The Silk Wrap Coat is back on the dining room table. I think it was that NY Times slideshow about spring coats that jump-started my renewed efforts on the coat, or perhaps it is the fact that spring is flying by and I may miss out on the opportunity to wear the coat this season if I don't get going on it!
Somewhere along the way, I decided to alter the pattern so I could have six bound buttonhole closures instead of the two snap closures called for in the pattern. Here's a line drawing of the pattern:
To do this, I redrew the roll line on the coat fronts to accommodate a set of buttons higher than the original ones and then added another set below the original ones. I decided to get a bit fancy this time and made my buttonholes with wider "lips" than I have in the past. I think the look is pretty cool. Oops --- quick note: the buttonhole on the lower right was the first one I made and I forgot to interface the "lips"!
Some techniques I use for bound buttonholes:
1. I hand-baste the guidelines for my buttonholes, which allows me to see the guidelines on both the correct and wrong sides of the garment. Because this garment is silk, I used a contrast silk thread.
2. Graph paper is great as a guide. I cut out a piece that is the exact width of the buttonhole and is slightly larger than the finished height of the buttonhole. I mark the center line for the actual buttonhole opening and then mark the other guidelines. There are five lines that are marked: the two outermost lines are guides for the outer boundaries of the buttonhole; the next two lines on either side of the center line are the sewing lines to form the "lips" of the buttonhole; and the center line is the actual opening. I usually just tape the graph paper to the wrong side of the garment (just regular scotch tape down the middle of the paper) to hold it in place.
3. On the correct side of the garment, I pin a square of fabric that will form the "lips" of the buttonhole, centering it on the basted center line of the buttonhole. Back on the wrong side, I machine baste the center and outermost lines, using the graph paper as a guide. Then I go back to the correct side and press each edge of the fabric toward the center line (the outermost basted lines are the guide for this).
4. Turn back to the wrong side and stitch the two lines that flank the center line, being very careful to stitch the exact length of the graph paper. Precision is key for this.
5. Remove the graph paper and tape. Remove the basted threads. Make a small cut through the center of the buttonhole, between the two stitched lines, and then cut diagonally toward each end of the stitched lines to form triangles at both ends of the buttonhole. Precision is key for cutting the triangles.
6. Turn to the correct side and flip the fabric through the cut edges and to the wrong side, pulling the triangles to the back. This forms the lips. Press from the wrong side and stitch the triangles down.
Me Made May 2013
1 hour ago