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Dressmaking and Quilting Dresses and Quilted Coats

Dressmaking and Quilting is how I spent last week. I have been making dresses and quilting coats. This is my work in progress.

Quilted Coats

Mainly this has been a hand stitching project this week. I am near completion on the back of this new quilted coat but far from finished. This particular coat will feature in the forthcoming ‘Quilted Coats ecourse’. It is a piece of fabric that lends itself well to embellishments such as hand stitch, beading and yoyos. The latter are my new found joy.

dressmaking and quilting
Hand stitched and embellished quilted coat. A Karen Platt design.

The pattern will be available in the new ecourse and this is the third quilted coat to be included. I have not decided if it is the last.

The second quilted coat is still in construction. I finally bought the thread for it and I have also cut the linings for the front. I just have to be brave enough to start quilting now. It takes courage!

dressmaking and quilting
Second Quilted Coat

Dressmaking

It almost seems strange to do dressmaking without quilting, but I have sewn a dress and almost finished a second one. I am very proud of my topstitching around the neck. I did not really have the confidence, but then thought ‘go for it’ and it was a success. This is William Morris Moda fabric.

dressmaking and quilting
My William Morris dress

The front of the second one was stitched together quite some time ago. When I had finished the other one, made with a pattern, albeit altered to fit; I realised how to finish the second one. The back was finished today. So there is just the neckline, armholes and hemline to do. A doddle.

dressmaking and quilting
Second dress almost complete

I am not a natural dressmaker, so this is quite an achievement. The dresses join the one I made last year, which I am wearing today. Each design is different. This week I discovered a wonderful quilted dress on Instagram, so maybe I might make a quilted dress.

Next Plans

Usually people want to know what Karen did next (Ha ha! What Katy did next was a favourite childhood book). Should I reveal all? It might be nothing more than finishing projects – after all there is the blue dress and quilted coats to finish. There is also the blue velvet coat that goes with that blue dress that I seem to have been making forever.

Will I have time to start something new? Tune in next week to see if I have a new project in my dressmaking and quilting life. I might just have.

Words, work and images copyright Karen Platt 2021

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Quilted Coat Completed Project Making Clothes

Quilted Coat completed project is actually two projects in one. This is not only the quilted coat itself, the first one I have made and completed. In addition it is part of an ecourse on making quilted coats. If you love quilting and enjoy making clothes, or even if you have never made anything before, take a look at my existing Making Quilted Jackets and shortly you’ll be able to buy Making Quilted Coats.

THE FINISHED PROJECT

Now I can reveal the quilted coat completed project. Maybe I could claim it is three projects in one because this coat is not only quilted, it is fully reversible. That was a first for me, making a reversible garment. With my easy to follow pictorial instructions, this is a breeze to make. I am so happy with the finished coat.

quilted coat completed project
One side of the reversible quilted coat
quilted coat completed project
the other side of the reversible quilted coat

WHERE TO FROM HERE?

I seem to have more projects than hands. A team of little mice is needed to come in and do the sewing whilst I am asleep. The other quilted coat I have already stitched the quilt top for is awaiting some new thread. So that is in the pipeline. Two dresses are almost completed – they are both simply dressmaking and sewing, not quilting.

A few days ago I got a piece of my Cathedral Windows Quilting out, when I showed it on Instagram, everyone fell in love with it. It would make a panel for a quilted coat. It needs some thought as I would not be cutting into it.

Today, I cut the front and back of another coat. It was originally a curtain in my last home and has lived in a drawer, unused for seven years. It was therefore use it or lose it time. I plan to hand stitch this one and make some handmade embellishments.

quilted coat

Tune in next Monday and see how far I have progressed.

Words, work and copyright Karen Platt 2021

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Quilting Reversible Coats Two Coats In One

Quilting reversible coats is a bit more challenging but you get two coats in one. Using a non traditional lining, you can create coats that give you two different looks.

Every time I made the quilted jackets, a little voice inside my head said ‘make it reversible’. Yet the outer and inner fabric plus quilt wadding does not make this an easy task. Still, I am always up for a challenge.

