That didn’t take all that long, but it did take some concentration! Just before I started, I decided to interface the coat front, and then had some issues with it bubbling a bit. Gah! Fortunately, it’s a good quality woven fusible, and is fairly amenable to being pulled off and re positioned. It’s far from perfect, but the bubbling does not show at all on the right side, so what she doesn’t know won’t hurt her!
A reminder, I’m using Ann Ladbury’s 1967 instructions on making piped buttonholes. These come out very narrow, and seem less cumbersome than bound buttonholes. Maybe it’s just me, but bound buttonholes tend to look very clunky on thick fabrics…
Anyway, the practice one worked fine, but frayed like hell. The strips you use to make the ‘lips’ of the buttonhole are a scant 1/2″ wide, then folded to 1/4″. Fiddly? Oh yes. In the video, she uses a double sided fusible tape to glue the strips neatly in half, but I have no idea if it, or anything like it is available any more, so I just fused a piece of wool to thin interfacing, cut to size, and pressed in half. I managed not to steam my fingers this time.
You then mark your buttonholes, and baste two of the folded strips against the chalk line, raw edges butted up together. Then you machine down the middle of each strip, keeping to the length of the marked buttonhole. I buggered a couple of these up, as I couldn’t see the black stitching on charcoal grey very well. It worked in the end though.
I then removed the first basting, and cut the buttonholes open. I found these much easier to turn through than bound ones, where you have to faff to get the folds right.
Another baste to hold them closed, and ready for pressing.
Repeat 6 times.
The coat front is now pinned to the ironing board to set, as it was determined to go all wrinkly and waffly. That’s wool for you!
Done! Sorry about the fuzzy photos, I didn’t realise and can’t be bothered to re-do. Bad Fairy.
I’ve decided to use squares of silk organza to make faced openings on the back. I will do some hand stitching first though, firstly to secure those annoying little cut triangles at the end of the buttonholes, and secondly to neaten the inside a little in case of future fraying.
Let’s see how tired I am after work tomorrow- this may have to wait til the weekend now!
PS. Anyone know what’s happend to The Stitcher’s Guild /Artisans Square website? I’ve not been able to get on and do a SWAP post for several days…