Given the choice of chocolate or vanilla I will always go for the chocolate but when I saw this deliciously sweet boucle, aptly named French Vanilla (*now sold out) , I knew I had to take a detour.
Knowing that I wanted to try a more traditional French jacket pattern this time I choose Vogue 7975.
The Academy Awards were approaching and everywhere I looked I saw Cate Blanchett’s Chanel cardigan for Blue Jasmine.
Then it hit me! Why not try my hand at a black blanket stitch for my trim? I bought two skeins of Debbie Bliss merino wool, one each of cream and black.
The blanket stitch is easy. Making a uniform stitch in length and spacing is NOT easy. I needed a template of some sort to stitch by and so (and this tip is totally not couture) I made a line of zigzag stitches by machine with a thread a little darker than my boucle. Using the peaks and valleys made the uniformity of stitches so much easier.
Upon magnification of the pictures of Cate’s jacket I could tell that there was a cream colored “finishing stitch” at the end of what I call the legs. I put on my needlepoint hat, grabbed a big needle and the cream Debbie Bliss and did a Split Gobelin stitch along the outer edge of the blanket stitching.
I recently purchased Claire Shaeffer’s new release of “The Couture Cardigan Jacket: Sewing Secrets from a Chanel Collector”. She mentions that one of the hallmarks of a true couture French jacket is the sag of the pockets since they have no interfacing. Some even cut the top of the pocket with a curve to achieve this look. Mine are curving a little on their own!
I didn’t make any pattern alterations except the neckline as noted above, something I regret a bit now. I was pleasantly surprised with the fit of this jacket since many I’ve seen from this pattern seam boxy, but it has nice shaping at the waist.
I’m very pleased with my second French jacket but I don’t believe I will tackle such time consuming trim on the next one I make.
Dorcas, this is another beautiful Chanel styled jacket in your ever-growing collection (see her 1st jacket here). You can keep up with Dorcas’s journey into couture on her blog LoneStarCuture.blogspot.com!
*This fabric is currently sold out-if you are interested in special ordering this fabric you can contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org