A Nautical Victoria Blazer

Sunday, June 08, 2014

Hello there! I don't know about over in your neck of the woods but here in Indiana it's been raining cats and dogs for the past couple of weeks. I've been anxiously waiting for the weather to let up so I could get pictures of my next make for the Fabricista blog, The Victoria Blazer.

Picture 1

I'm calling this my captain's jacket only because my smart assey husband says AHOY Captain! and gives me a salute every time I walk in the room with it on.  Maybe this will work in my favor and I can get him to start obeying some orders! :)


A casual blazer with 3/4 length sleeves that have french seamed cuffs so you can wear them up or down. The jacket variations are full length, cropped and sleeveless.  The design is casual and laid back so there is a generous amount of ease which makes for a very easy fit.

Pattern:  Paper pattern available here for around $23.53 USD
Fabric:   The pattern calls for a light to medium weight woven fabric with some body such as
cotton, linen, chambray, denim, tweed, etc. Ponte or double knits are also good options. I used a
slightly stretchy vertical striped cotton sateen from Julie's Picks last month. I like to live on the wild
side so I cut my fabric on the crosswise grain to end up with horizontal stripes. Before I got all cut
happy I took a couple of things into consideration first...
#1 - Stretch...The fabric had absolutely no give on the crosswise grain. Stretch would of been a big contender if the jacket style was more fitted but it's not so I wasn't worried about it.
#2 - Drape...I knew cutting against the grain would affect the drape and in effect cause some fit problems. I was confident I could work those out so I got to cutting.
There is also a lightweight lining involved. I used a seafoam green cotton poplin from the stash.
Notions: Time and energy...I used about a couple hours each night after work.  I had the jacket
                completed by the weekend.

Picture 2

Fitting/Construction:  Ok let's get down to the nitty gritty!  Again because of the oversized fit of the jacket I was convinced fitting would be a breeze.  Still though I made a muslin to be sure.  The shoulder seams drooped a little too far past my shoulders for my liking.  I shortened those by 1/2 inch.  I also had to shorten the sleeves by 2 inches...I have some short arms.   

The pattern instructions/illustrations were very clear and easy to follow.  BHL also has a sewalong over on their website if your like me and need a little extra hand holding.  Hey nothing wrong with that!

When I arrived to the point where the jacket shell was completely assembled I seen where cutting on the crosswise grain was affecting the drape.  You can see in the picture below how the back balloons out A LOT.  To correct this I added two back darts, 6 inches in length and 1 inch wide.

Picture 4

The blazer has a partial lining.  The sleeves are not lined and the lining is left unattached at the sleeves.  I found this kind of odd so I followed a few other bloggers and attached my sleeve lining to the sleeve seams.
This also helps to keep the lining from sagging and peeking out at your bottom hem.  You can see below how I attached the lining to the sleeve.  This picture was after I washed the blazer so my pinked seams weren't as pretty and ironed flat as they once were but you get the idea.

Picture 5

I ended up doing two photo shoots.  After going through the pictures from my first shoot I was just not happy with the way the back of the blazer was still ballooning out.  Ok ok I wasn't happy with my hair either but that's a whole nother story!  I had already washed it once hoping it would soften up and fall into place (the blazer, not my hair) so I got out my seam ripper and re did the back darts.  I lengthened them another 2 inches making a total of 8 inches in length and widened them another inch each for a total of 2 inches in width.  I think it was an improvement.  You decide...

Picture 6

If casual and laid back is your style then this pattern has your name written all over it.  I'm more of a fitted jacket kind of gal however with my shoulder/sleeve alterations and the body of my fabric I think I found a nice balance between the two.  I would/will make this pattern again and opt for the full length style.  I love how cool and chic Victoria herself looks in the vest styled over a cute little black dress.

Picture 3

 I never know what to do with that dang camera remote!!

picture 8

Picture 7

What's your favorite blazer pattern?  Since this is my first time ever using a BHL pattern I'm going to enter this over at The Monthly Stitch in the Indie Pattern Month, "New to Me" sewing contest.
Look for that post in a couple days.

Oh and I'm a total copycat.  It's Sally's fault though :)

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  1. I LOVE that with the stripes. I never would have thought of stripes for this blazer. Looks amazing!!

  2. What a great look! I'm also more of a "fitted jacket kind of gal", but this looks really flattering too :)

  3. Gold stars for an audacious and perfect fit! I love this on you, and if you ever decide to stow away on an eighteenth century galleon you have the perfect outfit! ;-)

  4. With all this rain that might happen sooner than later! ;)

  5. After seeing Sally's version and seeing tons of striped blazers on Pinterest I knew I had to make it happen!

  6. So very nautical! I can see this jacket going with many things.

  7. I absolutely love it. The back darts especially worked out well. Thanks for sharing the pics to compare the before and after alterations.

  8. That is fantastic on you! Great idea on the back darts, too. (Although I thought it just had a bit more of a swing jacket fit that way, but I know that's now what you were going for.) The stripes are perfect, so I can totally see why you were inspired by Sally's jacket to do the same! I bet you'll get a lot of wear out of it.

    Btw, in the first photo at a glance, I totally thought you were standing by our garage (where I often stand for photos). lol!

  9. This is majorly cute! I love the stripes! I love this pattern and shape, although I haven't made the cropped style. I think the way you modified the swing looks great on you! Also, your husband cracks me up. :)

  10. I've been wondering how this would look with darts in the back, and I think it helps a lot, especially on the cropped version. I think I probably need to shorten my shoulder seam as well, after looking at this. Did you do anything different with the sleeve cap, or was it as simple as removing length from the shoulder seam?

  11. Yes! After wearing it a few times I do love it!

  12. Very lovely, and those back darts work really well with you. I am more of a fitted jacket girl myself, but this design is really lovely

  13. This looks so awesome on you!! And I'm super flattered that you copied mine :) nice idea adding back darts too! You will get tons of wear out of this over the summer!

  14. Cute jacket! It is on my list and I love the fabric and shaping you did.

  15. Thanks! It's a great jacket. You'll love it!

  16. Gorgeous jacket Captain!! Oh husbands....they think they so funny! Great jacket Shanni, I love a nautical look! The addition of the back darts are perfect.

  17. Ooh excellent work with the darts. I think it looks great a bit more nipped in. And that pic with the remote in your mouth should be your new avatar Hehehe.

  18. This is so cute! I like the adjustments you made, but man, you've got some serious patience to go back and fix it after finishing it completely. I hardly ever manage to do that!