If you like puzzles, you will love this coat. It’s the Mackinaw Coat by Call Ajaire. It has such a gorgeous outcome. I volunteered to pattern test* because I love the challenge and this was no exception.
Miss 4 picked the fabric of her choice, no surprise there was pink somewhere there, and we went with the “drama” collar. The outer fabric is Koi Canvas multi colour Its a Plus (100% cotton), the lining is hot pink drill (100% cotton) and white faux fur (100% polyester).
This pattern is so well put together and the instructions really thorough. After printing 60 pages of pattern pieces alone, the task of cutting and taping was made easier by the fact everything lined up perfectly. There is also a table included to advise which pages to print for your view of choice.
The other great thing about this pattern is that it is unisex with a slight variation, no pleats for the boys and the choice of a normal collar or a drama collar and goes up from 12 months to 12 years. The pattern calls for bound buttonholes or you can sew normal ones, and the little addition of a hanging loop give this quite a high end finish and optional pocket flaps. It’s possible to really personalise this as you wish.
When you first get to reading through instructions, realising there are over 150 steps may be a daunting task for some. Let me explain this is due to the fact that the instructions are really thorough and literally walk you through a full bagged lining, optional bound button holes and immaculate attention to detail, step by step. The back belt loop is part of the back bodice, the drop shoulders are such to allow room for layering and also emmulate being wrapped in a cozy blanket and the front pocket openings are in the waist seam.
My coat turned out a bit big for my daughter but I am not concerned. Winter is 6 months away and she will be layering underneath no doubt, so I say it was perfect. The pockets are a great addition, which child doesn’t love having pockets to put treasures in. I would suggest to just measure your childs’ arm length to ensure you get the right sleeve length.
After minimal final pattern modification I made miss 2 one as well but went with grey faux fur this time, a wiser choice to hide it being dirty. I went up a size from her measurements as I would love if she got at least 2 seasons from it. The outer fabric is Buzoku duck pink fluoro small spot (100% cotton), hot pink drill (100% cotton) for the lining, and grey faux fur (80% acrylic/ 20% polyester) for the “drama” collar. She is far less co-operative for photos.
Second time around things went together much quicker, this is not a fast sew by any means though. I went with bound buttonholes again and they were much neater, probably as I had more confidence this time around and had additional interfacing pattern pieces (a new addition to the pattern).
It’s so nice to have a clean finished garment. My daughters are all set for the winter months. Maybe I should start thinking about my winter wardrobe a bit more.
This coat requires time, patience and concentration but I think it’s worth it. Materials for each coat were about $50AUD but in my opinion I’ve ended up with a designer, one off, lined, faux collar coat that would have cost a lot more to buy. I know the quality of the fabric, workmanship and love that has gone into them and I’m sure they will last for a few years.
If you join the Designs by Call Ajaire Facebook group you will get a special coupon code to get a discount when you purchase this coat through Etsy up until the 21st February, 2016. There is also a sew-along scheduled to start 23rd February, 2016 on the Call Ajaire blog if you think this is too daunting.
*The pattern was provided to me free of charge for testing but all opinions expressed are my own and I received a copy of the finalised pattern for taking part.