I live in Atlantic Canada, and it gets super cold and snowy here. A proper winter coat (or two or three) is key to survival. I have a big multi-layer water proof wind proof snow proof movement proof coat that I use for REALLY cold days (-30 and below) but for just normal cold days I generally wear my wool coat.
Oh how uninspiring this coat is. I got it at the Gap maybe 3 years ago for maybe 40$, which is NOTHING for a winter coat, but I guess you get what you pay for…
It is outstandingly boring and not very flattering. It has always been a bit big on me (not generally a bad thing for a winter coat because that allows you to layer under it) but the main problem is the utter lack of any sort of tailoring/shaping. Believe it or not, I have a waist but damned if you can see it when I’m wearing this coat!!!
At the end of last winter this coat finally gave up the ghost. The lining had been in tatters for a while, and the pockets had holes and I had to reattach most of the buttons at one time or another, but when the entire shoulder seam split open I declared it dead. “FINALLY!” I thought to myself, because I am much too cheap to buy a new winter coat unless it is truly necessary. Also, plus size winter coats are just… ugly. And unflattering. I’m sorry, but no plus size woman wants to wear big giant shapeless puffy coats with tacky faux fur lined hoods, and yet that seems to be the majority of what stores offer.
Since I’m getting into sewing my own clothes, my genius plan was to make my own winter coat. This coat specifically (McCall’s M6800). I had a brilliant plan to make the version with the hi-low bottom and have a truly fabulous lining that would show, making the coat spectacular in its eye-catching-ness and general beauty. But I’m cautious. Wool coat material is pretty expensive and I didn’t want to spend the money only to have it turn out awful, so I asked my sew talented mother if I was being nuts to think this was a good idea.
Long story short, yes, my mother thought I was nuts.
Heartbroken doesn’t quite capture my sadness, but I trust my mother’s judgement on this. I’m sure in time it will be a task I could take on, but maybe not yet.
So what to do about a winter coat! I refuse to be saddled with an ugly coat all winter (again), but I also hate spending money needlessly, so I have come up with the following solution:
I am going to fix my old coat. I’m going to take it all apart, do a bit of tailoring to bring in the waist a bit to give me some shape, I’m going to remove the annoying button tabs on the shoulders that my purse gets stuck on every single time, and I’m going to re-line it. I got the lining fabric today, and it is FAAAAAAAAAAAABULOUS. Or ugly. Can’t decide, but either way I love it. It is bright purple with red blood splatters! Shockingly, it was in the clearance section of my local Fabricville, but it is appropriately slippery for a lining, and just stupid enough of a pattern to crack me up and make this whole endeavor a lot more appealing. Plus, only 6$.
The way I see it, if I screw this project up the worst I am out is 6$ and some time because if I don’t fix the coat I’ll have to buy a new one regardless, right?
This weekend is going to be fairly sew-heavy it seems. I want to at least get a start on my coat, but I also have to sew a shirt dress for myself. It is a test run before my “Sew Spectacular” weekend with my cousin next weekend where we’re both going to sew up a storm.