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Pattern Reviews> McCall's> 7798 (Men's Jacket)

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Reviewed by:Peter in NYC

About Peter in NYCstarstarstarstar
Member since: 6/9/09
Reviews: 67 (patterns: 61)
Skill level:Intermediate
Favored by: 126 people
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Posted on:10/12/09 3:59 PM
Last Updated:10/12/09 4:11 PM
Review Rating: Helpful by 2 people    Very Helpful by 16 people   
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35 Comments      Login to Add a Comment    
DoggyGirl said... (10/19/09 0:49 AM) Reply
Awesome jacket. I like the sequence of photos you provide - good info and instructional to boot. But I have to say, the photo I loved best was the one of your two chihuahuas hunkered down and cuddled up in fabric! Yes, I'm insanely in love with dogs....
Nancy Anne said... (10/18/09 3:15 PM) Reply
Very nice jacket, Peter. Jackets are one of my fav things to make! For a shaping tool for sleeve caps and smaller areas like that, a rolled up terry towel can help. Oh yeah- I've learend not to let my daughter, who is a mini-me, try the things I make on. It's discouraging and I wind up feeling guilty for keeping them when they look better on her.
Georgene said... (10/18/09 1:33 PM) Reply
I have had this same pattern for years and have never attacked it. Felicitations on your tailoring attempt. Since you are in NYC you have access to a lot of arcane supplies that would be hard to find elsewhere. Do invest in a June Tailor board if you can find one. I got mine at Greenberg and Hammer. Sew in interfacing is GOOD if you use the right quality. I am not sure that the anchors away fabric would be the right choice in any other circumstance than this practice garment. It looks like you learned a lot. (BTW it does take an experienced tailor 40 hours to make a proper jacket.) I highly recommend the Kenneth King CD On Jackets, and that you apply yourself to learning how to shrink out ease at the sleeve cap with a sleeve board, a damp cloth, and an iron. You have a fine hand and can do well. I look forward to seeing your progress.
sewgranny said... (10/17/09 2:29 PM) Reply
Only someone who is oblivious and new to sewing would attempt to sew a man's blazer for god's sake. Keep it up, you are doing a great job on all your projects. Your pictorials are wonderful and remind us who have been sewing awhile of all the times that we have made those same mistakes and more. (some not so long ago) I met you at the show in Novi and was very impressed with your vintage bedsheet shirt. When you take something on, you go at it full force. Keep on sewing and taking those pictures, there are a lot of us out here rooting you on and will soon be learning new techniques from your tutorials. P.S. I am very jealous that you can go out and buy just about any type of fabric that you want. That doesn't happen in my town.
mochimo said... (10/14/09 12:16 PM) Reply
You did a great job! I bow to you for even *trying* to sew a men's blazer. And for writing great reviews. And for taking so many nice and useful photos.
vivianna said... (10/13/09 8:11 PM) Reply
I am impressed with your hard work and result. And thank you for that review-you made my day.
pterion said... (10/13/09 1:22 PM) Reply
Kudos on such an ambitious project, Peter! I think it turned out nice and you wear your new jacket really well. The web album rocks - thanks for taking us along on the ride (cute doggies!)
Melody said... (10/13/09 12:04 PM) Reply
What a great review. I think you did an incredible job on the jacket. I love the lining and the darts as well. I totally get having to break it off with your jacket. I have so many broken romances in my sewing room. Great job, great review.
RLL said... (10/13/09 12:03 PM) Reply
You have a natural born talent here, but I have said before and will say again, I am in awe of your guts. The way you challenge yourself with things that people with years of experience don't do is to be truly admired. Thank you for taking the time to do sometimes humerous, but always complete and inspiring reviews.
thirteenstitches said... (10/13/09 9:23 AM) Reply
Thank you for posting another helpful as well as entertaining review : ) You are as cute as a button!!! Again Bravo on a job VERY well done! I for one am looking forward to your next review. Hopefully soon. 13---'s
fourkid said... (10/13/09 9:10 AM) Reply
Wow - very inspiring. Your jacket may not be perfect - but it is amazing! I have sewn for over 30 years and not come near your level of ability - I think I need to take up the challenge and dive into sewing some more challenging projects. Your buttonholes are significantly improved! Can't beat those vintage Singers for that task.
Peter in NYC said... (10/13/09 8:18 AM) Reply
Thank you SO much for your encouragement, everybody. I think I WILL upgrade to wool next time, or at least something better than a cheap (there, I said it) synthetic that frays easily and can only be pressed at the polyester setting. Nancy, I just ordered the "Jackets for Everybody" DVD on Amazon on your recommendation; I can't deal with another book. I need live action -- or at least stop-action puppets. If I look at another blurry illustration of right and wrong-side, clipped, interfaced seam allowances on an inside-out notched collar my eyes will permanently cross. I think there IS hope for a reconciliation down the road with my garment (was that a collective sigh of relief I just heard out there?), after I've had some time to process the experience and re-ground myself in regular (non-sewing) life. There IS more to life than hemming acetate lining, isn't there? Isn't there?
jilly cooper said... (10/13/09 7:06 AM) Reply
Peter I can relate to the comment "it's just time...move on". I am happy to leave some projects and use my passion elsewhere too.
SpinningJenny said... (10/13/09 6:17 AM) Reply
Thanks Peter for such a wonderful read, and the great photos. Your experience absolutely resonates for me!
