Friday, February 1, 2013

The Wool Coat Story

Once upon a time, I bought a piece of wool fabric. I brought it home, with dreams of a ruana type coat. It went into the fabric stash..... OK, so now I have to confess, that I not only have a fiber stash, a yarn stash, but I do also have a fabric stash.  :)  Over the years, though, as sewing has taken the back seat, the fabric stash is now smaller than the fiber and yarn stash. So, I know that isn't saying much, cause that could mean the fabric stash is still huge and the yarn/fiber even larger.  Not true.  LOL! The fabric stash has dwindled.  Amazing.

So, anyway, The piece of lovely gray plaid wool, sat languishing in the fabric box and truly wondered if it would EVER get out of there.  One day in 2011, I decided to pull it out and delivered it from the box. Because my idea was to make a ruana cover up, that was sewn from felted wool, I put it in the washer in hot water to see how it would felt. IT DID!! 

About the same time, I realized that I didn't have enough for a ruana....... it was too short and too narrow of a piece.  What's a person to do? Well, I went to my wool fabric stash, that has grown over the years.  Ooops!  Yep, there is another stash... Doggone it.... Well, anyway, the stashes are helpful.  I was able to go to that stash and pull out several pieces and add it to my ruana and decided it would become a coat. :)  A LARGE coat, that my sweaters could be warn under.

Well, it was too large.

So, I crocheted a trim down the front, from my yarn stash, to see if it would look slimmer.  Hahahaha! Talk about big and ugly. Guess what I did? Yep, I tossed it on top of the fabric stash box, in the closet.  I thought there was no hope for it.  The coat was in time out in the closet, on top of the box, for about a year. 

I took it out one morning, just before Christmas 2012, and wore it outside to get pictures of snow.  It was REALLY warm.  hmmmm.  I thought, "WOW, I have to fix this thing."

So, I decided to lay it out on the floor and put my winter jacket on top to use as a guide.  Think it was too big?? 

 Well, I ended up cutting off about 26 inches total, in the width, of the coat. :) If you are a professional seamstress you may just want to skip the next few sentences.  :)  Because this retired professional seamstress did the unthinkable. I did use a ruler, though, and marked a cutting line out from the coat.  Cut off the side pieces and stitched them up.  Didn't start with a pattern, and didn't finish with one.  :)

I also ripped off the trim, that was supposed to make the coat look slim(and didn't).   AND with much encouragement from two of my friends, I crocheted a dark brown trim on it instead. 

I took some of the fabric, that I had cut off, and made cuffs for the sleeves. :)  The plaid fabric is the fabric I bought in a fabric store.  The tan fabric is from my dad's wool coat and the gray was from a wool skirt that I purchased at a thrift store and then felted.

So, there you have it.  I love my new coat.  I have been wearing it on days that are cold, and having a blast!  It is nice and toasty in 30 and 40 degree weather.  Maybe one day, I will get to wear it in colder weather to test it out. It does get colder that 30 here, especially in February.


  1. Cut off 26”!! I guess it was too big.

    Good save! Glad you are enjoying it now. It looks great.

  2. I want to see a photo of you wearing it! I agree that was a good save.