Finished Project: Mid 1930’s Plaid Coat

Finally, a finished project! And I’m actually posting it on the blog!

This project began in 2019, with beautiful fabric I purchased from The Modern Mantua Maker. The fabric told me it wanted to be a 1930s “Swagger Coat”, so I was happy to oblige.

For the pattern, I used this vintage pattern from around late 1935-early 1936. This pattern had been in my stash for some time, and it was the perfect time to use it! For this project I cut one size up- a 36″ bust instead of a 34″ bust. I simply added 1/2″ at the underarm edges. I’m now around a 38″ bust, but it still fits!

Like with all plaids, cutting it took absolute ages. Let me tell you, aligning the sleeves and body to match on a coat cut like this from a big plaid took absolutely ages. I also cut the hymo for the coat facings and collar at this time, and I cut the lining from two different but similar off white silk remnants I had in my stash.

I decided I wanted both the patch pockets and the back yoke to be on the bias. This was also a matching choice, as no plaid to match on the back yoke meant it was easier to apply and line up so it looked coherent. To prevent stretching, I flat lined the bias cut yoke onto a cotton yoke on the straight of grain. Then I constructed it as if it was one piece.

I even pad stitched the collar and prepped it for the top collar, before putting it away.

And then… a pandemic happened. So I put it away. Until… the last week of 2022, when I was looking for a project I could “quickly finish up” (famous last words).

It took me a couple weeks to get all work done, including bound buttonholes, applying the collar and facings, applying and hand sewing the wigan to the hem and sleeve hems, and lining it, but it’s now my first completed project of 2023!

I am still awaiting a matching hat in the mail, and I may need to actually make a dress to go under it, but I’m happy it’s finished!

The front has quite 1960s vibes, which, I admit, does bother me a little, but it’s kind of like a mullet… mod in the front, deco in the back.

I think the wigan (it’s like a bias cut tape interfacing that’s stiff… a little like crinoline) really does help the coat hem to have some body.

The pockets are lined with the same silk that was used in the body.

The buttonholes are bound with the larger black square in the pattern. Luckily, when applied on the bias, they were *just* long enough to make the buttonholes. The vintage buttons are from the stash.

The fabric is quite loosely woven, which made it extra challenging to work with. It kept snagging and fraying, especially when I did the buttonholes or tried to clip in my corners. But, in the end, it worked out!

And here’s a peek at the lining.

That’s it! Hurrah for a big project finished! I always forget just how long these tailoring type projects can take- even if it’s a loosely cut coat!

I’ll try to take pictures of it actually on me once I get my sporty little hat.


1 Comment on Finished Project: Mid 1930’s Plaid Coat

  1. Nicole
    January 23, 2023 at 6:56 pm (1 year ago)

    It’s so beautiful! It’s so satisfying to finish a project that’s been sitting for a while.
    And I agree with you on cutting plaid- it’s the worst. I recently made a skirt and made a fatal measuring error on the waistband that I was unable to fix, so the pattern is slightly off. Sigh….

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