THE JELLY ROLL QUILTED REVERSIBLE COAT

The jelly roll quilt is now complete as far as patchwork goes. The sleeves are now done with two linings and two outers. This quilted coat is the one that started life as a jelly roll that was made into 4 art quilts. I unpicked those to make a coat. I dislike nylon linings found in commercial coats, so I chose another quilting fabric that was pure cotton. The Morris metallic fabrics are a little heavier than the usual quilting fabrics, but I thought they were too good to hide. So this will definitely be the first time I am quilting reversible coats along with the second on my quilting table

quilting reversible coats
sleeves for the jelly roll quilt

THE HEXAGON QUILTED REVERSIBLE COAT

Unlike the jelly roll quilted coat, this one is all hand stitched. Yet I have finished all the hexagons around the same time. over 100 made in around one month. Good going. Now to sew them all together.

Also unlike the first one, this quilted coat has a plain lining in pure cotton. One of the fabrics from the front of the coat.

I have loved making this, although my hands have sometimes complained.

quilting reversible coats
Just two of the wonderful hexagons

QUILT WADDING

Or batting if you prefer is a matter of choice. Some go for cheap, some for content, others for the environment. There are lots of arguments about it all. My preference is for natural quilt wadding. If you are taking the time to make it, both you and the product deserve the best. All the quilted jackets were made with silk wadding. That seems hard to come by at the moment and it is the most expensive wadding of all. For these two coats I opted for wool, but when it came the wadding has such high loft (1cm) that I thought I would look like Bibendum. More wool and silk are on order. I purchased the Hobbs silk wadding as I could not get the one I used for the quilted jackets.

Tune in next week to see which I choose and how I quilt my two coats.

The ecourse will be available shortly, meanwhile take a look at all the quilting and textiles ecourses I offer here

Words, work and images copyright Karen Platt 2021

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Quilted Coats Progress Making Clothes

Quilted coats progress seems slow. I am currently making two quilted coats at once – one machine stitched and one hand stitched. Obviously, the machine stitched version is coming along more quickly and nearing quilting stage.

Hand Stitched Quilted Coat

I imagined this as mid-calf length however, I seem to have hit a stumbling block. Would I wear this as a coat? I love the individual hexagons but I keep asking myself does it look better as a lap quilt or even a wall quilt? I asked Instagram followers and those that commented were in favour of the quilted coat. Still I dither. The background fabric you can see is the lining, the only one I could still buy enough of and not the one I wanted.

quilted coats progress
Quilted coat

The image above is not the final layout as I won’t know where everything fits until I have made the last hexagon. My eye is not seeing this as a coat. If it does end up being a coat, I am now thinking knee length.

quilted coats progress
Fabulous hexagons

Machine Stitched Quilted Coat

Quilted coats progress seems much easier with this jelly roll quilt. Not only has it been a doddle to stitch, I love it. For the lining I chose some William Morris metallic fabric. I am going to make this coat reversible so that I can wear it either way. It makes me think of day and night.

The whole of the outer is complete. The back and front linings are done. All I need do now is the sleeves. I need to shape the sleeves and neckline in order to quilt. I am going for a quilting design that will keep the coat supple and not stiff.

quilted coats progress
Coat outer back
quilted coats progress
Coat lining back

Hand Dyeing

I have been looking through the ecourse I started writing some years ago. I have now been hand dyeing fabrics for many many years and this ecourse is now reaching fruition. Keep tuned with the blog for the launch. See more ecourses here

Words, work and images copyright Karen Platt 2021

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Design Decisions For Making and Creating

Design decisions is about the decisions we make along the way when we are making and creating. For me this is a process that follows a particular pattern – research, ideas (at least three), more research, possibilities, elimination, following the one idea to a conclusion. The final make.

With every project there are design decisions and processes to follow. That’s why given a theme, every artist or creator can come up with something different. That’s what makes it so interesting.

Let’s take a look at what I am working on at the moment – two separate quilted things. I call them things at the moment because they might not end up as what I think they are.

Design One

If you have been reading the blog, you are familiar with the fact that I have been making quilted jackets, and now I am moving onto quilted coats. With this first design, the hexagons show off the fabric design, Moda Voysey, to perfection. I am now looking at arrangement.

design decisions for making
Design decision for making – layout

I could lay these hexagons out in lights to darks, or in an alternate arrangement. Or in like fabrics.

design decisions for making
layout

At some point in the design process, an element of doubt often creeps in. Did I make the right choices? Should that have gone there? The overnight test is a wonderful invention! My doubt with this is, as much as I love the fabrics, do I want to wear them in a coat?

