even more techniques to experiment with. You are definitely a teacher's pet, no wonder she is so happy with your work !

  3. I love seeing what you are working on. I drafted my first notched collar using Suzy Furrer's technique. I was so proud of myself! Drafting yourself gives you so much freedom.

  4. Lovely jacket! I wish I had those skills myself. If I ever become super rich, can I hire you to design patterns for me to sew??

  5. SeamsterEast at aolJuly 17, 2016 at 10:21 AM

    I am amazed at how rapidly your skills are developing.

  6. I appreciate that you are taking the time to post about your work considering how busy you must be with this class. Trying something new in addition to the given assignment is a great idea. You will get feedback and input from the instructor while it is available. I enjoyed the dropped sleeve jacket and think you shouldn't worry about the look too much even though I really liked it. Getting value from your class is important. Your designs will come together in something other than muslin and half garments.

  7. Love the stack of pattern pieces! If people realized how much goes into a well designed garment, they would certainly skip buying some of the crap indie patterns that abound on the internet. Your half muslin reminds me of those costumes where half of the garment is male and the other female. Great job!

  8. You're making great strides in your class! This project is wonderful and I love our details! Good luck with your course!!

  9. Im so jealous! Wish i could take those classes all over again

  10. Wow, so gorgeous! I've only visited NY once, and I made it a point to visit FIT and tour the little museum, and go to Mood fabrics. It was so awesome. I can't wait to go back. I'd love to take classes as well.

  11. Hi Peter,
    this course seems pretty amazing. Would love to join you :-)
    Greetings from Rotterdam,


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