Punk Poodle Coat

I absolutely love my Burda World of Fashion subscription, and generally go through the routine of getting really excited about seven or so things in the magazine, then get promptly overwhelmed and let it sit and “cure” for awhile so I can get my head around what I want to make. Eventually I make some stuff… But usually not the month it comes out.

When December’s issue came, there were a ton of patterns that I just loved. The one I didn’t really notice was that one that’s not even on the web site—the faux fur jacket that they show in three different wardrobe configurations.

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Josh noticed it—pointing out that it would be a fun one to make. We’d recently been to Fabric Depot and went through the side door where the faux fur is, so I think the fake stuff was on his mind.Anyway, my mom and I went over there a couple of days later and I helped her pick out some fabric for a couple of sewing projects she’s starting. She offered to get me the fake fur so I could make my coat. It was quite the decision—it came down to the choice between a blue and brown argyle and a psychedelic charcoal and magenta “poodle” fur. The scales were tipped in the favor of the poodle fur when I placed an emergency call to Josh, and he reminded me that a couple of years back when we still lived in New Mexico, I had my eye on a poodle fur jacket at REI (of all places—because nothing does with a kayak like a purple faux poodle fur jacket) for a long time, but couple never bring myself to spend the $100+ bucks on it.

This fabric is backed with a very heavy sweatshirt-type charcoal fleece, which means that combined with the very long fake fur, the stuff is pretty toasty.

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Which also means that it was a huge pain in the butt to sew. No, it was a colossal pain. Horrible really. Gathering a sleeve with heavy fake fur is not fun any way you shake it. It was also impossible to create the front welt pockets that were called for in the pattern—the fibers were just too dense, and it was going to end in tears, so I moved the pockets to the side seams. (Which I may have done anyway, just because for a coat, that’s where I prefer my pockets in coats.) The worst part was the collar, however. I had to sew through so many layers and the fibers kept getting tangled up in the sewing machine. Not fun. And while I used my Fabric Savvy book for reference, and trimmed the fur back at the seams, etc, at the collar I couldn’t or else the whole thing would look like crap. Anyway, I actually scared both Josh and my mom at the language I used when yelling at the sewing machine and my fabric when I was attaching the collar. I usually don’t let myself get too frustrated when I’m sewing, but this just annoyed me beyond belief. I think it was because the caption to the pattern read:

Sew me quick! It’s really easy to make this cuddly jacket!

Not so quick, I tell you.

Anyway, I made it through the collar attachment process, only having ripped (and I literally mean ripped, you can’t pick out stitched from this dense of fake fur) it out three times or so. I decided that the lining really wasn’t worth it necessary, omitted the pointless drawstring in the collar and called it a day.

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What can I say? I wear this thing every day. I love, love, love it. It’s super warm, just the right weight and just looks super cool. I hate to brag, but I’ve gotten a lot of compliments on it from random people (young guy who works at the coffee shop, ticket taker at the Blazer game, and sales woman at Nordstrom who wanted to know where I got the fabric). It’s a nice ego booster for me. I feel like a fashionista (which I’m not—I’m not really sure what a fashionista is, but I don’t think I meet the criteria).

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You can sort of see some of the details in the picture above that make this pattern so great—it’s got interesting gathered, almost puffed sleeves, which really make the coat look a bit funkier (since it’s so understated…). The collar is harder to see in detail, but it’s really nice—kind of large and square that can be worn up or down. You can also change the look by using or not using the top coat hook, which changes the way the collar lays (it stands up more when it’s closed; open it lays flat almost like a shawl).

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This is definitely my favorite project of 2007, and really gets me in touch with my inner fashionista.

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6 thoughts on “Punk Poodle Coat

  1. Your version of the jacket is great! The poodle fur is very cool. This is the next project on my list, actually, and I am in the process of cutting out my fabric. However, I am getting stuck on the collar layout. Can you tell me, which end is sewn to the neck line? Is it the seam or fold? Also, is your fabric directional? Mine is, but not the same as BWOF fabric choice and I’m having real spatial conception issues :P Thanks!

  2. The seam of the collar is sewn to the jacket lengthwise. That is, when the collar is lined up with the body of the jacket, it goes almost all the way from edge to edge of the jacket, minus the facings where you place the coat hooks. My fabric was also directional (the fibers laid vertically downward, like a corduroy)… So I folded it like a napped fabric and futzed with the layout until is worked. Post a comment or drop me an email (sewersewist at gmail dot com) if this doesn’t make sense.

  3. Having seen the jacket in person – and not being a sewer, sewist, or even much of a needler, I have to say Sarah looks great in her creation. And no – she didn’t pay me to say this.

    But seeing how cool it looks (and how warm she is in it, during our nasty cold spell) it makes me consider learning to sew.

  4. Pingback: Sewer-Sewist » Not Knitted

  5. No, it’s not really something we do–although we have had requests. It’s so labor intensive, and we love sewing as a hobby. It changes when you do it as work. Do you know what I mean?

    ~Sarah

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