Design Two

If you need longer than an overnight test, some perspective can be achieved by waiting for things to fall into place. So I started another design, not only for the reason that Design One is handstitched and therefore slow, but to consider how I felt about those fabrics as a coat.

design decisions for making
coat design two

I am already much further on with this design. Pin onto a design wall if you can. If you have ever wondered why, look at the two photos here. Pinned to the wall gives you a much better impression of where you are really at with design and colour.

design decisions for making
design wall

eCourses

Want to learn more about design? You can join one of my ecourses here. They are written for you to develop your own creative way, not by copying, but by understanding the processes involved. They are all unique and written by me as a fully qualified teacher and practising artist, textile artist and quilter. You can start anytime and receive tutor input. Take a look now.

Words, work and images copyright Karen Platt 2021

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New Projects Quilting Textiles Stitch and Mark Making

New Projects Quilting Textiles is a showcase for what I have been doing last week and in the weeks to come. This new work will take time to come to fruition but it is always good to start something new. Of course, it is a continuation of all that has gone before, but heading in a new direction. That’s what makes it so exciting.

QUILTING

I’ll begin with the quilting, because I hinted at this last week. Having launched the Quilted Jackets ecourse, I am continuing the Making Clothes Series with Quilted Coats. I made a start on the first project by making hexagons. I managed to make 21 in one week. At that speed, I shall finish the whole hand stitched and quilted coat in around two to three months. The jury is still out on the exact style and length since I am concentrating on getting the hexagons made. Each one is sewn by hand. I am really enjoying my ‘quiet time’ every evening stitching the patchwork and watching it grow before my eyes. Of course, this type of patchwork is perfect for taking outdoors or on a journey as it is totally portable. I am thrilled with the Voysey fabrics and keep pondering on lining fabric for this coat. All the instructions will be in the ecourse.

new projects quilting textiles
new project quilted coat
new ecourse Making Quilted Jackets
the new ecourse cover with FIVE jackets

TEXTILES

Unlike the quilting project, this textile project came out of the blue. It is based on an existing Mark Making ecourse I wrote last year, but this one just concentrates entirely on different ways of Mark Making on the computer. Digital Mark Making explores using the computer for stitched textiles in twelve lessons. This is an underused aspect of digital design. The exercises and samples of work will make you use that software! Apps are useful too. I am really enjoying writing this ecourse.

new projects quilting textiles
digital mark making
new projects quilting textiles
digital mark making for stitch

So you can see that my new Projects Quilting Textiles are keeping me very busy and keeping me on my toes.

Words, work and images copyright Karen Platt 2021

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New eCourse Beginners Quilted jackets

New eCourse Beginners Quilted Jackets. Another new launch. This ecourse is aimed at beginners. It will teach you all you need to know about making quilted jackets either by hand or machine. It is illustrated throughout with colour photographs. Learn from home with tutor input if needed.

ecourse beginners quilted jackets
new ecourse

I started my first hand stitched sleeveless jacket in 2018. The final jacket for this ecourse was finished yesterday. I love to handstitch in the evenings, it is so relaxing and passes the time. There is nothing more pleasant than your own handmade clothes.

ecourse beginners quilted jackets
my first hand quilted jacket

What’s Included

This new eCourse Beginners Quilted Jackets includes:

Making your own pattern

Taking Measurements

Getting the Right Fit

Five designs

Quilting Ideas

Finishing

Tips and Techniques

ecourse beginners quilted jackets
ecourse beginners quilted jackets

The ecourse includes two sleeveless jackets, one hand stitched and one machine stitched. A hand stitched jacket and a machine stitched longline sleeveless jacket. A machine stitched indigo jacket. Suggestions for adjusting and altering are given too. So there is lots of scope for making your own clothes. All styles could be hand stitched or machine stitched.

a patchwork quilted jacket
a patchwork quilted jacket

What’s Next?

I am already working on writing the next ecourse, which is another in the Making Clothes series. I am planning a series of coats. This series will also include recycling old coats or fabrics to make something new. I have planned at least four styles.

quilted coat design EPP
quilted coat design EPP

The first coat design is an EPP hexagon coat with the fabulous Moda Voysey fabric. This is growing quite quickly even though it is all hand stitched. I have had the fabric for some time now and it is a pleasure to be sewing it up into something so useful.

Moda Voysey fabric
Moda Voysey fabric

This is a more adventurous ecourse than the first, including more techniques and design work.

Find all the ecourses, including this new one on the website.

The direct link to this ecourse

That’s all for this week, see you next Monday

Words, work and images, copyright Karen Platt 2021