A very long time ago, I made my first Islander pattern, the Jacket Express #218, that I got when I bought a craftsy class – Sew Faster , Sew Better. I have already talked about my impressions about this class here and here.
I started this jacket almost as soon as I finished my first version. But it took me over 2 years to finish it. Ups! Well the reason was: I used a fabric a bit to though to use stitching on and I did not dare make the buttonholes. Not until I got my Janome machine.
As I found size XS to big on me I have made it smaller by taking out 2 cm from the centre back (width) and shortening the sleeves by 5 cm. I tried to use crochet thread for the topstitching (Bad idea – it kept breaking and I had major tension issues but I got there in the end). So the lesson for me here was not to be cheap and buy proper top-stitching thread. For the facings and pocket bags, I used scrap fabric that was left from a skirt I have made. I wanted to add a bit of colour since I used a dark grey fabric. Because on my first jacket I did not like that the top-stitching of the the facing was showing on the front, I decided to hand stich it to create an invisible seam. But the fabric I used was so tough, I lost interest for a few years. I also needed to trust my sewing machine to do the buttonholes without major drama. Usually they were perfect on the scrap fabric, but then disaster stroked when I was finishing a garment. This is no longer the case since I have my Janome machine, buttonholes are no longer a stress for me. However, by the time I bought my new machine I already decided not to add buttonholes to the pocket flap. That was also because I did not have the buttons for it. Other than that I do not remember much from its construction, it has been such as long time. At least, it was upgraded from the UFO pile to the finished garments one. Hurray!
During #MeMadeMay 2016 I wore it a few times, as well as on other occasions since I finished it. It’s pretty comfortable to wear. I am tempted to make another jacket using denim since my denim jacket made it into the charity shop. We even made it to the Mama Mia! musical in Manchester on 1 June (small curiosity, by the way, in Romania we celebrate children on 1 June) with Gemma and her lovely daughter. Proof is the picture with the actors who played Sam and Donna!