Thread Theory

Welcome to the new era of menswear sewing. Go ahead and create something exceptional!


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Calling all Peacoat Test Sewers!

Matt gave you a sneak peak of my big peacoat project earlier this week and now, here is the full gallery of photos that resulted from a quick photo shoot with his dad, Rick!

This is the final size medium sample of the Goldstream Peacoat pattern which is now being graded by Sabine over at Suncoast Custom while I work away on the instructions.

As you can see, the pea coat pattern will include an attractive (I think!) combination of classic and modern (read: easy to sew) details.  We’ve included epaulets and sleeve tabs as well as traditional top-stitched pointed lapels but we’ve forgone the tricky welt pockets to instead include unconventional but very easy to sew patch pockets with optional flaps.  The pattern includes a hood which is sewn as a completely separate piece from the coat so as not to complicate the classic pea-coat shape.  During really awful weather the hood can be buttoned to the hidden under-collar buttons so the wearer can stay completely dry and warm.  There  is a center back seam as well as optional front darts (which were not used for the version pictured here) so that the fit of the body is very easy to adjust.  If the darts are sewn in, the fit is very slim and modern (perfect for all the tall slim men who have been loving the fit of our Newcastle Cardigan!) but if they are left un-sewn the fit is as photographed here – a nicely fitted classic peacoat.

Now that things are drawing to a close with the production of the pea coat pattern (finally! You have all been so patient with us while we tackled this huge pattern project!) we are ready to assemble a list of pea coat test sewers.

For each of our other pattern releases we simply sent an email out to our existing test sewing group.  All these people have volunteered to be added to the list either through our website or blog and have been so enthusiastic and helpful each time we require test sewers.  For this pattern, though, we would like to accept new volunteers to add to our existing group in hopes of finding three test sewers with as much coat sewing and general tailoring experience as possible.

If you would like to be added to our test-sewing list for this particular project, comment on this blog post (and we will email you to ask for details on your sewing experience), or skip that step and email us directly (info@threadtheory.ca) with either a small write-up detailing your experience or links to online records of relevant projects (be it a blog post, a flickr pool or facebook photos etc.).  Keep in mind that this is quite a big test sewing project and will need to be completed in a time frame of approximately three weeks from when we send you the pattern.  As we expect to send the pattern out to testers within the next two weeks, this means that you will need to devote a good portion of time to sewing the coat this November.  Any test sewers who are already on our mailing list need not re-volunteer as we will send out our usual email once the pattern is ready to send out and you can volunteer for the project at that point!

Thanks for volunteering!


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Special Delivery!

What’s that, you want another sneaky Wednesday post from Matt full of hints of things to come?

You got it.

First up, an itty-bitty box full of brown paper!

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That’s right, after being an incorporated business for 10 months and selling our product for 5 months (jeeeez, has it only been 5 months?!), we finally got around to ordering business cards! They were designed by the lovely and incredibly talented Sonia Bishop (who also designed our logo) and printed by ClubCard printing out of Vancouver, BC. They are a vertical design done in plain black and white ink on 24pt natural kraft paper. And we love them.

Next up are some significantly larger boxes. 6 of them, to be exact, weighing in at a total of 180 lbs.

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That’s right, tissue patterns! Our first three patterns have arrived and they look GREAT! We knew it was going to be a pretty big load, but we had NO idea how much space 3,000 packets of tissue paper would take up. Turns out it’s a lot; Morgan is currently painting our closets so we can have everything looking pretty and organized for a later photoshoot. And they are HEAVY! Step 1 of going to print: Complete.

Now for some Goldstream Peacoat action: Morgan has finished the second prototype of the pattern, and it turned out beautifully!

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There are still a couple tiny changes to be made before it is graded and prettied up, but we’re getting close! More details coming soon…

Last, but certainly not least, there is a super-secret project that Morgan and I are working on. I can’t say much more about it other than one of our previous posts contained a photo hint (remember a cardboard box?). It is involving quite a bit of planning and logistics, but we’re VERY excited to show you once it’s ready!

