I started this suit back in February when it would have been very wearable and not shivery weather like now (coldest May in 40 years for Sydney), and I came very close to finishing it in a relatively short time. But for some reason I stopped at the point of press stud jacket closures and taking in / lining the skirt. There was so little left to do that I can't believe it took me so long to get here! Anyway, I got around to finishing the jacket one evening last week, and yesterday I finished off the skirt.
All along I have loved this suit, but I was quite worried about messing it up, especially in the final steps - which is where I typically mess up. I didn't this time, and I absolutely love the finished suit. I think it's a really interesting jacket shape - I love that it *makes* a waist, and accentuates shoulders. If I saw this shape of jacket in a shop I would really be drawn to try it on.
It also feels quite an achievement to have made a proper work suit!
The story of the suit - a series of fortunate events
Back in the first week of February this year, first week back at school, saying bye in the playground, I ran into a friend. She was wearing a gorgeous dark grey linen suit with raglan sleeves, a peplum with foldover details and I think also deep pleats in the bodice and skirt. It looked so flattering and unusual that I found myself really wishing I had one like it, to the point of nearly emailing her to ask where she'd bought it. I even went looking in the shops near my office - but I didn't find it. When I realised this Vogue pattern was rather similar I was just delighted. I ordered the pattern, and popped along to the linen sale at The Fabric Store in Sydney on the off chance. Surprisingly I found a very similar looking fabric (DKNY stretch linen). No excuses left, I got cracking on my copycat suit!
Here's the pattern envelope picture of the V8718 suit jacket and skirt - it's one of those very useful wardrobe builder patterns, so there are also pants, top and dress patterns included.
Fitting and sewing a suit
I was such a keen bean that I didn't stop to make a muslin or even check measurements - just ploughed ahead with a straight size 14, widened a little at waist and hips. This crazy fast start caused my only real fit issue - I should have made a small bust adjustment and removed a little depth from the front bodice. Otherwise the jacket fits well, albeit with raglan shoulder pads to create shoulders...
|Fit seems OK at the back too!|
Feel free to let me know if you think it is particularly noticeable as it wouldn't be too hard to change, and I'm unlikely to be able to wear this for a while now that we're in winter weather here in Sydney...
There's some hand-sewing on the inside to attach the bodice lining to the peplum - here's a view looking inside the jacket. I used large black snaps, sewn on with top stitching thread (probably unorthodox). I didn't use any of Sherry's RTW tips because I came close to finishing this jacket before starting the RTW sewalong... which I have not yet completed :-(.
If you're on the other side of the globe and contemplating this as a summer suit, I can highly recommend it - so long as you're OK with having more than the usual number of pieces to cut out for the jacket. The pattern is very straightforward and the pieces go together well, and they make a really distinctive suit.
Audrey mentioned in the comments below that this pattern was an exact copy of an Akris designer jacket, so I went image searching - and sure enough it is! So here's the Akris original in two different colours: