FALL COATIGAN [DIY]

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Saturday, August 22, 2015

                   


Cool breezes and majestic colored leaves. Warm apple pies and pumpkin spice lattes. Autumn is by far one of my favorite times in the year. It gives you an excuse to wear long boots, while it's still sunny outside. Don't get wrong, kimonos and summer maxis are still on my go to fashion list. But there is just something so effortless about boots and long coats during fall, that I can't go without.

Now, that your mind is lingering towards the fall season, lets talk about this long coatigan I made the other day. I'm not sure if I am just really late in this fashion trend but I didn't know what a 'coatigan' was until after I made this (lol!). I'll define it for all the people out there like me, who have a tough time keeping up with trends. So, a coatigan is basically a long or mid-length coat that is lightweight, but still keeps you warm and cozy. 

I purchased this fabric a couple of months ago and it was love at first sight. Even though, it took me some time to think about what to make of it. This tribal print fabric is a mix between a soft wool and a stretch knit. It gives you the right about of warmth without overheating your body. The process of making this coatigan was surprisingly quite simple, seeing it was my first time making a freaking semi-coat. It took me about four hours to make, but I split it between a two day period. 

I highly recommend trying this out yourself! It makes any basic outfit look put together & kind of high end. 

Follow the steps below:

Time: about 4 hours
Level: Intermediate 


[Materials]
  • 3 yds. of medium-weight fabric (I used stretch wool.)
  • Buttons (optional)
  • Matching Thread
  • Scissors / Measuring Tape
  • Sewing Machine 
  • Misc: seam ripper 


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[Process]

1.) One trick every beginner should know is to use clothes you already own as a pattern to trace on your fabric. For this project, I used a old maxi cardigan as my pattern and traced it for my back, front, and sleeve pieces. I also added an inch for ease and half of an inch for seam allowance. 

2.) Now, using your clothes as a pattern, you should have a total of three pieces cut: back, and two front pieces. Then sew the two front pieces to the back piece. Making sure your keep the right sides together, in my case it was the side with the print.



3.) To add a more professional look to the garment. I decided to make an inch and a half boarder and neck collar using some of the left over fabric. In order to do this, you need to cut three rectangular three-inch pieces. The first one is for the neckline, so measure your neckline on the garment. Mine was about 13-inches. Next, measure the side of the non-sewn front piece and cut two rectangular pieces. Mine was about 50-inches. 
              ---> Now, working with one piece at a time. Fold the rectangular piece in half (press it if you want now or later). Then sew it (right sides together) to the corresponding side.


4.) Your almost finished! Hang in there. Time to add some sleeves! Its a love and hate relationship when it comes to adding sleeves. It's not terribly difficult, but it may take a few tries before you get the right fit. Again, utilize what you got and use a top with sleeves from your closet to trace over the fabric. And don't for get to add seam allowance (1/2-inch). Then, sew 'em all together by tucking in the sleeve (right side) into the arm whole of the garment (on the wrong side) and sew all around. I know this probably sounds complicated, but believe me you will master this skill in no time!

5.) This is an optional step. Like most people, taking a purse everywhere can be a drag, so pockets for a girl can be a life-saver. To add pockets you can use your hand to trace an oval shape with a straight edge. What I did was look at an online pattern (just google pocket patten) and I sort-of eye balled it to the size I wanted. The exact measurements are shown below. You need 4 pieces. Sewing it can be a bit complicated so follow closely. 
             ---> Decide where you want the pockets to be and open the seam using your seam ripper. 
             ---> Get one of the 4 pieces and sew it to one side of the open seam, then get another piece                  and sew it to the opposite side to the first one. 
             ---> Then, close the seam, by starting to sew from a few inches from where you opened the                  seam and sew all around the two pockets to finish the one pocket.
             ---> Repeat for the other pocket. 


6.) HEM! Yup, its that time again. This is when your piece of work will come together. For my coatigan, I hemmed the end of the sleeves and the bottom. A useful tip when it comes to hemming is to do a double-fold. Meaning, you fold it 1/2-inch and then another 1/2-inch because it gives you a professional finish and it makes it a lot easier to sew. 

You made a freaking coat! Well... a 'coatigan'.

I hope this DIY tutorial helped you build your fall wardrobe. 
If you have any questions/comments, don't hesitate to ask. 

Comment below or email me: hamdikeynan@gmail.com 


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