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A few months ago, I mentioned that my 2022 goal was to sew a trench coat. I couldn’t make up my mind between 2 patterns. And the one I’ll show you below wasn’t even among the finalists…Talk about a surprise!!!
So I sewed the lovely Deer and Doe’s Luzerne trench coat, that doesn’t have all the bells and whistles I asked for…and I LOVE it!
Luzerne, an unlined trench coat
First and foremost, this is an advanced pattern. Be warned!
So this is an unlined trench coat, close-fitting, double-breasted, with 2- part sleeves, no flap, neither back vent….Well, why did I choose it, by the way, because I was dead-set on all the peculiarities of traditional trench coats????
Often a woman changes her heart…Nevermind…..I started with a muslin. I tend to sew muslins for every tricky garment. I should do it on every garment, but budget (and lazyness) pushes me to only muslin the advanced patterns.
I was pretty sure I would need a heap of alterations. I only had to do a narrow shoulder’s (+ lengthening the sleeve).
The waist seam was spot-on. I’m only 5’4″ so if you are long-torsoed or taller than me, just check where that seam hits.
Poppy red Luzerne
My own Luzerne was not traditional: no beige, but a dark red, that is more poppy red than dark, in my opinion. This gabardine* has some stretch and it was a pleasure sewing with it.
This pattern is a greedy pig for fabric and thread: 3m50 of fabric and I needed 3 100-m spools of thread (because of topstitching and bound seam allowances).
According to the size chart, I was a size 40 bust and size 42 waist and hips.
Assembling the pieces was easy. However, topstitching and binding the seam allowances were time-consuming.
I could have skipped the bound SA, but since the trench coat is unlined, that means the SA are showing. You could serge them, but I wanted something cute on the inside too. Hence the tedious task of binding the SA. I needed 10m of store-bought binding (I would have needed a bit more).
One of the trickiest things in this pattern, for me, was the bound buttonholes. It was mostly due to the gabardine’s resistance to creasing. I couldn’t get the welts crisp enough to stay put!
I’ll try this method next time.
When I saw these buttons at the haberdasher’s, I knew they were meant for me. I needed 9, they only had 6. They were kind enough to phone their satellite shop half-an-hour south that had 4 remaining. A flat button is also necessary on the inside to fully close the coat (and is a beast to get buttoned! I’m wiggling every other time to get it properly done!).
Do I like it?
More than that: I LOVE it! It’s true it’s not the traditional trench coat pattern I had in mind, but it will be a really nice addition to my spring/fall wardrobe. It was a time-consuming project, but every step was clearly explained and it was a pleasure sewing it.
I even hand sew the hems as instructed!
2 things got me crazy though. First was the ease at the sleeve. Way too much ease. I pondered reducing it, but if I had failed I had no extra fabric to cut new sleeves from.
Second was topstitching the facing at the pricness seams. In my opinion, since the edges are bound, the facing should be shorter by the seam allowance. It’s not, resulting in extra layers.
Besides these two points, I can wear my trench coat either with a pair of jens or a dress. You can notice that it’s a rather short coat (I’m 5’4″).
Well, now the question is: will I ever find the traditional trench coat pattern I’m longing for?
I bought another French trench coat apttern that looked really promising. Alas, I found out that the sleeve was cut on the fold and that’s a big no-no from me. I may draft a new two-piece sleeve…one day…or if I can find a pattern draft course near me.