Monday, February 16, 2009

Presenting Butterick 5187 - The Anna Sui Jacket

I am calling this 'The Anna Sui Jacket' which is part of the "Lisa Outfit" because of the fabric. The fabric is the jump off point in this jacket and it's provided all of the adventure and drama in getting the jacket completed. If you've been reading along, you know that this fabric started as a thin wool gauzy type of fabric that I washed & dried and ended up with a felted piece of fabric. This manipulated piece is the start of the journey...

So let's talk some stats:

Butterick 5187 is an unlined, very loose-fitting jacket that has front and back gathered or pleated to a yoke. The yoke can extend to ties, have a one button closing, a snap closing or collar with several button closing.

I made View C in a size 24 straight out of the pattern envelope. The only change I made to the pattern pieces was to lengthen the jacket front and back by three inches.

8 - yes 8 yards of the Anna Sui fabric felted
1/2 yard of black lining

5 yards of black satin bias binding
1 Size 10 black sew on snap
1 2" floral button from M&J Trimmings

Construction Changes:
I did follow the instructions sheets - well pretty much - since this was the first time working with this pattern.

► I did have some issues cutting out the pieces because the felted material had a border print that I wanted to use and the edges of the fabric felted with a ripply texture. To resolve the problem, I cut the pattern pieces out with some allowance around them. I steam pressed the cut out piece and repinned the pattern piece to the fabric. Then I recut the pattern piece. This solved most of the ripply, too wide pattern piece issues.

► The pattern calls for interfacing. I omitted this since I wanted a softer, sweatery type jacket and thought that even a light fusible interfacing might change the fabric's hand.

► The facing pieces were cut from lining fabric to eliminate bulk in the jacket yoke fronts and backs.

► The sleeves were sewn in using a flat insertion instead of the normal "in the round" method. Again the fabric is a little bulky and I wasn't sure that I could get a clean insertion so using the flat method insured that there were no puckers, gathers or other issues with sewing the sleeves into the jacket.

► The instructions tell you to baste the facings to the yoke fronts and backs and then insert the sleeves. Since I did not use this method, I ended up machine stitching these pieces down after the sleeves were inserted. I hand stitched the front and back yoke facings to the fashion fabric for a clean finish inside the jacket. I also omitted all of the edge stitching the instruction sheets tell you to do. I used a lot of steam and my clapper to get the lining and jacket fabrics to lay flat instead.

► I added black satin bias binding to the sleeve hems, finishing them off using a Hong Kong application. This was done prior to sewing the sleeves closed, so I tucked the additional bias binding underneath the seam and took a few stitches to clean finish the ends.

► The hem was also bound with the black satin bias binding for two reasons. To give the hem a little weight. I wanted to make the jacket back swing a little, and to give a more stable edge to add a hand stitched hem.

► Since the fabric was felted, I did not finish the edges of the fabric...knowing that the edges wouldn't ravel.
Some final thoughts on this jacket:

I was able to make the felted fabric work and achieve the sweatery look that I was aiming for. And I did manage to make the border print work in the jacket. Even though the border is primarily featured on the back yoke and the hemline of the jacket.

The sleeves did end up a little lighter than the rest of the jacket but since it is an artsy type of jacket...I am going to call it a design feature. I mean after the issue of not having enough fabric, I was making this work!

Finally, I will make this jacket again in a more "Corporate Chic" type fabric.

I am now working on the LBD dress that accompanies this more later!


  1. Thank you Carolyn for persisting! And thank you Lisa, for responding! What a beautiful jacket! And a beautiful story that made it! Absolutely gorgeous!

  2. Great jacket and very cool fabric!

  3. Wow, you used the fabric beautifully. Love the button, too. It's just perfect!

  4. Love how the fabric turned out! Great jacket!

  5. It came out so great. After all your preparation my fingers were crossed for you. I would like to see a pic of you wearing it.

  6. Now that looks like a stylish yet comfy jacket. Can't wait to see it with the dress.

  7. I'm so glad you were able to work through. It looks fabulous. g

  8. Fabulous jacket and great use of the fabric.

  9. I love how this turned out! What I love about your sewing is that you are willing to take a lot of risks--like the felting of this fabric--and "make it work" even when all seems hopeless.

    Well done!

  10. Very pretty - the colors and style are so feminine. I love the clever use of the border-type ribbon print to accent the back yoke and hem.

  11. Did you have doubts about how this project would end? It's really a great little jacket and a great use of the fabric.

  12. Very pretty and like how you made use of the border.

  13. Such a pretty jacket. Great job.

  14. Wow! That was quite an adventure. It turned out really nice, though.

  15. Nice work! And it will look so good with a black dress :))

  16. I'm so happy to see everything turned out well :D

  17. It really did turn out so nice! You know, from the pic's your showed it sure doesn't look like the sleeve's are lighter! Yep, I'd be telling everyone it was supposed to be that way...
    Love it! So.... are you wearing it to work this week? Can't wait to see the entire outfit!

  18. I love how the jacket turned out and I'm happy that you were able to get more of the same fabric and finish up the jacket so beautifully!

  19. Fab jacket. And it looks so much more stylish than the pattern drawing.

  20. Well, ever since you posted this I have been thinking about the fabric - I too have 5 yards of it. I too expected it to be drapier. I keep pulling it out and petting it, thinking about how pretty yours is felted. I think I would have done the deed last night except that I have a front-loader which is terrible for felting! I'm about 95% sure that I am going to take it to a friend's house and felt it - it's just so much prettier as a jacket than it would be as a dress.

  21. Hi Carolyn,

    Can you please tell me about your dressform. I will like to have one but they are so expensive, not in my budget right now. Can you give me some guide in this matter? Thanks


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