Make It Last: Coat Lining Remake
In 2009 I made a wool coat with the help of my G. Betty. It's been in heavy use every winter since, and this year it was finally too worn to keep using. The wool, a nice thick melton wool originally from the now closed Gorgeous Fabrics, was my entire budget for the project at the time so I skimped on lining (you can see where this is going, yes?). I didn't do anything to underline the wool, except for in the facings, there's no shoulder stay, and basically no internal structure.
The wool has held up nicely, it's soft and without underlining the whole coat has a nice slouchy look, which I love. The lining on the other hand, is shredded. At the hem, the armscye, along the seams, in the cuffs. Holes everywhere.
I loved this bright blue lining and there was no replacing it with a similar color. I wound up grabbing some lovely navy rayon twill lining at Mill End. It's fine. It's a lovely quality, and it will last. It's just a little...joyless compared with the bright blue. Le sigh.
Step one of remaking the lining was to search all of my pattern storage both paper and pdf in hopes of finding the original pattern. I've moved house three times since I made this coat, things were cleaned out. Decisions were made. I don't remember what happened to the pattern, but I don't have it anymore. Sh*t.
Step one (b) of remaking the lining is to DRAFT a pattern from the disassembled guts of the old lining! Pick all the stitches! Carefully! Press! Trim off all the seam allowances! Trace onto paper! Measure all the seams for truing!...Sh*t.
The original lining was a very lightweight crepe de chine, and in the last 9 years it's sagged and stretched and as soon as I trimmed off the seams everything lost its shape. Ok, step two: measure all of the jacket panels and adapt the traced off pieces! True all the seams! Realize you drafted the undersleeve backwards and freak out for a minute! Remember you can just turn the piece over! Hooray!
It wasn't without hiccups, but I figured it out. Betty would be proud. I even reattached the buttons properly and the new rayon twill lining is thicker and warmer than the original. Win.