This is the Guggenheim Coat in its completed state! I finally got around to doing the buttonholes and buttons today and once again dragged Dan out to take dozens and dozens of vanity photos so I could pick the ones that make me look least short. As you can see, the occasion called for some serious backcombing.

This coat is just McCall 5525 minus all the bells and whistles- no pocket flaps, no epaulets, no button bands, etc. I didn’t topstitch the seams either. I originally started with black topstitching, but the near-straight lines of stitching didn’t work well with the swirling black lines of the fabric so I unpicked it (note: unpicking triple straight stitch takes FOREVER.) But even though I eliminated a lot of the details, this coat still took a fair bit of time because I kept adjusting the fit. I didn’t make a muslin since I’ve made this pattern before, which means I just kept basting and ripping and basting and ripping to tweak it. I wanted a more fitted, dramatic silhouette than my Key Lime Trench (also McCall 5525, taken in just slightly at the waist).  For the Guggenheim coat, I took in a lot from all of the princess seams and side seams and narrowed it slightly at the shoulders. In the end, the fit is almost dress-like. It won’t work over anything bulky, but I don’t intend to wear it with anything bulky anyway. I made the collar and belt a little narrower and went with a longer length.

The fabric is a stretch cotton sateen (lovely to work with!) that I got a few weeks ago from Fabric.com. It must have been a popular buy and if you blinked you might have missed it. I was sort of keeping an eye on it for a couple of days, pondering whether it was too frivolous and unnecessary a purchase, and when I saw how quickly it was disappearing, I pulled the trigger. I made four fabric covered buttons out of white bits of the fabric because I wanted them to be unobtrusive to keep the aesthetic of the coat clean and minimal. Or as clean and minimal as one can get given that giant print.

The coat is lined in white Bemberg rayon, and because so many of you suggested piping, I decided to use some (actually just some black bias tape that I happened to have lying around rather than bona fide piping) between the lining and front facing. Thanks for the suggestion – snazzy!

I stuck with an all black and white ensemble for these photos, but I think that this coat is going to be surprisingly versatile for a crazy lady coat with a hugenormous floral pattern. I expect it will pair well with bright greens, yellows, reds, fuchsias, etc. But here’s a pop of color for those of you who are craving one now, in the form of the first dandelions of the season (I don’t have a lawn so I love dandelions):

I’m not usually one to make matchy accessories from remnants, or at least not wearing the garment and the matchy remnant accessories at the same time because I worry that it makes things look homemade.  (Evening dress and matching evening bag may be an exception.) But at some point I tied a scrap around my head and Dan responded very enthusiastically to it, so I stitched up a quick impromptu headband for the photos. I’m a sucker for a compliment. The ends are just fastened together with a safety pin because I was too lazy to dig out elastic :)

Anyway, I am totally getting mileage out of McCall 5525 pattern, and you can expect to see it again in leopard in the not-too-distant future.

Best of all? The Guggenheim Coat is finished just as spring is finally arriving!

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