Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Butterick 5891 - the jacket

Between travel and hanging out with the grands, I've had little time for much sewing. But I always sew. And if I'm not sewing, I'm thinking about sewing. You know how it is.

So I finally had a full day to myself, just as we prepare for a vacation. It's fun to make something just for a particular trip. But it can also be a disaster. I get in a hurry, don't think about what I'll really wear, make something I don't particularly like, and then pack all the old stuff.

Not this time.

I've made the top portion of Butterick 5891 twice - once as a sleeveless top, and once as a knit vest. But I had never made the jacket portion of this Katherine Tilton design. I had seen it made up and worn by a sewing friend who always looks chic. So why did I wait over a year to make this?

It is a winner.

The fabric is allegedly Brussels washer - a rayon/linen blend. But it behaves more like a cotton/linen blend. It washed and dried with a lovely texture, behaves under the steam iron, and sews like a dream, has just the right amount of drape and body for a jacket. And it seems like it will be a great single layer jacket for many occasions. For now, it will mostly serve me on cool nights or with too-cold air conditioning.

So what is there to like about this jacket pattern?

  • Set-in sleeves that sit right at the natural shoulder
  • Princess lines in the front
  • Center back seam for little extra tweak on the fit
  • Funky collar that frames the face
  • Asymmetrical center fronts
  • Handkerchief hem

 And only a few very minor dislikes:

  • No suggestions for finishing seams. And you have to finish the seam edges, I think. I used a mock felled seam treatment throughout.
  • One of those front facings that wants to flop open unless you nail it down with buttons or something. I just tacked mine down for now. No time for buttons.
Next time, I'll definitely extend the cut-on facing to mirror the center front pieces, so that the inside edge of the facing aligns with the princess seam. Not only will it be easier to nail down the facing but it will cover some of the raw edges at the collar.

There will definitely be a next time. I think it will make a wonderful vest for cooler weather.


  1. I got this pattern from the lovely Graca and have yet to make it. It is going on the list for fall. I just love every version that I see. This looks amazing!

  2. Looks fabulous. I need to give that pattern a try. Thanks for the inspiration.

  3. I love your version of this pattern! (I've made it twice now, and really need to get some photos taken so I can blog it.) Your fabric choice is a smart one, and I'm sure this style looks great on you.
    I agree with your suggestion to extend the front facings to the seam lines. That's what I did on my second version, and it worked well.
    Happy vacation!

  4. You and Diane Ericson must be sisters from another mother, she's featuring this pattern on her blog right now also. Very inspiring....

  5. You've done this pattern proud, Martha. I love it, too. I lengthened it once and liked that look.
    Your vest idea is terrific...I'm going to try that!

  6. This is so perfect for you, and inspires me to add it to my fall list.

  7. Beautiful detailing and results! Now I'm inspired to make this one sooner rather than later :)

  8. Wonderful jacket. And thanks for the review on PR; it gives me a chance to see how to interpret this style to make it my own!

  9. Oh, and I had to smile at your comments about traveling....We have been "on the road" more than home this year. I do the same as you. Get all pumped up, make new things and then (for the most part) just pack the same ol' same ol'. We are just about to leave for two months to visit the grands and I am bringing everything!!! Cannot make another decision - so I'm not. Will probably regret it. But perhaps too old for regrets :-)