Essential sewing keeping me clothed and sane

SWAP A1 (again) & B2


I asked, you answered, I acted….

SWAP Combination A, first garment looked like this



I listened and contemplated your very appreciated comments (thank you), then I got to work……….

Method: Lob off a wack of fabric from the bottom and remove patch pockets.


Put on Doris and pin out two shaping darts at the back

and two fitting darts on the front – sew.

Fold over the big collar to narrow it and do some stuff with trims and topstitching along the hem, darts and other edges

Make a buttonhole and sew on an almost coordinating button found in stash. My little Janome’s buttonhole contraption won’t sew a hole for a button this big so I just cut a rectangle and small stitched in place for extra reinforcement. The fleece won’t fray.

So almost back to the original plan. I should have stuck to it the first place and not try to be smart.


Worn today with the first garment for SWAP combination B (slate greys).


The most delicious Italian finest fine wool in tiny herringbone bought from Joel & Sons in their end of year remnant sale. Made into Vogue 9162. I am planning on making all three items from this pattern for SWAP B. The pattern includes a loose-fitting, lined jacket with welt pockets, an oversized shirt and these wide-legged pants.

Slide3The wide legged trousers have in-seam side pockets and an elasticated waist (honestly, I really did type that and I made them and I wear them!).

Let’s have a word about elasticated waists – the good things are that you don’t need a matching zip, buttons, hooks and eyes to finish; easy to make; easy to fit; easy to pull on and off. The bad things are that it’s an elasticated waist! Gathering, bunching, I can’t help associating them with women of a certain age……and it feels like I’m not sewing a ‘real’ garment and taking an easy way out.


Anyway, the trousers are actually quite good. They are supposed to worn with loose shirts on the outside to hide the elastic, so nobody but you and me will ever know. Just in case I ever decide to wear a short top or tuck in a shirt I added belt loops and made a button belt for a more polished look.


The trousers are unlined so I always wear my trouser-petticoat to prevent bumming and kneeing in the fine wool. These are always excellent for extra warmth in wintery weather.

BTW – just look at the difference in my colouring when I wear just dark grey and how much warmer I am wearing the pink jacket, so I might now have to rethink the solid grey combination for SWAP combo B!


Only second garment in and once again a possible change of plans.


SWAP will have to be put on hold for a week or two while I go on safari for Jungle January. Actually, my contribution for 2016 is heralding from the frozen heights of the Himalayas rather than the heat of the savannah ….


As always I’m in two minds about wearing animal printed fabric. This is the 5th year of me joining in and every year so far my efforts are inside, under or otherwise somewhat discreet. This year I’ll either look devastatingly Parisian or else a very poor imitation of Cruella de Ville.

101 Dalmations - Live Action Remake.Copyright: Disney.

101 Dalmatians – Live Action Remake. Copyright: Disney.

Just for fun – spot the snow leopard





44 thoughts on “SWAP A1 (again) & B2

  1. …… And it’s a YES from me ! A truly brilliant solution for your pink fleece jacket. Love the trousers too !

  2. BRAVO! (Insert much clapping) You, my dear, are a genius 🙂

  3. You are a very talented sewist! Deb 🙂

  4. No way is there a snow leopard in there!

    Actually I’ve found it but I had to rest my eyes and go back a second time!!

    The belt loops are a nice idea; they certainly don’t look like elasticated trousers in any of the photos. And while it’s another jacket shape that suit you, I’m still not sure that it works in pink fleece. I’m just anti-fleece I guess. Maybe you’ve raised the bar too high with your VW dress so that I’m left with great expectations.

  5. I had not commented but wow, that jacket is a knockout and makes its original version look so sad! Well-done. And love the trousers – fabric is wonderful.

  6. Brilliant! Much more flattering, and very smart with the trousers.

  7. Wow. Jackpot. That fleece jacket is a flattering workhorse now.

    Since you seem to be able to make things in about, oh, 2 seconds, please make another of the cardigan length ones, too. The pink was going to be so cozy.

    BTW, following your success, I looked for fuchsia fleece at my fabric sources and couldn’t find anything remotely as attractive as yours. Will keep looking. The concept lives on my to-do list.

    • And still cosy and comfortable to wear. I made a blue fleece jacket for one of the other SWAPs which was lined, this one just is….in fact I didn’t want to take it off after these photos were shot. Thanks Sankati – I paid attention to your previous comment.

