Author: Megan Francine

Gucci-inspired Blazer

Several months ago, a red petersham ribbon-trimmed Gucci blazer caught my eye. Gucci had used two inexpensive and simple trims to create a blazer that is completely unique and bold. At the time, I searched for blazer patterns eager to recreate this Gucci blazer, but I couldn’t find a pattern that would reproduce the look I was seeking. When the Jasika Blazer pattern by Closet Case Patterns was released, I knew the classic styling paired with the multiple types of suggested interfacing would yield the results I needed to recreate this blazer. I ended up purchasing the online class the day it was released.

I pressed my Jacket before my photoshoot, but I think our heavy humidity here caused the fabric to relax a little as shown in the wavy lines next to the trim. Oh well. Here is a great side-by-side of my inspiration and my hacked Jasika.

I highly recommend buying the class which comes with a free digital copy of the Jasika pattern. I consider myself somewhat of an advanced sewer, but I still learned more than I expected. Topics including pressing techniques and wool fabric manipulation were covered in the video. I would consider this pattern as advanced due to the amount of pieces and steps involved to put it together. However, if you are an ambitious intermediate sewer, the video will walk you through difficult parts step by step. While the written instructions are very detailed, there were many tips and tricks about tailoring in the video that are not covered in the instructions.

I used a size 4 at the bust and waist and tapered to a size 8 at the hips. The fit of my first muslin of the jacket fit better than any RTW blazers I have tried on. In fact, this is currently the only blazer I own because I was never satisfied with the fit of RTW. However, I did make a few tweaks in the pattern to perfect the fit. The first muslin felt a little tight in the shoulders so I did a 1/8” broad shoulder adjustment on each side, but now I think it was unnecessary. I also did a 3/8” swayback adjustment. These were the only fitting adjustments I made. However, I did do other style adjustments to mimic the Gucci version. I squared off the pockets, drafted a peak lapel to replace the notch version included in the pattern. I also increased the height of the welt on the breast pocket by 3/8″ to accommodate the trim. I did a post on my insta stories about how I drafted the peak lapel here.

I purchased Max Mara brand nautical print silk twill from Emma One Sock for the lining. Interfacing, sleeve heads, and shoulder pads came from the Jasika blazer kit from Closet Case Patterns. The button came from a store on Fabric Row in Philadelphia. Navy lip cord trim, 1/8″, came from Etsy, and the 1″ eggshell petersham ribbon came from The Sewing Place. The jacket fabric is a Pierre Cardin double face wool satin faille from B and J fabrics. The right side is a faille weave and the reverse is a satin weave. Interfacing adheres to this fabric really well, and I haven’t had any issues with bubbling so far.

I didn’t want to add the piping in between the lapel facing and lining since the trim already made the center front a little bulky. Instead, I added pick stitching with red thread to understitch the lining.

I also added catch stitching to secure the lapel to the collar on the reverse side.Without the catch stitch, the lapels curls forward like little wings as seen in progress picture below:

I plan on writing another blog post soon about how I attached the trim. The tutorial was too long to put into one post, so I decided to split them up.

Although I used premium fabric for my blazer and spent a little over $200 on materials, the Gucci blazer is $2,500 and is made of polyester with polyester lining. And, after wearing the blazer in 80 degree weather, I don’t regret the silk lining as it kept me cooler than I had anticipated! I’ll be waiting for cooler summer nights to sport this new blazer again soon!

Spaniel Seersucker Skirt

McCalls 7606 Wrap Skirt

I saw this fabric with little brown dogs on it at my local fabric store, Five Eighth Seams, and I immediately bought a couple yards knowing it was destined to be a new skirt in my closet. I love how crisp and cool the seersucker feels, and it was easy to make too!

I sewed this skirt up using McCall’s 7606 with a few changes. I shortened the entire skirt so it would be calf length instead of maxi length. Also, I incorporated the ruffle at the top into the waistband, so it wouldn’t flap around so much. I used a button closure on the inside top right and a hook and bar closure at the top left, just before the ruffle begins. At the outside edge of the ruffle, I used a small snap. I guess you could say there is no chance of a wardrobe malfunction in this skirt! These closures are way more secure than the ties like the pattern suggests, and I like the security and the sleek look without the bow. The fabric was a little transparent, so I interlined the skirt with white cotton batiste from my stash, and it is the perfect opacity and weight for the skirt.

McCalls 7606 Wrap Skirt

Before I gathered the ruffle, I hemmed it using a narrow roll hem foot. This attachment takes some getting used to, and I have butchered the beginning of many, many hems by unknowingly using this attachment incorrectly until I finally watched this video about using my specific Bernina foot. Though, I am assuming since all of the roll hem feet look the same, this video could be useful if you have another brand of sewing machine. The video instructs to straight stitch the area to be hemmed for a few stitches and then use the long thread tails to position the fabric correctly into the foot before starting to hem. Now, I get perfect hems every time!

Instead of cutting out the ruffle the length the pattern suggests and gathering it, I cut longer lengths of fabric, pieced it together in one long strip, and then I used a gathering foot. It is important to have a little extra length of fabric to work when using a gathering foot because it may gather the fabric a little tighter than the way the pattern was designed. Also, you have less control in easing out the fullness if the gathers are too tight. For this skirt, the finished ruffle is about half the length of the original length of fabric. I always like to practice with a scrap piece of the fabric I am working on to make sure the foot is gathering the amount that I want it to. I used a 10 inch long piece of scrap seersucker fabric and made adjustments until my finished ruffle was only 5 inches. Fiddling with the machine settings doesn’t take too long, and I prefer it to pulling basting threads because the gathering foot evenly spaces the gathers for me. After I sewed on the ruffle, I cut off the excess amount of fabric that I had gathered so it was the appropriate length. I also topstitched the bottom of the skirt to hold the seam allowance of the ruffle and skirt bottom in place. I think the topstitching gives the skirt a ready-to-wear look.

McCalls 7606 Wrap Skirt seersucker

Mccalls 7606 seersucker wrap skirt

I paired this skirt with the Nettie Bodysuit I made by Closet Case Patterns. Modifications to the original bodysuit pattern are discussed in this post.

This project ended up coming together quickly with the help of my roll hem and gathering presser feet. Do you have any favorite presser feet or sewing machine attachments that help you save time? Let me know in the comments below.

McCalls 7606 Wrap Skirt Seersucker