July 22, 2010

my great scrap coat challenge

My friend, Alex, roped me into participating in this sewing contest with her. I'm pretty excited about it, but I must admit that I am equally daunted by the task. Sewing clothing is definitely not my strong suit (ha!).

(The Challenge: Pick up a kit of scrap fabrics from Sew Up Seattle headquarters, make a coat, show up at the Greenwood Seafair Parade on July 28 wearing your coat, and strut your stuff.)

Alex even picked up a kit for me from Sew Up Seattle - check out the scraps I was given in which to create a coat in about 3 weeks:

Yikes! I was at a loss when I saw the materials I had to work with, but I was immediately certain that this would definitely be a *scrap* coat.

So, my only successful experiences sewing clothing have been Halloween costume related. Sewing a Halloween costume is awesome because it never really has to fit perfectly, you know - after all, it is only a costume! I decided that I needed some serious help with this project. I found this Burda pattern for a simple boys' hooded zipper coat, and an idea sprung into my mind. I would make a coat for Charlie, and he would wear it in the Greenwood Seafair Parade (in which all Scrap Challenge coats are displayed). What fun it would be for him to be in a parade! Plus, Charlie could grow into this coat if (when) I sew it the wrong size.

So then I got started. The biggest problem is that all of my scrap pieces were truly scraps; I couldn't make even the vest portion of the coat out of all the same material. So the back features this ridiculous fleece houndstooth (is that what that pattern is called?). The hood and sleeves are made from the striped jersey material. The hood came out quite nice, I do think.

Whoa. The front is a little bit too wacky, though. I used the pinstripe suiting for the front, then attached some of the fleece as pockets. They are totally ugly. I took this photo, then ripped them right off! I plan to replace the pockets with the soft grey velveteen fabric pictured in the photo of my fabric kit.

So, after I fix the pockets, I just need to hem the bottom and sleeves, tidy up the seams inside (maybe with some bias tape), and add the zipper.

But, wait! Sew Up Seattle instructs participants in their challenge directions:

Feel free to add scraps and embellishments from your own stash, but please use the kit for most of your creation. We know that's a challenge, but this IS a challenge!

So, what about the gold satin and shimmery blue material? Well, I plan to use that to make a superhero cape to attach (with funky buttons that were included with the kit) to the back of the coat. I'm going for a Clark-Kent-Showing-His-Superman look (basically, a costume).

Wish me luck. And, yes, Alex... I ditched the shoulder pads. Don't tell.


  1. oh, how fun! i'm not sure why, but for some reason i'm seeing a bit of a loose correlation between your challenge and this sweet knockoff:

    I can't wait to see what you design - you must show the finished result here!

  2. For a "scrap" coat that rocks! Good job for a woman who claims not to sew clothing!

  3. Naturally! Of course, your coat would include a cape! Very creative Shelly. Can't wait to see the finished piece.

  4. Wow, I didn't quite really how crazy your kit was! And here's me thinking that I was doing you a favor by keeping the green/blue/floral kit and giving you this one!