  8. A masterful transformation! And the trousers look so luxe. A great combo. I think the all-grey will be fine. Some glowy earrings or a bit of scarf will seal the deal. You’re off to a great start!

  9. Much better imo. I love the whole outfit. Do you really need to change your plans at this stage?

    • It is much better isn’t Anne? The wonderful world of sewing…….. At this stage my SWAP plans are to sew a bunch of clothes and then pair them together! No plan at all really.

  10. What a beautiful outcome. So chic. Love the trousers with the black top. As someone above said, a knockout! Brava!

  11. Had to stop by to applaud your redone fleece jacket! And I can almost feel that wonderful trouser fabric, and they look so chic!

  12. I love the pants and you did a lovely job in reshaping that jacket. the pink suits you very well.

    At this stage in my life I do not need elasticized waists, but I bought a pair of pants (in Italy, no less) last year with elasticized bands on each side. The wool was such a lovely green that I couldn’t resist and I can hide the elasticized bits with a belt. The funny part is that as I was debating buying the pants, deterred by the elastic, the sly shop keeper informed me that “if the elastic isn’t needed it doesn’t labour.” Pretty much true. I like your belt loop option though, in case you want to expose the waist.

    • I hope I’m also still at the stage in my life that I do not need elasticated waists either S – LOL! However, I am smitten with the lack of haberdashery that is required to make them and of course the ease of just pulling them on. The lovely wool fabric does elevate them above tracksuit bottoms though. Maybe that’s the key – like your Italian green ones – choose a luxe fabric.

  13. Found the beautiful leopard. The new version of this jacket is wonderful! Still comfy and cozy … definitely bright and fun.

  14. I quite liked your first pink jacket but I absolutely love the remake. The grey trousers look very classy and you would never know they had an elastic waist. (I am getting to the stage where elastic waists are my friend, sadly). I can’t wait to see your Jungle January creation. I have stuck to the savannah this year and tried a Zebra print. Just need to take photos.

    • I liked the first one too Jean but when compared to this remake it did look more and more like a dressing gown.
      Zebra? We’ll both be in black and white then – can;t wait to see yours!

  15. Wow! I liked the original, but this new version is really classy! Nice work! Beautiful fabric for your trousers too!

    • Thanks Linda – I’ll probably get more wear of out of this jacket version than the dressing gown one. This pink goes with so many colours that I would never have thought possible.

  16. The shape of the pink jacket is miles better now and you have been very clever to do that through draping on the stand. Did you use shoulder pads. Like Sew2Pro I would prefer a “classier” fabric too (cashmere for the grey one will be wonderful), but I do think this is fine for wearing outside.

    I love the the Vogue 9162 – it’s really an interesting pattern and I think it will look good on you. Mixing greys is always a nice classic look.

    I would love to do your colours Ruth on your next trip to London (if you would find it helpful).

  17. I love you in colors 🙂 those pants are really nice…look great on you.

  18. I love the pants. Why is it that drawstring pants are “young”, and elastic waist pants are “old”?

    • Yeah Felicia – we should all just get over the elasticated waist thing and embrace them! Let’s make them ‘young’!

      • I totally agree. I also sometimes put belt loops on such a waist and wear a belt. And also, we can easily modify an elastic waist by also inserting a drawstring. Then, voila, we’re dressing “young”.

  19. Yes, so much better. I really like the shape that would be a really good basic work jacket. I feel the same about elastic trousers, something your nan would wear, but yours really don’t look like that. It’s the belt that makes the difference, though presumably you wouldn’t wear it with a long top not tucked in? X

  20. The re-jigged jacket is wonderful, and the colour really looks fabulous on you. I remember being slightly horrified by some elastic waisted trousers in a high end dress shop I used to do alterations for. They were made by a Japanese company, were expensive even by that shops standard, and sold like hot cakes. Enjoy your trousers.
    I found the snow leopard! (But only when I enlarged the picture)

  21. Ooh, I definitely love to see the combination of black top and grey trousers with your pink fleece coat! I always love to see winter coats with a splash of color to lighten up the dull and boring winter weather.

  22. Pink definitely suits you!! I love the remake of the jacket, but also want to say that the longer jacket wold be great in a linen.

  23. Well done. What a change. The short version looks so smart. And looks wonderful with the grey.

  24. Pingback: SWAP A2, A3 & A2 Again | corecouture

  25. Pingback: You Want Two Sleeves? | corecouture

Let's talk.....

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s