#Blazerof2016: The first toile

blazerof2016 toile front

Welcome to life in the slow lane and my first toile for Mr O’s #Blazerof2016. As anticipated in my last update, the instructions were indeed minimal, which is ok if you’ve done this kind of thing before but I haven’t! When I look at the finished toile I’m wondering what I found so difficult – time is a healer I guess!

It was wholly necessary to make a toile. I already knew the largest size of the pattern wouldn’t be big enough but there was a method in my madness. I wanted to test the construction more than anything and didn’t want to waste time making any preliminary changes to the pattern. Now that it’s made and the process understood I can see exactly what I need to do. I can also see some issues that will need further investigation.

First thing I will need to do is to grade it up a whole size. I will use the traditional cut and spread method. The sleeves need some extra room at the bicep (That news was met with a wry smile!) and I may also need to lengthen the sleeves but that will be confirmed once the 2nd toile is made and the shoulder pads are factored in.

The thing that surprised me most about this design was the lining. Fundamentally, there isn’t much of one but it is a summer blazer so it can be forgiven for half measures! there is a kind of butterfly section that overlaps on the inside back, joining the front facings around the armholes, if that makes sense.
blazerof2016 toile lining

A fine excuse to choose some fun lining fabric I think. The sleeves will be fully lined and the remaining exposed seams finished with binding. Might be nice to make some custom binding to match the butterfly lining. I’m not sure that’s what it’s technically called by the way!

I was a bit concerned about the sleeve caps. There seemed to be more gathering and less ease involved here. Then I read Male Devon Sewing’s post on setting in sleeves where he advises to steam-shrink the eased area of the sleeve caps before sewing in. That will help on the real deal, I’m sure. I’ll see what happens 2nd time round before I properly address this but I may also need to start and finish the ease stitches slightly further apart.

puckers on the sleeve cap

The assembly of the collar and collar stand properly had me confused. I really couldn’t make sense of sewing two concave seams together. But it makes sense now that it adds the roundy shape. The black stitching is where the pressed open joining seam will be topstitched.

back collar up

The topstitching wont be seen in any case once the collar is folded down. Thinking I should use some red melton or similar for the collar stand. It seems to be a feature on some of Mr O’s other jackets. That wont be seen much of either of course. But the joy of knowing it is under there excites me a little bit already!

back collar folded down

The one construction instruction that still didn’t translate was attaching the collar to the lapel. The instructions said to sew all round the edge of the collar to a point, trim and turn right side out. It allows nothing to sink into the top of the lapel seam so unless I find instructions somewhere else, I’m going to stop the stitching further back so I can insert the whole 1.5cm seam allowance of the collar, snuggly in place. You can see in the picture below where I’ve unpicked the stitches already to see if that would work.

collar notch

Burda gives no clue as to how I line the vents on the sleeve cuffs but luckily I read up about ‘fake’ vents on sleeves and so there’ll be no unnecessary fiddlesome lining going on here, hooray!

I’ve enjoyed the process of making a toile, especially getting to write notes all over it so I know what to change and what to remember next time. And I’ve learned so much already, before I’ve even started on the real thing!

So now I’m all set to do some cutting and spreading and will be back with a 2nd toile soon.

While you’re waiting for me, do hop over to see some of Male Devon Sewing‘s amazingly detailed posts for #Blazerof2016. They really are very helpful.


9 Replies to “#Blazerof2016: The first toile”

  1. I got the Singer Tailoring Book from Amazon pretty cheaply, and that takes you through all the sewing steps. A very good book, you might want to look at it or something similar, especially for the collar bit.

    Also, my personal tip with Burda: the drafting is very good and the notches will lead you through how to sew things together. Pay a lot of attention to them – the only hard ones to follow are at the sleeves from what I find.

  2. Looking forward to seeing your progress. I used the book “Tailoring” (not sure if it is the same Laura mentions above) and it answers most questions really well. But I too struggled with figuring out the collar stand! I could never find clear directions about exactly how it should work. Eventually I muddled through and it seems to be correct. Good luck!

  3. Hi! I recently completed a tailored wool blazer which you can find on my blog and I followed a craftsy course which was very worthwhile: https://sewmanju.wordpress.com/2016/01/20/butterick-4610-inside-my-tailored-blazer-and-a-review-of-craftsys-blazer-tailoring-class/
    Getting the collar joined to the lapel is the hardest thing in the world to explain! Watching a video, whether on craftsy or elsewhere will be much easier. I also have the Tailoring book but I had it for a few years and still never really understood what to do, but that could just have been me!

  4. I don’t think your in the slow lane, I haven’t even got around to getting the fabric yet! Poor Mr B will get his jacket at some point. I hoping that reading everyone else’s fantastic blogs will make things clearer for me when I start & I’ll make it faster than I fear

  5. Wow, you’re so brave! Been asked but never attempted to make anything for my better half. I have a wonderful blazer pattern ready to start for myself but fear is holding me off a little bit…good luck with toile number 2! x

  6. Wow, I’m super impressed, you should be proud of this. I have a blazer pattern that’s ready to be started (toile first!) but fear is keeping me off, maybe I’ll take it out of the envelope tonight after reading this. Good luck with the second toile!

    1. Meinen Glückwunsch an die Gewinnerin!Und jetzt aber ganz eigennützig: gibt's diese Woche denn gar keinen neuen Appli-Buchstaben? *schluchz*Liebe Grüße,Petra

  7. Good luck with your blazer! I wish I had done a complete toile instead of a partial to figure out the collar before the real deal. I had some problems with it laying right. #blazerof 2016 has made me want to sew more menswear. It’s very challenging.

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