Lori Jacket: the Couture-ish Version

I like my Lori Jacket so much that I decided to make another one. This one is made from a really cool remnant of bouclĂ© that I picked up in New York when I was there in December. This fabric ravels dreadfully. You should see the floor of my sewing room! I realized the standard StyleArc 3/8″ seams were not going to cut it, so I decided to use some couture techniques that I learned from Susan Khalje. I didn’t go full-out couture on this, but I used enough to deem it couture-ish.

I discovered that I have two copies of this pattern (whoops!), so I didn’t have to worry about damaging the pattern. I trimmed the pattern pieces down to the stitching line and thread-traced them on my fabric. As a side note, my friend Phyllis came up to the studio while I was doing this and helped me, cutting the amount of time to thread trace in half. Thanks, Phyllis! I then cut the pieces out, giving myself one-inch seam allowances. Given how badly this fabric frays, I am really glad I did. If you work with a really ravelly fabric like this, you’re far better off cutting wide SA. You can trim them back after you sew the seams, but it will help keep your sanity intact, and keep your project from becoming a wadder.

The thread color is so you can see it clearly. For the majority of the seams I used matching gray thread.

After sewing the seams by machine, I stitched the seam allowances down by hand. There are a lot of seams in this pattern, so that took the bulk of the time. As you can see from the picture, I used my favored organza stay method to reinforce the back corner seam. This fabric requires it. Trying to use the method in the StyleArc instructions would be courting disaster in this case.

I didn’t use any trim on the shoulder yokes this time. Instead I went for the clean finish.

In addition to the shoulder pads, I used sleeve heads to support the sleeve. I didn’t take any pictures in process, but this is the sleeve head I used. This was a gift from my friend Rosie, who brought it back from Paris. OMG – this is THE. BEST. Thank you Rosie! I need to find a stateside supplier of this.

This works beautifully!

Because this fabric is rather bulky, I tacked the facings to the outer garment at the shoulders, the center back and the sleeve openings. That keeps them all in place and laying nice and flat.

Even with the additional time and care that I spent on the seams, this jacket went together quite readily. This fabric has enough body that I decided to forego block fusing interfacing to all the pieces, as the pattern recommends. The only parts of the pattern that I interfaced were the center front bands, to give support to my closure. This time, instead of a zipper closure, I used a decorative hook/eye tape that I bought at Pacific Trim about 9 years ago. It’s been patiently waiting for the right project to come along and this was it! I thought about tucking the scalloped edges under and using the selvage of the fabric as a transition piece, but when I laid the pieces out, it was too bulky, so I went with just the tape.

Closeup of the tape so you can see the lace.

I lined it with a stretch lining from Gorgeous Fabrics (of course!). That particular fabric is sold out, but there are Lots of Others Here.

A look at the inside

I love the way this turned out! This jacket is really nice and warm. It’s dressy enough to pair with a black pencil skirt or trousers, but I’ll probably wear it with jeans and boots. I really love the closure. I did all the hand-sewing while parked in front of the TV watching NFL playoffs (go Pats!) and Downton Abbey (go Mr. and Mrs. Carson!).

Here are some pictures on Shelley:


and Back. Without the trim the design lines disappear in this fabric.

Oh, and remember at the beginning I said you should see the floor of my sewing room? Here it is.

And this is after I did a sweep halfway through!

Once again, I recommend this pattern. I would definitely do it again, though I think I’ll give it a rest for a while. Next on my list is a McCalls mock-wrap dress that has been sitting on my sewing machine table for a couple of weeks.

Happy sewing!

12 thoughts on “Lori Jacket: the Couture-ish Version”

  1. Tina says:

    Absolutely stunning!!!!

  2. Lisa says:

    So pretty!

  3. Carolyn says:

    Your first one was pretty but this one is just awesome! Love, love, love this!

  4. Lynley Povey says:

    Beautiful. Thanks for the construction tips. That sleeve head stuff is great, too.

  5. Dee says:

    This is beautiful, I like it a lot more than the 1st version. Some very useful info about the pattern in both blog entries.

  6. Rhoda K says:


  7. Nakisha says:

    WOW! That’s beautiful! And I love the closures!!!!

  8. LNJ says:

    Beautiful pieces like this are the reason I sew — thank you for your examples!

  9. Kathleen says:

    What a lovely jacket! That hook and eye tape is the perfect choice

  10. Shams says:

    Really beautiful, Ann! I’ll have to find out where Rosie found that sleeve head!

  11. Bunny says:

    Gorgeous and that tape is drool worthy!

    1. Gorgeous Fabrics says:

      Isn’t that tape gorgeous, Bunny? It came from Pacific Trim in NY. It’s backed with cotton twill tape, so it’s more substantial than it looks – which makes sense given the weight of the hooks and eyes. The only downside is I do have to be a bit careful to avoid catching my left sleeve on the hooks. But that’s only a problem when it’s open. If I close it, or close it part way it’s fine.

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