I have a beloved blazer that is sadly no longer really fit to be worn. To replace it I spent months looking for the perfect blazer pattern. I considered Grainline Studio’s Morris Blazer but it didn’t quite have the look I wanted and By Hand London’s Victoria blazer was too boxy for me, but in the end I settled on Papercut’s Bellatrix Blazer.
I have to say I’m so impressed with the pattern, I made the shorter version in an XS with no alterations. I was a little nervous starting as it was a bit more of a challenge than I’m used to and my first time ever lining. But, having scoured the internet for reviews who all concluded that it was easy I decided to go for it. I made two muslins, one to check the fit, then the second began as a wearable muslin but I never finished it. I probably should have done a FBA because when closed it is a tight fit, but honestly I’ve no regrets.
I used a black dotted fabric, I think it’s polyester, with a blue silk lining, both of which I acquired at Sacré Coupon in Paris. The silk was tricky to work with, it SO enjoyed moving and fell apart at the mere mention of a pin. The pattern instructions were fantastic and straight forward, the welt pocket was cleverly designed and fitted into a seam.
My only issue was that I needed to gather the sleeve head so it would fit. This wasn’t mentioned in the pattern instructions and was only an issue with the polyester as it had no stretch so I gathered from the two notches because there weren’t any other markings and I wants the sleeves to be symmetrical. I couldn’t quite visualise the instructions over bagging out, so i just left it and hand stitched along the bottom, the better move I think as the silk would have fallen apart. I didn’t understich the collar, I tried but my stitching was wonky, and frankly, with a good press it all looked fine. I also didn’t add a closure, mostly because this is a light blazer so closing it doesn’t offer much warmth!
I was so, so pleased with the blazer until I noticed the silk fraying around the stitching. I did some googling and concluded that the silk is crepe de chine and is not recommended for linings because it’s so delicate. Despite this I still adore the blazer and intend to wear it until the lining falls apart completely then perhaps replace the lining.
I loved this pattern so much I decided to make another, this one using a wool jersey and a flannel lining. This is the warmest thing ever! My only regrets are than I made it in May and I won’t properly be able to wear it for a few months, and that I didn’t match the tea cups along the back lining. I’ve yet to finish off the sleeve hemming but other than that it’s done. What’s more, is this time I properly bagged out the blazer and under stitched the collar. The overall result is fantastic I’m so proud of myself for fixing all the minor mistakes I made with my dotted one.
So, despite the relatively minor issues of the fraying silk and the cat throwing up on my pattern, I’m really rather pleased with these blazers. I’m still on the hunt for a tuxedo blazer pattern, although I’ve considered altering the shawl collar into a slight tuxedo one, or taking apart my old blazer completely but I think both of those are a little out of my skill reach for now.