Hey, guys! Gals too, but for this posts sake I’m referring to you men out there- looking for an incredibly durable, long lasting, water resistant, and dare I say manly outerwear jacket? The Albion jacket pattern paired with Bolt’s new addition of solid colored, water resistant, army duck canvas and wooden toggles is all of the above. You can wear it while fishing out at sea, chopping up firewood, or use it as a tent if you get stranded out in the wilderness during a rainstorm! In all seriousness though, this jacket is the equivalent of an affordable, fashion forward Carhart jacket.
I must admit, the sewing process is pretty ambitious, so know beforehand I did warn you.
Be prepared with:
Heavy Duty needles
-I used the Jeans Schmetz needles we sell at the store, they work like a charm.
A large sewing table, etc.
-To help hold the weight of the canvas while sewing
Possibly an arm brace if you are using a basic home sewing machine
-For the sake of my machine I hand-walked over the thicker seams, which is about half of them
Lots of patience!
-They don’t lie when they say “Invest some time” on the cover of the pattern
Things to keep in mind before sewing:
Sizing! I made this jacket for my sweetie who is on average an XL according to his body measurements; however, I made the mistake of not checking the finished garment measurements. Needless to say, it came out quite extra, extra large. Colette patterns do encourage that you make a muslin sample and alter the pattern to size, which I would highly recommend doing, and again go by the finished garment measurements instead of the body measurements. My XL guy could easily fit into the M pattern. Just sayin’.
One major thing I noticed while cutting out the pattern is that there was quite a bit of fabric left over. I figured this is probably just incase you make a mistake. However, considering the canvas that the pattern calls for is definitely worth its weight, and the amount left over, although more than I’d like to have left over, could maybe only make a small bag or pouch, you may also like to make a muslin to see exactly how much fabric you really need.
The Albion jacket, even if not made perfectly to size does stand up to the elements and whatever you throw at it (trust me). Although I recently made this jacket, I know it will have a long life. I had to hammer, throw, and stomp on the canvas to make it a smidgen bit easier to sew around the armhole and other curved or thick seams. If you have any pent up stress consider this jacket your tailored punching bag! On the bright side, like I mentioned earlier, you can wear it out to sea, use it as a tent, or even as a casual biking jacket. With time the canvas will eventually lose most of its rigidity and the jacket will take on a “softer” drape, such as broken-in jeans.
As with most outerwear, this jacket pattern is unisex, so ladies please make one for you too! The whole family even! The extra fabric could maybe be used for a small animal? Also try experimenting with different closures, such as buttons, or other toggles that we carry at the store; the pattern also has an exerpt on how to make your own toggles.There are two versions of the Albion: Version 1is a coat with lining, hood tie, and patch pockets, Version 2is the jacket (which I made) that has side inseam pockets, flat-felled seams, and bias tape seam finishing. Just make sure to keep in mind my advice, maybe do some yoga or meditating beforehand, take lots of breaks, and once finished go roll down a hill in the rain in this jacket. It is definitely a North West friendly clothing staple.
I’m so excited to let you know we have gorgeous Merino wool knit back in stock! It’s gorgeous and we don’t know how long it will last, so you may just want to stop by sooner than later…
Other knits have arrived as well, including more of that fabulous cotton blend sweatshirt knit. Super cozy. And we’re restocked with colors of soy blend knit and soy blend terry knit. Perfect for leggings, or that great drop pocket cardigan Heather wrote about here.
Other new arrivals include these lovely Japanese prints (top pic) and new colors, including metallic, of Lizzy House’s “pearl bracelet” print. Pretty, pretty.
See you soon!
You may just find yourself saying super quite often while making this.
The details are what makes this bag super.
There is a pleated gusset, zipper closure, multiple elasticized, segmented inside pockets and a giant outside pocket with a magnetic closure. Sounds like a lot of work but this bag is pretty straight forward to put together.
Most of the details are optional if you are looking for a basic, nice shaped bag. The large outer pieces do offer the opportunity to highlight a nice big print if that is your style. I was trying to make a not too girlie version of this bag. I could see it being a good mid sized diaper bag.
The main challenge of mine before starting this project was picking the right weight of fabric. The directions recommend that if you are using quilting weight fabric to add a layer of canvas between the inner and outer pieces. If one uses a heavy weight fabric on the outside no need for the extra layer. I did eventually just pick what I liked and did not worry about the weights. I went with a heavier option for the gusset and half of my straps. The outer pocket, shown above I originally had planned on using a quilting weight. I made a mistake somewhere in cutting, the layout was tight. I ended up using a scrap from my other fabric to make it work. A happy accident!
I mixed weights of fabric. The heavy weight fabric is a crosshatch from Alexander Henry. The quilting weight fabric is from Parson Grey’s Vagabond line, called “Souk” in a night sky color way. The lining I would call a medium weight it is a crossweave from Moda.
The pattern also gives some suggestions for interfacing. As per usual I opted to use stacey shapeflex as my main interfacing. I also wanted to try out craft fuse (the pattern calls for either or). I used craft fuse for the gusset in the lining piece. I really had a hard time working with it because it was so stiff. Looking back the craft fuse really helped this bag keep it’s shape. I would opt to interface a few pieces of the lining that were not called for in the pattern if I were to make it again, and mix weights of fabric.
Stop in, check it out and make your own super tote!