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Fitting the Heather Blazer


Young Asian female in a white linen Heather Blazer by the Friday Pattern Company, with her right hand in the front patch pocket, worn with grey jeans, white trainers and a Sagebrush Top

I attended The Classic Blazer workshop with Claire Tyler which came days after the Sienna Maker Jacket Course with Lynda Maynard ended and so I had a reference point with this in terms of sizing. I’d seen several reviews where sewers found sizing on the Heather Blazer on the large side and wish they had sized down by one or two sizes.


Cream Heather Blazer on a regular model and a plaid one on a plus sized model

When comparing it with the finished garment measurements on the Sienna, I found that they were very similar to that of the extra small size on the Heather, even though my measurements matched size medium more closely on the size chart. I decided to continue with extra small for my toile as I knew my Sienna Jacket had a good amount of ease already.


Young Asian female wearing a cream Sienna Maker Jacket

This post is all about my fitting process. You can read my review of the pattern here, and the Classic Blazer workshop with Claire Tyler here.




First toile

Here is my first toile made up in size XS without the sleeves.



Observations

The issues I could see were:


1. Gaping front neckline


Close up view of Heather Blazer toile with front neckline gaping

2. Gaping back armholes



3. Vertical drag lines on the back.


4. The back hem flares out


Adjustments

Here’s how I dealt with each issue.


1. Gaping front neckline

Front view of Heather Blazer toile with front neckline gaping pinned out on either side

I pinned out the excess at the front neckline which indicated I needed 2 centimetres removed from each side. Thankfully, I already found a good fix from Alexandra Morgan having had the same issue with my Sienna Maker Jacket and so I knew how to adjust this. I describe the process in my post here.



2, 3, 4. Gaping back armholes, drag lines on the back, back hem flares out


I felt that all three issues would be helped by a rounded back adjustment. Referencing the Palmer Pletsch book, they recommend a maximum of 1.5 cm here with any additional adjustment being carried out as a lower rounded back adjustment. I just did the 1.5 cm at the high back initially, pinning in some extra fabric. When slashing across for the high rounded back I did this along the seam line, but then realised this would cut across the shoulder seam. All the back adjustments I have seen have always cut across the arm hole and so I lowered this on the pattern piece.


Close up of the back of the Heather Blazer toile showing upper rounded back adjustment pinned with extra fabric

This improved the back armhole gaping and the drag lines a little.



I felt more room was needed for the back, so I decided to slash across for a lower rounded back adjustment of 1 cm.



Observations

The gaping armholes were reduced further, the back vertical draglines were a little reduced, and the back flared out a touch less. Here are the views against the original toile.



I transferred the back adjustments to the pattern, and modified the front piece to distribute the neckline excess into the surrounding seams. Here are my adjusted front and back pattern pieces.



Second toile

I then made a new toile with the sleeves on, with reduced length to save on fabric.


Observations

This looked better but I felt the rounded back adjustments protruded a little too much on the centre back seam. The sleeves were also tight from the elbow downwards, particularly if bending my arm. This was as far as I managed to get before the workshop and so I took it with me to discuss with Claire Tyler.


Further adjustments at the workshop

Claire recommended the following:

  1. Keep the increased length of the rounded back adjustment but flatten the curve

  2. Grade one size up on the sleeve pieces from the elbow downward

  3. We looked at the length of the blazer and decided to shorten it by 6 cm

She reminded me that all the corresponding lining pieces would also need to be adjusted, as well as the collar pieces as I had reduced the front neckline. It was then that I realised I missed this crucial step on my Sienna Jacket collar which may have contributed to the fit of it which I struggled with.


I took an even tuck out of the collar pieces where the vertical line of washi tape is.


Upper and Under collar pattern pieces for the Heather Blazer showing a tuck folded out to match the reduced neckline

Adjustments made during construction

I proceeded to construct the blazer but didn't manage to sew on the sleeves during the workshop. Once I got to the sleeves, I found they looked odd, with some excess fabric causing loose folds. I took off the wadding around the armhole which seemed to exaggerate it but found there was still an odd fold around the left shoulder in particular.


The back left armhole of the Heather Blazer showing excess fabric

It looked better if I pulled the jacket forward which made sense to me because I often find garments are too wide in the back for me, so I fiddled with the back part of the sleeve cap to reduce the volume of fabric here. I unpicked this section and made the seam allowance wider on the sleeve but kept it the same on the jacket back

Annotated view of the back armhole of the Heather Blazer with an increased seam allowance on the sleeve head to reduce excess fabric

.

This seemed to work and gave a slightly smoother sleeve cap.


After view of the left back armhole of the Heather Blazer after increasing the seam allowance to reduce excess fabric

The right side seemed OK so I left it as is. Here is the finished jacket. There is a slight flare at the front with the wind exaggerating this, and may be due to how I sewed in the lining.




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I'm Kay, and welcome to my blog where I share tales of my sewing journey, complete with mishaps, mistakes and solutions to help make your journey a smoother one.

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