Sewing project: Chilton Trench

Work has been very busy lately, and it’s only going to get busier for the foreseeable future, so I decided to take this week off to get a bit of a mental break while I can. Of course, after I made the decision, hurricanes started barrelling towards us, which makes for a less than relaxing break, but we have been very fortunate with neither of the storms hitting New Orleans.

Anyway, since I knew I wasn’t going to spend my week off traveling (HA) I decided I needed to tackle a complicated sewing project. (I probably should have tackled cleaning my house, but that’s no fun.) Anyway, I’ve done a bathing suit, so not that. How about a coat? I’ve made the Pona jacket before, but it’s unlined. I mean a real winter(y I mean this is Louisiana after all) coat!

After looking at a million patterns, I decided on the Cashmerette Chilton Trench. I didn’t necessarily want a trench coat, but I couldn’t find any other patterns I like better so, why not? I knew the instructions would be excellent.

I really would have loved to make this out of wool or a wool blend with a luxurious satin lining, but in the end that would have been cost-prohibitive, considering the amount of fabric this coat requires. At least not for my first time out. And I couldn’t find what I really wanted anyway. So I decided to go with a plum herringbone cotton flannel from Joann’s. It’s a lot nicer than you might expect and only $10/yard (before the inevitable coupons.) And then I went with a dark teal matte satin for the inside. (Same price.) Once I bought the fabric, buttons, shoulderpads, and interfacing, I’d already spent $100, and it probably would have been double that for wool. Maybe next time!

I calculated I spent about 20 hours working on this (or four seasons of Schitt’s Creek.) About four hours cutting out pattern pieces and fabric, and then the rest sewing. And at least one of those hours was fretting over putting the sleeves in backwards (put one in upside down somehow at one point) and how to fix the hem/lining situation. (If I’m being honest, I’m still trying to figure that one out.)

Like I said, the instructions are very thorough and well-written, so just by taking it one step at at time, I was able to get through it. I have to thank David, Alexis, Moira, and Johnny for keeping me company throughout this journey.

And now pics!

Some various full length shots. Belted! Unbelted! Open! The back! With ill-advised purple shoes! And lots of loose threads I realize now I should have removed but oh well!

And now some detail shots like the pockets, the epaulettes, the chest shield (what?), the sleeve belts (trench coats are weird), and the beautiful lining. Love the colors here!

So now I just need the temp to drop at least 20 degrees so I can wear it. It won’t be warm enough on its own if the temp drops super low but that doesn’t happen very often anyway. And it’s roomy enough to layer underneath.

Bring on fall!

First day of 7th grade!

I don’t need to tell you, it sure looked different from years past!

Can you guess who wore the new shirt?

And their classrooms:

They’re all in the same class this year to make life a bit easier and safer, if they do end up back in a real classroom. I guess we’ll see.

And for reference, here they are on the first day at their school, 9 years ago.

Random Tuesday post

I took part in a blogging workshop at work today, and now I am feeling inspired to post.

So let’s see, what have we been up to?

Haircuts!

The boys finally got real haircuts (first time since February or so) and now I feel okay about getting one. We went to a salon owned by the mom of one of their classmates, and everyone was masked and spread out, and it felt fine.

But even more exciting is that I am getting a haircut tomorrow! Mine hasn’t been cut since last September. Of course it was supposed to be cut in March for St. Baldrick’s but that didn’t happen, and it’s been rescheduled twice but as of now it won’t happen until next year and I canNOT wait that long.

I wanted to take a picture of my hair looking as long as possible for a Facebook post so I could get feedback on how much to get cut off tomorrow, and well, that backfired. I had to blowdry it and use a hot brush and a flat iron and a curling iron just to get it looking decent enough to share, and the feedback was largely “just a trim!”

I mean, first of all, thanks for the compliments but you know I never wear my hair down, it’s too much work and it’s too hot. And it’s a nightmare to wash. And it’s so heavy it gives me tension headaches. So I will probably go shoulder length.

My hair after making it look nice:

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If I just let it airdry:

Blog — Pankhurst & Deane

So yeah. Not great. Also I had to wear sunglasses because I forgot I put mascara on yesterday for a school meet and greet and taking it off is more trouble than it’s worth. But also I’m v glam.

In other news, remember how I mentioned that I was making a sourdough starter? Well, it worked! I’m kind of intimidated by it but I used this recipe sorta* to make a loaf of bread yesterday and by golly it worked**!

*This recipe had like forty gajillion steps and I was required to do something like every half hour for an ENTIRE day and I’m sorry, no bread is worth that, so I just like, let my mixer knead it for a while and called that a win. Also I took it out about 20 minutes sooner than the recipe said because it was about to scorch.

**I mean, it was tasty, but it was a very wet dough, maybe because I skipped the half-hourly folding or whattheheckever but it resulted in having to use a lot of flour at the shaping phase so there was a line of flour in the middle.

School starts on Thursday (at home) and I have three desks all set up for the boys. I just got a box of uniforms in the mail that I ordered when there was a sale over the summer in a fit of optimism, so I will definitely make them wear them for a picture. We joked about walking over to the bus stop at 7am but that would just make us all cry.

I took next week off work. Not for any reason except if I don’t do it now, it might be a while before I can. So I’m going to tackle a big sewing project. My motivation to sew has been pretty low lately, but maybe this will help! I’m making a Cashmerette Chilton trench in this plum herringbone flannel with a dark teal satin lining. It’ll definitely keep me busy!

Do I want to make the short or long version? Who knows?

And to close the post, Linus’s snowball before it turned into brown minty-fruity sludge.

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12 and 2/3

What are they up to right now? Enjoying their new room, even still keeping it neat! Playing Football Manager and Fortnite. Not doing enough summer reading. About to start reminding themselves what math is to prep for a placement test. Though surely keeping track of football team standings and scores and all that stuff is keeping their brains sharp? Mmhmm. School starts virtually in a couple of weeks, so I’m frantically trying to get three desks set up around the house.