Ready for the Rain

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Have you heard about the big Compagnie M sewing contest? It`s all about the Louisa and Lewis Coat. Of course, I couldn`t leave out such a friendly contest. Here is my entry. After making a simple Louisa Coat version for the blogtour, I felt like pattern-hacking could be fun. And i went all the way from a wool coat to a functional rain jacket. I never ever thought i could make something like that, when i first started to sew. I`m not a sewer who fears a lot. But this seemed to be a big deal. Now it`s clear, there is no reason to become scared of such a project. It behaves like a woven fabric and doesn`t shift. And the best of all, you don`t have to iron. Because you would destroy the fabric. You just understitch or topstitch the seams and get a nice and crisp finish.

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My tips for sewing Goretex

  • Use a microtex needle
  • Understitch or topstitch seams
  • Don`t use your iron
  • Use a seam sealer (I used seamtape) to make seams waterproof
  • Don`t make mistakes, your needle will leave holes in the fabric and weaken it.
  • No pins for the same reason

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I made a whole bunch of changes to the pattern. Let`s start on top. I added a little cape to the hood to protect her face from the rain. Then, I drew a standing collar, that she can close her jacket over her neck. Because I didn`t want the zipper to scratch her chin i needed a zipper guard. I provided a drawstring on the waist and an elastic for the hood. I drew deep gusseted pockets in the form of the typical Louisa Pocket. There is a little inside pocket for small treasure and last but not least a size-adjustable velcro for the sleeve.

All you need for a nice weatherproof rain jacket.

Have a look at the details.

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As it is not so easy, to find good quality outdoor fabrics (Your recommendations are very welcome!) I reused a good but not often worn Jacket from her grandmother. I decided to ask around for an unloved rain jacket, I could use to make a new one out of it. I was sure someone had one waiting in a cupboard. But I was so delighted when she arrived with this purple jacket. It`s probably exactly the color my little girl wished for. It was a heavy task to take the whole jacket apart and place the new pattern pieces on it. There isn`t much left of the original jacket. I reused everything. Main fabric, lining, elastic, velcro and even the shortened zipper. So satisfying! Time consuming yes, but lots of fun. And i boast when i look at the finished project!

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The only difficulties I faced where sewing on gusseted pockets without using pins and to apply the sealtape. That was kind of frustrating. This tape caused all those pucker you can see, for example, under the pockets. So annoying for a little perfectionist like me. But I had to live with it. Just couldn`t do better. I`ll try an other brand next time. It`s a great coat, though. At least my little girl is more than happy about it.

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Pattern: Hacked Louisa Coat by Compagnie M

Fabric: Upcycled old outdoor jacket, and some Aime come Marie Diamants for the hood lining.

Louisa Coat

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I always fall in Love with the style lines of a Compagnie M Pattern! Those nicely curved seamlines, which allow you to get creative and make it your own. I can remember Marte telling me once, that she use to draw her curved seams free hand, I guess that`s the secret behind. Her patterns have in common that they carries Martes very own thumbprint. The lines play with the shape, split up and meet again in a very unique way.

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Her latest pattern, the Louisa Coat, was such a pleasure to sew! I must say, that I love sewing Coats. It`s a project you can put your heart and soul in. But your little one will wear it for a whole season. Every single day. It will always be the most visible garment. So yes, it`s totally worth to spent the time and make it unique. The Louisa Coat comes with very clear instructions how to sew a Coat. And that includes some handsewing!

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Last year I drafted a Coat myself. That was a lot of work and I`m really glad Marte came up with the perfect pattern this year. Without all the drafting, it was kind of fast sewing this year. Kind of. I never cut corners or just rush through projects, i like to do it as good as i can. A wool coat without fabric bound buttonholes? For me, no way. It`s such a nice finish and i enjoy doing them, though.

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I bought the wool 3 weeks ago in Italy. In a local fabric shop. When I entered the store i was surrounded by fabricbolts. They piled up left and right. Just leaving a small path to the cash desk. All the beautiful old wooden shelfs that went up until the ceiling where empty. In front of the desk there was an old men sitting. He looked quite surprised, like he wasn`t expecting costumers. I guess he was not able to get up to the shelves anymore and so he just started to pile his bolts where he could reach them. He had the most beautiful wools and linens and… oh it was kind of sad. I`m a bit a messy person myself, but i really felt the urge to clear up that mess. The wool is gorgeous it`s soft and has a nice drape a beautiful color. i knew my girl would love it right away. She does, even if she declared (a week ago) that pink isn`t her favorite color anymore. It`s violet now (can it get any worser?).

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When she first saw her coat she wanted to wear it immediately. I got hugs and kisses. Needless to say, that I was melting away like ice in the sun. She`s just the sweetest, especially in her pink Louisa.

The buttons are vintage from my stash. I love the subtile contrast they add.

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The dress you spot here is a Maradress, also from Compagnie M. Yes it`s Liberty. But I wan`t say more. I`ll blog about that one soon.

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Speaking about, how much time I tend to spend on my handmade garments. Yes, the lining is machine-quilted to a warm fleece. That took me a whole evening. Just saying.

The fabric I used for the lining is a upcycled pillowcase and I had to add some glitter as well. The piping is self made, silver and shiny. Yes.

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The piping on the outside is self-made as well, from a nice thin gingham wool I bought together with the pink one. It helps to add the little something, so the coat doesn`t look like a cupcake, though.

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The doll buggy was her birthday gift from Mr. Fliegfederfrei and I this year. It`s a very old one we found at a thrift store. We restored it with lots of love. And it matches the colors of the  coat perfectly.

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Compagnie M has a discount code available for 2 weeks (till the 6th of November). The code LOUISACOAT10 gives a 10% reduction on the paper or PDF version of the pattern.

Compagnie M shop

Pattern: Louisa Coat by Compagnie M

Fabric: Wool, bought locally in Italy. Lining, upcycled. Buttons: Vintage