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Forum > Creative Sewing > winter coats ( Moderated by Lynnelle)

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winter coats
how to make them warm
smidget
smidget
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Date: 10/25/13 7:02 PM

I don't like heavy, bulky coats for winter but I need something for warmth. I would like to make my own coat but don't know what to use for the insulation part of the coat. What could be used for the insulation portion? I have an Underarmour coat that is very light weight but extremely warm for our NY winters.

ccris
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In reply to smidget <<
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Date: 10/25/13 8:02 PM

Thinsulate. It could very well be the lightweight insulation you found so warm in your Underarmour coat. Click here. There's three different weights, as well as one that's already quilted.

Edited here: Hancock has the 2oz.weight of thinsulate on sale right now. Click here. Don't know how long that sale will last.


-- Edited on 10/25/13 8:36 PM --

Mufffet
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Date: 10/25/13 11:53 PM

Frankly you can't do better than to buy yourself a down coat. Really. I know my winters and my winter coats - down insulation - cannot go wrong. Warm and light. Lasts years.

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biochemistress

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Date: 10/26/13 7:51 AM

How about some boiled wool? Wool and down are incredibly warm in winter.

Kathleen Fasanella
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Date: 10/26/13 8:40 AM

I specialize in coats (RTW).

I understand about wanting to avoid bulk and getting a certain look. Me, I like all kinds of coats, they are all good.

I prefer natural fibers (wool, cotton, leather etc) that are lined. Wool (boiled wool) and leather are best at creating an insulating layer or cushion of air in which heat from your body is trapped and conserved.

In leather jackets, I don't put an insulating batting (quilted to the lining), just a lining itself. Of course leather weight helps. 2oz is good for lightweight jackets, 4 oz is pretty warm but can be hard to sew without the right pattern and machines.

I personally haven't ever purchased boiled wool but I've made a close facsimile thereof by washing and drying wool several times.

My current project is a letterman's type jacket for my husband with a zip close and quilted lining. I plan to write about it on my site but could not tell you at this time, how much detail I will go into. Could be helpful tho/

Speaking of lining, this can help with warmth too, more than the obvious. For jackets that will be worn a lot (not fashion jackets), I prefer to use heavier bridal satin (polyester). This can take a lot of wear and still look good. I quilt a filler to the underside, I'm partial to cotton quilt batting, nothing fancy. The goal is to create layers that will trap warm air.

Design is another element. A longer coat or a coat that is open around the bottom, is not going to be as warm as a jacket that is snug about the high hip (covering kidneys). For that, one can use ribbing but it is difficult (impossible) to find heavy coat weight ribbing at retail. I also don't like for the whole waistband to be ribbing because it doesn't wear as well but that's another story. At any rate, you can create channels in the waist band and insert elastic to pull it into the body.

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smidget
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Date: 10/26/13 9:29 AM

I am only 5 foot tall and always cold in the winter. Depending on RTW clothes, my sweaters are a Medium or Large depending on style or manufacture (I don't like snug fitting). My problem is that I have a broad back so in order to move my arms forward I need to go a size larger than I should in a coat or else I can't move. When I go a size larger, the coat looks sloppy as the shoulder seams don't lay where they should. If I do find a coat that would possibly fit, I won't be able to wear a sweater under it as the coat would be snug. I have had this issue my whole life and it is frustrating to say the least. I just went shopping for another Under Armour coat as they are light weight and warm but even the XL were tight. My other thing is that I like a coat that is stadium length so that it covers me when I sit down.

KathySews
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Date: 10/26/13 10:10 AM

I just made a fall weight coat (Vogue 8841 using the Craftsy class with Kenneth King) for similar reasons. I am short plus sized and coats always look sloppy on me because of the shoulders.

I have thinsulate for another coat but must find a different fabric. I learned that thinsulate cannot be dry cleaned. Glad I found out before all the work.

ccris
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Date: 10/26/13 10:53 AM

Thinsulate Ultra is both washable and dry cleanable. Check out Seattle Fabrics for further info. I linked to it above.

Nancy K
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In reply to smidget <<


Date: 10/27/13 4:48 PM

A wool cashmere blend is much lighter than wool melton for instance. I would underline my lining with either cotton flannel or lambswool which can be found at Steinloff and Stoller.
Thinsulate cannot be dry cleaned so don't use it in a wool coat. A thin polar fleece is also an option for underlining.
Wind protection is another way to get a warm coat. There is an old article in Threads by Kathleen Brenne who lives and works in Canada on how to make a coat warm. I don't recall what she used but she added it in the upper back and front between the coat and the lining. She also used interlining for warmth.

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ccris
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In reply to Nancy K <<


Date: 10/27/13 6:19 PM

Quote: Nancy K
Thinsulate cannot be dry cleaned

Seattle Fabrics says it "IS" dry cleanable and washable. Can you link to where you got your information that it isn't dry cleanable? Thanks.


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