Variation on a Keshy Theme

Posted by admin | Filed under New Patterns & Kits, Patterns, Sewing Savvy, Techniques | Feb 16, 2010 | Tags: , , , | Comments Off

A while back we went to a wonderful Indian restaurant for dinner (we’re vegetarians), and afterwards I wandered into a small gift shop. I swear, I started hyperventilating: Fabric – gorgeous Sari fabric…  racks of it! Full cuts for a complete Sari; I didn’t know where to start looking.

Christmas came for me very early that night.

I finally settled on a 6-yard Georgette fabric piece. Rich golds, reds, deep purple, emerald green with a color-matching embossed pattern. There was also a small design of loose, gold threads scattered over the main fabric piece. It has a crisp, very lightweight feel to it and I knew it was going to be a pain to sew – who cared!

Later I sat on the floor in the middle of the sewing room grinning like a idiot, with yards of fabric wrapped on and over me. What to do, what to do….  I’d been wanting to make another Keshy jacket, and this would be perfect… but…  let’s play!

I decided to modify the lower front of the pattern with only 1 simple change – but the end result was amazing. Here is the journey with step-by-step photos. Some are quite large to show more detail.

Laying out the prepared front pattern piece for the Keshy jacket.

The pattern piece is cut apart at the dividing line, and seam allowances added to both sides. I use 1/2" seam allowances on all main seams.

Divide the lower front section into three equal parts. Mark it only.

Now cut on the dividing lines up to - but not through the edge of the added seam allowance. Spread the pieces as wide as you like.

Place tracing paper, tissue paper, or pattern drafting media under the pattern and tape all open areas together securely.

Decide on the design, and even up your bottom edge. I didn't want a completely curved edge, so it has a bit sharper angles.

Modified pattern piece has been cut out of that gorgeous fabric and I'm apply a decorate double facing to the front, center section.

The decorative facing on the front 'skirting' - I don't know what else to call it, it looks like a skirt to me :)

And here's a close up of the edge. I took the piece from another section of the Sari fabric. It was perfect for this placement.

Now for the upper front piece and a different decorative facing. Again, a beautiful panel from the Sari fabric that was tailor made for this usage.

Close up view of the band/facing section attached and the second strip cut and ready for the other front panel.

Here is one of the fronts – both top and skirt attached using a French seam. What I didn’t do – because it really was a design choice for me – was not re-true or straighten the front panels before attaching the front facings and/or band pieces.

The original Keshy jacket has a straight line front, this version as you can see, angles back in after the seam join.

It’s strictly a design choice. I could have straightened it when I opened the ’skirt’, I chose not to. You can choose to!  :)

Upper and 'skirt' sections of Keshy front attached using a French seam.

Here is the piece of fabric I used to center the back of the jacket on. Did I mention that this Sari fabric was gorgeous?

Added the interfaced, neck facing with the help of my assistant Molly. I used a lightweight fusible tricot for any interfacing.

The front and back joined at the shoulders with a French seam, and the facing tacked into place. All seams were French seams - it's a clean, finished look.

A closeup of the finished shoulder seam and facing placement.

Note: I did not sew the sides together until the last step. Because the front bottom has a separate facing/finish and the back bottom a different one, the sides had to be left to the end.

Bias-cut facing for the bottom of the 'skirt' - pinned with lots and lot of pins to hold everything still for sewing. The fabric slid everywhere!

Another view with my able assistant helping.

Closeup of the front bottom facing on its final stage: pin, sew, remove pins, press, turn, press, pin, sew, remove pins, press. Repeat for other side!

After this I did a simple facing/binding on the sleeve area – or lack of sleeve actually – then finished the side seams. It’s gorgeous!

Here's a full front view of the finished Keshy variation jacket. A completely different look!

Closeup of the front - apologies to cropped out model Sally. Yes my mannequin has a name.

The back with the same edging on the bottom as I used for the 'skirt' center facing.

Up close with the sleeve binding. I didn't bother with any real sleeve, a binding was all that I felt it needed.

Tighter detail of the joined fronts; I added two decorate buttons and a hair elastic to hold the fronts closed.

And that’s it! One simple change – and stunning fabric of course – and we have a completely different look for our Keshy jacket. I really, really, really love to play!

PS: I used mono-filament thread for the entire jacket – I need new glasses now, but it was soooo worth it!

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