Thanks for stopping by, and remember to follow our blog for updates!


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Sue’s Spectacular Jeds!

My mother-in-law, Sue, has been quietly working away on her own version of the Jedediah Pants and blew us out of the water when her husband, Rick, arrived for Thanksgiving dinner in the absolutely spectacular results! She used a high-end cotton twill from Gala Fabrics in Victoria, BC and carefully applied all the lessons that she learned by following our sew-along. We took a few photos that day of Rick wearing the finished version, and Sue graciously sent in some of her own as well as a review so that we could show you her very successful return to the sewing world after a several decade hiatus! Without further ado, here is what she wrote to us:

Hi Morgan and Matt,

I just wanted to send a note to let you know about my experience with sewing the Jedediah pants. I noticed a few people who commented on your blog about being a bit afraid to take on what seems to be a more difficult project, and I thought my experience might help sway them to give it a try.

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I have not sewn an article of clothing since I made my high school graduation dress in the 1970s… Don’t bother doing the math, suffice it to say that was a long time ago! I never took any formal sewing training, but was just taught by my mom and through my own experimentation. Your enthusiasm for sewing and designing has been infectious and has inspired me to pick it up again, and it was the sew-a-long that gave me the confidence to get started back again. One would think that pants would be a tough project to wet your feet with, but in reality, with the well fitting pattern, great instructions, the video for the fly installation, the feedback from the sewers, and the ability to write in and ask questions, it was amazingly simple.

I wasn’t able to start the pants until well after the sew-a-long was finished but that had it’s benefits, as I was able to read all the instructions, comments and feedback before even cutting out my material and was therefore able to incorporate the suggestions that others had made. I actually started out to make shorts, but when I laid the pattern out, I had so much material left, I thought why not see if I had enough for pants, and sure enough I did. I know you made the comment that the allowances were generous to allow for pattern matching, and this worked to my benefit, as I had no pattern.

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I used Katie’s method of sewing the back patch pockets to eliminate the raw edge inside, and I added my own touch by interfacing the pocket to give it a little more strength. I sewed the inseam before the side seam, as this made more sense to me. I’m glad I did this, as I had a little trouble with the flat felled seams. The material I used was an organic twill and it really wanted to fray, so folding it over and sewing with the smaller seam allowance was a little fiddley. If I had done the leg seams in the reverse order, I would have had to do “fake flat felled seams” as you had suggested when I wrote in. They would have looked the same, but I would know they were fake. Also, I didn’t use seam binding as I thought it would become too bulky (and because I was too lazy), but I am still happy with the finish of the pants. If I made them again, I might be tempted to bind just the inner waistband as I like the finished look of the ones I’ve seen.

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I found the pattern pieces really fit together well. The only markings that didn’t make sense to me were on the ends of the waistband, but then I figured, as long as I had enough room for a seam at each end of the waistband, there wasn’t a problem, and it all went together well. The fly went in without a hitch, just by following step by step, the video and written instructions. The most difficult part of the pants was the buttonhole. I did several test buttonholes that came out beautifully of course, and then the real one was not so good. I think it was because of the bulk of the waistband seam, that my auto buttonholer on my old machine couldn’t hold the material firm enough to keep it correctly aligned. I will do as you suggested and use a hook closure, and hubby always wears a belt, so no one will be the wiser.

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The pants seemed to sew up quite quickly (even though it took me about a month overall as I was only able to pick them up for little bits at a time) and I was able to break the project easily into manageable pieces. I am really pleased (and hubby is too) with the overall result, and I must say that this is the first article of clothing that I have ever sewn that looks store bought, and fits extremely well. I will most certainly be testing out more of your patterns in the future, and I think the men in my life will be quite happy about that!

– Sue

Congratulations, Sue, on an excellently finished garment! We look forward to seeing your versions of the rest of our patterns!

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And the winner is…

Flats for blog

Congratulations to deadlycraft who was randomly chosen from the 40 (wow, 40!!!!) amazing comments left on our Goldstream Peacoat contest post throughout the week.  We hope you enjoy sewing up our peacoat pattern once it has been released!

