Bernadette And The Forgotten Tweed

Like every decent person, I had planned on cleaning my closets during summer holiday. That’s when you do all the things you don’t have time for while working full time and also become a much better person in every way imaginable. So I was going to do lots of yoga and arrange all my property and eat well. But then I got a summer flu and didn’t do much yoga for a week and then I found tweed from the second closet and then I ate frozen pizza. The last one I can’t really explain, sorry.

I originally bought this wool when I was making Colette Patterns Anise jacket*, and the leftovers survived last summer’s move based on both quality and usability. There was almost one meter left (I think, didn’t measure), so I figured I’d be able to use it on something. Like Bernadette from Republique du Chiffon.


I’ve made Bernadette once before -also in grey- and it’s pretty straight forward to make for a jacket: the shell has three pattern pieces, and all the seams are eventually hidden inside the lining. Only hand sewing happens when you close the opening inside sleeve lining, and RDC blog has photo instructions for putting together Michelle jacket which has a very similar lining.

The instructions don’t even mention interfacing any pattern pieces -I think it’s because the sample uses a quilted fabric, so no extra support is needed-, but I opted to use the basic fusible on all facing pieces. My wool is fairly drapey and also prone to flutter and stretch around like it thinks it’s chiffon, so it felt like a good idea to stabilize all edges. It might have become more cardigan-like if I hadn’t, but really, it was pretty difficult to keep all pieces in shape while sewing so I’ll stand behind my decicion.

The cutting phase was a bit of a puzzle but eventually I only cut the two on fold -pieces with a seam in the middle and had some tiny corners missing from seam allowances. Really, nothing makes me happier than not having to store a massive amount of maybe usable scraps after cutting. (Except maybe pizza.) And this went super well in terms of only throwing away the pile you can see above here.

The first time I made Bernadette I cut size 36 based on bust measurement and wanting a loose fitting, shoulder dropping jacket. This time I went down a size, because duh, bust circumference isn’t that essential in a jacket without any kind of closure, and also because I wanted the shoulders more fitted for a change. Otherwise this is sewn completely out of box with no adjustments, and I’m happy with the fit.

When I first tried it on before adding the lining it looked like the most boring grey boxy box ever made, but the nude/beige/champangne/whatever lining completely changed that. I’m kind of whishing that it would be less shiny, but around here you use what Eurokangas happens to offer. They used to have a lovely silk lining in black, white and nude, but that seems to be gone forever now. And I didn’t even want to touch the sweaty synthetic stuff they have in all the colors, so it was either this rayon satin or the other rayon satin with less color options and more shine. However, it looks pretty damn lovely with the tweed, so I’m not going to complain about that any further.

Yeah, I have just managed to move a piece of fabric from my fabric closet to my wardrobe. We happy.

*As a sidenote, the fabric requirements for Anise were way off. Since, you see, I’ve now made two jackets out of the listed amount.


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