This is a blog dedicated to documenting sewing self drafted and indie sewing patterns, consuming less, being better to people and the earth, creative exploration, and my life and times in Rochester, NY.

Welcome to #coatgate: Bamboo Coat Prep

Welcome to #coatgate: Bamboo Coat Prep

Hello and welcome to COATGATE. 

I’ve become a little coat obsessed over here. Self care is kind of weird; sometimes I feel like busting out as many simple patterns as possible to feel super productive, and sometimes I feel like tacking one big project and carefully planning each step so you have maximum reward. Right now i’m stuck in the later as I work towards making my winter coat. 

If you don’t live in a place where the word “SNOWPOCALYPSE” has been used to describe your winter, I could understand why you would think of a coat as a regular old project. For residents of Rochester, NY and other arctic tundras, we know that wanter warming apparel is no fucking joke. This is where I have to admit: I’m a terrible weather dresser. I am ALWAYS dressed  for fashion not function, and even when i’m scrubbing on a day off I’m cold when I go outside. I’ve always bought fashion coats instead of those ugly warm ones I know will keep my giblets warm even in the worst rochester winter. I guess when I think about it, I’ve never had the kind of money to drop on the warm AND stylish coat of my dreams. 

Enter coatgate. I’ve been fantasizing about making a winter coat for this season all year. So now that i’m starting the process, I’m milking every step of the way. Perfect fit, which means multiple muslins. If you know me at all, you’ll know you’re lucky to get one muslin out of me, let alone multiple. I’ve ordered swatches instead of winging it, and I have big plans for this bad boy.


As you can see by this coat mockup, i’m literally obsessed. After ordering swatches of many different colors and thicknesses of wool coating from mood, I settled on this cranberry color. To be totally frank, I was looking for a bright lipstick red for this coat. I had an elaborate fantasy. But mood was out of bright red so I was willing to settle for a cranberry/oxblood color, which to be honest will probably be a smarter option for me considering how apt I am for spilling coffee on myself. I really loved the white and grey gingham wool coating I swatched, but I had a grey fashion coat I just absolutely demolished with coffee and weird stains.

Photo Nov 28, 7 12 33 PM.jpg

I’m absolutely obsessed with the Bamboo coat pattern from Waffle Patterns. I think it’s the perfectly versatile boxy coat pattern I’ve looked for my entire life. I was unsure if I should do an FBA right out of the box considering this coat already has a bust dart, but I decided for my first muslin to just cut and see. 

It turns out that i’ll definitely be needing that FBA. The largest size of this coat was tight around my chest but DEFINITELY too tight around my hips, which I didn’t expect. I figure that an FBA will open that baby up and make it more of the sleek boxy coat I’m looking for. 

Weirdly, the sleeves fit well. The length is surprisingly long for a Japanese pattern, but I still think i’ll lengthen them an inch to really live that tall girl dream. 

So after my first muslin, here’s my list of hacks for the next version:

-1.5” Full Bust Adjustment

-1” Sleeve Lengthen

I've done a tissue fitting on the second draft of the pattern and cut into my wool, so cross your fingers for me. I'd love if you left me some coat making tips in the comments if you have any!


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Reflecting on 2017

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