Thank you, everyone, SO MUCH for providing us with such a wealth of information!  I have many happy hours of sewing related research ahead of me.  I especially took note of the tailoring books a few of you mentioned.  And, I agree with the many of you who mentioned Peter Lappin’s amazing blog…it is a huge wealth of menswear sewing information and inspiration!

Now that the contest is over, have a look at what all your comments created: The official Encyclopedia Peacoatica!  I hope everyone will find it helpful once they embark on their big peacoat sewing project!  It will be a permanent fixture in our blog sidebar along with our Jedediah Sew-Along and the other pages we have created.

Since a post isn’t a proper post without some inspiring pictures, here are a couple great projects we’ve seen around the sewing corner of the internet lately:

Newcastle cardigan Lilly

Lilly’s polished looking navy Newcastle Cardigan…I just love it, I think this is my favorite version I have seen yet!

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Huff’s awesome red Jeds. I love that she calls them that! We call the Strathcona Henley Strath…so here is Huff’s Strath and Jeds outfit. She is planning to make twelve entire outfits for her husband. Wow, what an undertaking!

Also, Nichola, over at Handmaker’s Factory, is hosting a giveaway of the Jedediah Pants and Shorts sewing pattern.  If anyone hasn’t purchased it yet, now is your chance to enter to win the pattern.  Comment on her blog post before Friday October 18th for your chance to win.


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Goldstream Peacoat Contest!

Happy Friday, blog world! Welcome to a made-by-Matt special post!

Our world in the Thread Theory studio has been focused entirely around peacoats lately, so this week we wanted to immerse you in a bit of the inspiration behind the Goldstream Peacoat pattern that we are chugging away at! I think there is no outerwear, for men, more classic yet versatile as the standard issue navy peacoat. The history of the British Navy peacoat is fuzzy at best; there are many stories as to how it got the name and where it was first issued, but there is one thing for certain: The dense navy-blue wool double-breasted coat kept those sailors warm!

The double-breasted front keeps the wind at bay (pun DEFINITELY intended), while the collar can be popped up and buttoned straight across the neck for the ultimate protection from the elements. The slightly shorter body was designed to allow for sailors to easily climb rigging while wearing the coat. This means that even in a nicely fitted jacket, sailors had full range of motion.

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(http://www.sehkelly.com/shop/jackets/tobacco-brown-wool-tweed-peacoat/)

 

Morgan and I are crazy busy with moving (we got the keys to our new place yesterday!) so this post is going to be short, sweet, and full of eye-candy! Morgan is currently in the midst of (hopefully) the final test-version of our pattern in a black wool with pea-green lining. She hasn’t decided yet whether to do gold, pewter, or black “fouled anchor” buttons (the anchor wrapped up in line); we’ll keep you posted!

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(http://fashionablethings.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/12/81_nordstrom-theory-peacoat.jpg)

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(http://i.nordstromimage.com/images/Store/blog/men/2012/9_10/peacoat_sure_bets_fall_catalog6.jpg)

Like I said earlier, this is a short one! Our internet is getting hooked up tomorrow, which means I’m posting this using a mystery neighbour’s connection (sorry! We really can’t miss a Friday post!) which is spotty, to say the least. We’ll be adding more photos once we’re plugged in!

This week, we would like you to comment on this blog post with your favourite tailoring, traditional menswear sewing, or jacket-related sewing techniques and resources! If your comment is relevant, we will enter you in a draw to win the Goldstream Peacoat pattern (or another pattern of your choice) once it has been released! The draw will close by next Friday, October 11th, and the winner will be announced in our weekly blog post! We hope to use your favourite resources (be them on-line classes, on-location classes, books, blogs, YouTube videos, or a technique of yours that you explain) to compile a Goldstream Peacoat sewing encyclopedia on our blog.

Thank you in advance for all of your great suggestions! Feel free to suggest something even if you haven’t tried it yourself as Morgan will be investigating anything that is mentioned.