New project: Corduroy waistcoat, in royal blue!

It’s been a while now since I last got down to some serious sewing. I did the tweed jacket upcycle in the Autumn, but that was only a little hand-stitching. Since then I bought a new sewing machine, and to be honest it’s been sitting there, silent, taunting me, willing me to just get down to it.

Photo 05.03.2016, 10.29.34

So, with a new-found enthusiasm for corduroy, I went ahead and ordered a nice big piece of royal blue 11-wale (as in ridges per inch) fabric. Impossible to find locally, but as is often the case eBay came to the rescue. And if there is one thing you should know it’s that fabric tends to be less expensive than you might think.

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With patterns you really have to focus on the garment itself and try to disregard the dated or merely awful stylings of the models!

I bought a few patterns about a year ago (trust me, it helps to have a good pattern, if you’re not all that experienced) and wanted to try the new waistcoat one. The new Burda pattern certainly looked promising, covering 4 styles and a range of sizes. It took me an evening to cut out all the tissue pieces in the right size, though that is time saved if I use the pattern again.

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Next step is to cut out all the pieces. Being careful and accurate here pays off further down the line, and of course corduroy is very directional. I had an idea to mix the pattern up a little, going with the lapel version, but making my own squarish workwear-inspired pockets.

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Granted, royal blue corduroy waistcoats aren’t that common, but the small welted pockets described in the pattern were very regular fayre.

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At this point, where I started assembling the pieces, I discovered that while the pattern itself was by all accounts decent, the instructions were rubbish. Or maybe a more experienced sewer would understand them. I found them quite baffling, so I sidestepped and looked at the McCalls instructions I used for my previous waistcoats (1, 23 and 4). At this point I also decided to add a lining.

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A little inspiration for the pockets.

So, assembly started and at this point it’s still looking like it might be a nice result! Stay tuned for the next instalment, where it may or may not have gone totally tits up…

At the moment I’m waiting for the 1930’s vintage buttons and buckles I have ordered from a dealer in the Czech Republic. There’s excitement enough just there!

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This was the pattern I used for my previous efforts. Much clearer, or should I say much less unclear, instructions.

1 Comment

  • Sarah Turnbull 13/07/2020 at 14:09

    I’m reading through all your waistcoat posts and enjoying all the ideas you incorporated. I think I will try the McCall’s pattern.


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