1920's-inspired kimono coat
Added Feb 27, 2012
I’ve been meaning to share this project for a while now, so here goes…
I don’t know ‘bout you, but I just adore the coats of the 1920’s. What I really love about them is the simplicity of the shapes (an obvious influence from Japanese kimonos) – nice big sleeves, asymmetry of closures, big button detailing, squarish body. I had a design in my head that was much inspired by these 20’s coats that I wanted to experiment with. I was going for simplicity, as with the classic 20’s shape, but wanted to extend this to fabric choices and colours as well. So the op shop trawl uncovered a good amount of run-of-the-mill grey tracky dacks fabric (fleecy on the inside), as well as a smallish remnant of FLURO red ribbed knit. It looks like fluro orange, but it is very much the hottest, most intense red you have ever seen. I didn’t think fluro extended beyond the traditional orange-pink- yellow-green until I’d seen this fabric!!! Aaaanyway…
Seeing as I was going for big simple shapes, I decided to draft the pattern for this myself. It was fairly simple to work out and the tricky bits were finished via draping. Not too difficult a process, but there will be some changes for next time, e.g. I’d make a slightly deeper neckline at the front where the collar attaches, as well as adding facing to the front of the coat so that it keeps its shape (at the moment we’re getting a bit of curling and stretching). This was really an experiment initially, so there’s still a bit of room to add the changes later down the track. Another interesting feature for future could be the subtle addition of a pocket in either of the red parts of the sleeve. I just read ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ by Margaret Atwood, where the main character’s red full sleeved gown also conceals a pocket in the sleeve, and I just loved the idea.
I’m quite pleased with the overall result in terms of shape – the red bias binding outlines the shape of the front so nicely. I used press studs to hold the coat closed at the collar and at various points down the front. I found the button on the ground at a train station and thought it would be a great way to finish the pointed top section. Also, I used a triangular bound buttonhole, just to try something different [photo to be added!]. The tutorial for this can be found here: http://thesewingdivas.wordpress.com/2007/03/29/bound-buttonhole-triangular-shape/
The other red accessories are two of my absolute favourite wardrobe goodies. Both are luuurvely vintage pieces and their colour matches the button on the coat more so that the fluro ribbed sections.
fleecy tracksuit fabric, fluro red ribbed knit, red bias binding, red found fabric button