Monday, December 28, 2015

Two In One: CCP Clare Coat and True Bias Roscoe Dress


An alternate title for this post could be, "Dude, I Finally Made a Coat!"  Seriously, this is so satisfying for me. While I'm proud of my slouchy Papercut Waver jacket, this here is a real, bonafide coat.

So here is my headless self modeling my new coat. I wish I could have gotten some better shots. We were in Japantown yesterday to have lunch and see The Force Awakens, and I tried to get some cool, out-and-about, loving-my-life photos but in all of them I have this miserable expression as if to say, "Just take the damn picture; I'm freezing my butt off here." Which is not to say my new coat isn't warm, but it doesn't get below 50 degrees often here so I'm kind of a wimp.  Okay, here are the details:
  • Pattern: Closet Case Patterns Clare Coat, View B, Size 16 with a 2.5" FBA. I knew I'd be wearing my coat open a lot, so View B made sense.
  • I chose not to underline my fabric because I want to wear it year round, rather than the few weeks when a really warm coat is needed.
  • Fabric: This was my first time sewing with wool, and it did indeed live up to Heather's claims. It really is lovely to sew. It gives off a bit of a pungent odor, though. The black wool is from Fabric Outlet, purchased during their 40% off sale.  It has a little stretch to it. I fell in love with the colorful, patterned polyester lining when I was impulse shopping on Clement St. I think it was around 2 or 3$ per yard. Overall, I spent around $50 total on fabric and notions. The extra large snaps from Pacific Trimming were $20 alone and well worth it, in my opinion. They're easier to manage with cold fingers than buttons. Plus, I really like the look. I scavenged the chain (for hanging the coat on a hook) from an old Banana Republic coat. 
  • Adjustments: Besides the 2.5" FBA, I also shortened all main pieces by 1.5". This worked out well for the sleeves; however, it wasn't enough for the hem. When it came time to bag the lining, I found that the hem really needed an additional 2" turn to be at the right length for me. For this reason, and because I somehow ended up with a lot of extra fabric in the front corners, I ended up hand sewing the lining hem. If I ever make this again, I should shorten 3.5" for the main body and keep the sleeves at 1.5. 
  • I used this technique for sewing the bust dart.
  • My favorite aspect: It fits me really well! With RTW coats I always have to turn up the cuffs. I love that the bottom of the coat hits me right at the bottom of my hips, the sleeves aren't too long, and it easily closes over my chest. This makes such a difference in how I feel about my appearance when I head out into the world. My hair stylist actually gave me the ultimate compliment when I showed it to him: "It looks expensive." Yay!


Now I want to make some notes about the True Bias Roscoe dress. I know this loose style isn't for everyone, but I love it. Big surprise, I made the tunic/mini version and wore it on Christmas day as a babydoll dress with tights and boots. Talk about extra room for stuffing and pie!


  • Fabric: The recommended fabrics are silks and rayon. I could see this style going Holly Hobby/sister wife very easily with the wrong fabric. I think that's why you see a lot of these in pretty and modern/geometric patterned silks rather than floral cottons. Since I wasn't sure how this would look on me, I opted for a linen blend in a safe (but very pretty) solid purchased at Joann Fabric. I don't buy a lot of fabric there for reasons I don't really feel like going into, but the rich color called to me and distracted me from my mission of buying replacement rotary blades. The fabric doesn't cling, which means I can wear it with tights, but I can also see myself wearing it in warm weather. (My favorite vision is as a cover up on a lovely beach holiday in Mexico. Thinking warm thoughts in this chilly apartment.)
  • Construction: I love True Bias instructions. I always feel like I'm getting a really excellent sewing lesson. The technique for the neck ties is so neat and tidy. 
  • I opted to serge instead of french the seams since the fabric is thicker than a silk or rayon. Fortunately, though, I had serger cones in a close matching color, so the insides look quite nice. 
  • Adjustments: I shortened the sleeves by 1" and the body of the dress by 2". I love the length. It covers my butt, so I can wear it with tights (maybe not on a windy day, though), but it would also look cute with leggings. Size is 16. Even though there is tons of ease I opted to do a 1" FBA because I wanted it to hang as intended instead of fitting closer in the bust. Not sure if that makes sense, but that was my thinking.
  • Overall: a fun sew - especially on the heels of a more labor-intensive project. I absolutely love wearing it. 
If you've made it this far, thanks so much for reading. I wanted to get these last projects in for 2015 and am looking forward to blogging my top/bottom fives later this week. Hope you are staying warm and enjoying this last week of 2015. Cheers. 


  1. That coat is beautiful! And you are really making me feel like I could handle sewing one. Thank you! (Although I'm laughing my a** off at 50f being cold... I regularly take blog photos of dresses and tops outside at 20 or 30f! :P But Canada, so yeah.)

    1. Thank you, Gillian, and LOL! It's been 45 degrees most days and I'm freezing indoors! :)

  2. Perfect timing for a coat! It is so cold here (for northern ca) right now. The dress looks great on you and the coat does look very expensive!

  3. Thanks, Noelle! Can you believe how cold it is?! I've never lived in an apartment in SF that had a decent heating system. Yesterday, I had to buy a new space heater because the old one died and it was the last one they had.