Annette1 said... (10/13/09 3:01 AM) Reply
How NICE, Peter. You by-God SHOULD be proud of those DARTS! The whole jacket looks REALLY nice. You've definitely got the KNACK for sewing/tailoring. I always enjoy your reviews.
moushka said... (10/13/09 2:35 AM) Reply
You write the such clever and amusing reviews and your photo captions are priceless. Good on you for persevering as far as you did. Tailored jackets are a whole other beast from shirtmaking. Be kind to yourself and use 100% wool fabric and proper interfacing, stay tape, etc., for your next effort. With all the steaming, shaping, and fabric manipulation that has to be done to tailor well, attending a good tailoring class will really pay off, taking your sewing skills to the next level. You really deserve to treat yourself. Can't wait to see what you do next!
pammieh said... (10/13/09 1:04 AM) Reply
I can't believe you are so talented to attempt this so soon - you are some crazy talented. BTW, I love the sketched models on the retro pattern - hilariously retro.
QuickFade said... (10/12/09 11:04 PM) Reply
Peter, congratulations on a great effort and a fun jacket to wear. Many people never even attempt a structured blazer. I agree that wool or natural fabric will make sewing a blazer MUCH more user-friendly. I guess you have all the sources you need there in NYC, but for me if I were going to take that, I'd go straight to and get some Zegna wool, linen, cotton suiting or a blend of them on sale for cheap. Poly is very difficult to press and make look like we want jackets to look. Also, think about getting a friend to help you make a duct tape dummy so you can fit your pattern on it and get exactly the right fit for your own body, ot only your dimensions but also the way you hold your body, etc. Once you get the fit down, you can use a natural fiber suiting and make a custom blazer that really shows off your physique to advantage. I've not made a truly structured blazer for a long time. You are inspiring me.
sew2little said... (10/12/09 10:59 PM) Reply
Men's clothes are so much harder. True, a tailored woman's jacket or a complicated woman's pattern is just as challenging, but women have all kinds of easy patterns to make too. So, I commend you for undertaking a complicated garment--and succeeding! (I'm telling you, a simple little sundress is a wonderful thing!)
AnitaJ said... (10/12/09 10:57 PM) Reply
Whew! I'm feelin' your exhaustion with the trials and tribulations of this blazer. Kudos to you for pushing through to making it wearable! Much better than I could've done. Great darts & buttonholes too!
Heidi Ho said... (10/12/09 10:45 PM) Reply
Very nice job!!
BrianSews said... (10/12/09 8:50 PM) Reply
I loved reading this... it's so true!
Sewing Joe said... (10/12/09 8:41 PM) Reply
Well done!
birdmcfarland said... (10/12/09 8:34 PM) Reply
You rock. Bravo. Awesome jacket.
SandraB said... (10/12/09 8:18 PM) Reply
Your jacket looks good Peter. Love the photo essay and I love reading your reviews. You may find that working with fabrics that contain a higher percentage of natural fibre will be far easier to work with. This is especially true for tailoring, where the natural fibres are easier to press.
Michelle L said... (10/12/09 7:26 PM) Reply
Fantastic review! I love all your photos, and all the work you put into the captions.
Nancy K said... (10/12/09 6:38 PM) Reply
LOL. Great review and I agree that in the life of some garments its time to move on to the next project. If you are going to make more jackets I'd invest in wool fabric. It is much easier to tailor wool as it molds so beautifully. A tweed is also much more forgiving for a beginning tailor.
SueV said... (10/12/09 6:12 PM) Reply
I'm impressed. Nice jacket, very ambitious! Great pictorial review. I like the interfacing save and recycling... and a really nice review of reality sewing !
dbsewer said... (10/12/09 5:30 PM) Reply
I do hope you get together again with your jacket for a little hand-sewing and maybe even some pressing. This looks like a lovely jacket and you're really brave to tackle something so complex. FYI Kenneth King has a marvelous book on jacket making available here on PR which I'd recommend. Easy to follow, great, clear instructions. Personally, I'd avoid acetate for anything but costumes as it doesn't do well over time. A great job on a tough project.
nancy2001 said... (10/12/09 5:03 PM) Reply
I laughed so hard at your description of the project, tears streamed down my face. Peter, you've earned your jacket making stripes. Every mistake you made, I've made as well. And your jacket turned out much better than my early attempts. I'm sewing a double breasted blazer with peaked lapels right now, and jacket making does get easier every time you do it. Also you need to add to your jacket making book collection -- I highly recommend Jackets for Real People by Palmer/Pletsch.
FreyaStark said... (10/12/09 4:52 PM) Reply
It's hard to imagine a more difficult and challenging sewing project than a men's tailored jacket, and you've done well to be persist and finish it to a wearable standard. The next one will seem easier.
puddypaws said... (10/12/09 4:44 PM) Reply
Another nice looking project even if it was a bit difficult. Your review is as usual informative and fun. Keep up the great work!
Tiner W said... (10/12/09 4:39 PM) Reply
Wow! Impressive! I was looking at some Burda men's patterns recently, wondering if I am ready to sew like this for my DH. After seeing all your work--Nope! Not yet! Thanks for the review, the inspiration, and the cautionary tale.
Rhonda in Montreal said... (10/12/09 4:39 PM) Reply
"jaundiced view of romance"... Sew clever, sew funny!! Great Review!!
lyndle said... (10/12/09 4:25 PM) Reply
Awesome that you did this just from pattern and a book! From the photos it looks pretty good. I hope you are going to wear it (or let Michael wear it). I love the drama of the photo essays you do - they're great. (I too would be keen to know how to cope with a pleat when lining, in case I ever get brave enough to make a jacket).
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