Royal Brocade Coat

royalbrocadecoat6No, my daughter does not need a coat. Her grandparents from California send her jackets regularly (they know we need a whole wardrobe of them here in Seattle and are so sweetly helpful!). So this jacket is solely for “the pretty” and I thought I would take this opportunity to try my hand at a coat.

Many years ago my mom (the most talented and skilled seamstress in the world) told me that it is so difficult to get a jacket to hang correctly that it was worth it just to buy them. Now, after making one, I see her point…but I’m still excited to figure out how to do it. I sew for the fun and challenge!


Pattern: Simplicity 2534. I wrote down this pattern number after another blogger mentioned it was great, but I wasn’t blogging then and I can’t remember who it was so I can link back. So sorry! Yes, the pattern was a good one, but I had my fair share of challenges.

Fabric – medium brocade with quite a bit of drape. It handled the gathers nicely, but didn’t press very well. Lined in purple micro-fleece. The micro-fleece is lighter and thinner, but still soft and cozy.

The lining isn't gathered as full as the coat.

The lining isn’t gathered as full as the coat.

Because I lined in fleece, I chose not to gather the lining around the waist to the same degree as the outside fabric, because I thought that would really make it bulky around the middle. But that little idea also meant I could not hem the coat to the lining to make a completely invisible hem. I ended up doing a blind hem.

Blind hem

Blind hem


Wins Losses
-I could customize the sizing a bit for my slight-shouldered girl, but still make it long enough. I think I could have made the shoulders even narrower to fit her better, but it is a child’s coat so I don’t need to overfit, right?-The fabric is lovely and fancy on the outside, but the fleece makes it nice and snuggly on the inside!

-It went together well, even if I obviously need practice with collars!

-The collar wouldn’t lay flat! I understitched as instructed but I still had to hand-stitch the under collar to the interfacing of the top of the collar.-I could not figure out how to stitch the sleeve to the lining like on RTW and turn it right side out. I tried twice, followed a tutorial, still couldn’t do it, so, defeated, I just hemmed the sleeves by turning them under and catching the lining in the seam. It DOES NOT look professional. *Sob*
Shoulders are still a tad big, but I had already narrowed them a half inch!

Shoulders are still a tad big, but I had already narrowed them a half inch each!

What I learned-

  • Use more interfacing!
  • I need practice in perfecting my buttonhole placement. Of course the machine does buttonholes beautifully, so my challenge is just lining them up and keeping them perpendicular.
  • I need more detailed instructions for collars and jackets. Really, really detailed. I need Jackets for Dummies. I think I’ll purchase a jacket pattern from one of the great indie pattern companies that always include great instructions. I adore Colette patterns and they have the beautiful Anise jacket. Or Sewaholic has the Minoru jacket or Robson coat, though I’m not sure the collars on those are exactly what I’m looking for instruction on.


I might make one for my littlest daughter to practice once more before I try a grown up version. I want to get comfy with collars one way or another. Maybe I should try collared shirts?  Scary!



5 thoughts on “Royal Brocade Coat

  1. It is very pretty and it looks like your daughter adores it. Good job with your first coat. I am going to attempt one this fall. I am nervous.

    • I think the pretty fabric really does help that coat look good, because I had so many problems with it! I am lucky my daughter is very sweet about the items I make for her. She is always proud to say “My mom made it!”

      Are you going to make a coat for you? That is on my list, too! We should find a sew-a-long or something.

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