Ginger Made: Houndstooth Victoria Blazer!

Victoria Blazer in Houndstooth Wool by Ginger Makes

Guys, I’ve been watching a LOT of TV lately. A LOT.  I feel like a bit of a couch potato, but it’s totally justified since I work in film and television—it counts as homework, right?


My main obsession lately has been all things BBC- Dr. Who, Torchwood, Luther, and Sherlock, to name a few. All of this led to a sudden, desperate attraction to classic British wool garments—there are only so many times you can see Benedict Cumberbatch swirling around in a fantastic wool coat before you want to wrap yourself in tweed from head to toe!

Victoria Blazer in Houndstooth Wool by Ginger Makes

I picked up this classic wool houndstooth a while ago from Mood Fabrics NYC, but wasn’t quite sure what to do with it. I considered many options—sheath dress, shift dress, jacket, cape—before settling on one of my all-time favorite patterns, the By Hand London Victoria blazer. You can’t go wrong with a houndstooth blazer!

Victoria Blazer in Houndstooth Wool by Ginger Makes

This fabric is really soft and drapey, which worked really well with this pattern. Since it’s meant to be slouchy and casual, nothing is interfaced and there aren’t any facings, which makes this a little quicker to construct than more traditional blazers. It was a breeze to sew and press the fabric, and since the wool is so malleable, setting in the sleeves was a cinch! Let’s not talk about the sleeves I set in the other day in a stiff, unforgiving twill… I’m still traumatized!

Victoria Blazer in Houndstooth Wool by Ginger Makes

The blazer is fully lined in rayon bemberg, also from Mood. I love this soft peachy color. I bought a ton of it a few months back and use it every chance I get! I really like rayon linings since they’re breathable and affordable, so I buy five or six yards of it when I find it in a color I like so I can get a few projects out of it.  I used a scrap of cotton/silk (leftover from this dress waaaaaay back in 2011) for the pockets as it was a perfect match.

Victoria Blazer in Houndstooth Wool by Ginger Makes

Don’t worry, guys, my fun with Brit-inspired wools isn’t over yet! Right before I cut into this fabric, I decided I would give the blazer to my sister. She’s headed off to grad school in the fall, and this just screams “Academic Chic” to me! I hope she’ll feel too cool for school when she’s wearing it! But before you get the impression that I’m a sewing saint, know that I’ve been hoarding a nice length of tweed for myself, so I’ll have a fun blazer of my own in no time!

Victoria Blazer in Houndstooth Wool by Ginger Makes

Do you ever draw sewing inspiration from television? Which shows inspire you most?  Is it weird that almost every episode of Dr. Who makes me weep like a child?  Go on, spill the beans!

Victoria Blazer in Houndstooth Wool by Ginger Makes

Ginger Made: By Hand London Victoria Blazer

Hi, guys!  Hope you’re all well and enjoying the end of the season!  I’m lamenting summer’s end (well, not really, because I’m still in denial about it! There’s so much summer fun that I haven’t had yet, and so many glorious summer garments that I couldn’t find the time to make!), but my newest garment is taking the edge off of fall’s approach  just a bit.  In fact, this guy is jumping right to the top of my greatest hits list!

This is, of course, By Hand London‘s Victoria Blazer pattern, and I’m completely thrilled with it.  It’s a peach of a pattern– easy to make, really wearable, and suuuuuuper cool.

I used this soft, medium-weight twill from Gorgeous Fabrics, and a contrasting cotton sateen with a nice sheen from Mood Fabrics.  I fully lined it with silk charmeuse, also from Mood.  It’s very easy to swap out the partial lining for a full– just cut a pair of sleeves from your lining fabric and insert them into the lining, then assemble your shell, and insert its sleeves.  Attach the lining to the jacket, right sides together, following the pattern directions and leaving the bottom hem on the back unsewn.  After you’ve turned it right-side out, push the lining sleeves into the shell sleeves, wrong sides together, and baste them together around the wrist opening before stitching your cuffs on.  Then you can finish the pattern as directed.  This makes for super clean, sleek insides!

This would be a great first jacket– it’s really straightforward, and the most confusing step, creating the darts and attaching the neckline all at once, is given the photo tutorial treatment in this sewalong post.  How fab is that?!  It’s almost too easy!  The only issue I had was that the front neckline was 1/2″ longer than the back, but that was easily fixed and I suspect that I made a mistake when I traced my pattern.

Can we go back to talking about how much I love this?  I’ve never really worn blazers to work, but I wore this yesterday and felt like the top of the pops!  I got five or six unsolicited compliments, which warmed the very cockles ‘o’ me heart!  I love everything about it– the slouchy but not shapeless fit, the sleeve length, the cuff and collar details.  I was a little worried as I was making this that it would be too boxy and rectangular for me, but I made sure to choose a fabric with some drape to keep it from looking stiff and angular.

Someone who shall remain nameless, but lives with me, asked if Wham! was looking for a third member when he saw me in this for the first time, but I think we all know that’s jealousy talking, yeah?  (He then backpedaled by saying, “Well, Wham! would still be on the top of the charts if it weren’t for the unfortunate bathroom incident”.)  I don’t mind looking slightly New Wave, so here’s me playing a little air keytar:

Except that apparently I’m strumming my air keytar?

Anyway, if you haven’t tried this pattern, hop to it!  It’s a perfect piece for the transition from summer to fall, and it only inflames my love for By Hand London.  I’m super excited to try out their new Anna dress pattern next!

What about you guys?  What are you working on?