I made myself a new coat and I love the way it turned out. I used Butterick 5515 a See & Sew pattern. It is a lined coat in two lengths and two different sleeve styles. I made view B with the straight sleeves and the mid knee length. It also has side seam pockets.
The Sewing Expo. I think I need to go back this year as I haven't been in several years. The fabric is a very soft wool and silk blend herringbone weave. It feels lovely. The lining is a lightweight silk print. I thought it went nice with the grey coating. I like using prints for my linings. I think it adds interest to an otherwise boring inside.
The coat has only one button on the front and a snap on the inside to hold the flap level. The pattern envelope says "Yes it's Easy" and yes it was easy. The princess seams make for a nice fit and it is pretty straight forward sewing. I mostly followed the pattern except for the hand sewing the pattern suggests. The pattern called for hand sewing the sleeve lining in place at the cuff and hand sewing the lining in place at the hem edge too. I did all that by machine except for a small area in the center back hem that I needed an opening for turning the coat right side out. And I hand sewed the button and the snap on. The coat also has shoulder pads which the pattern called for hand sewing in place. I sewed these in place by machine too. I am a tailor for my job and over the years I have learned many shortcuts in construction by examining the clothes I am altering. Most ready to wear has very little hand sewing. I am not against hand sewing I even find it very relaxing at times. But machine sewing is so much faster, so if I can make it look nice using my machine I will. I love my new coat and plan to wear it often.
After wearing my new coat I decided to make a few changes to it. First thing was I didn't like where the inside snap was placed. It was on the lining and I had to catch some of the outside coat fabric to keep it secure and from tearing the lining. But that made the coat pucker on the front while wearing it. So I moved the snap so that it was just at the edge of the facing and I added another snap about 2" below the first one. This looks much better.
The second thing that was bugging me was that the side seam pockets would not lie flat. The coat was not to tight which would be a reason for the gaping pockets. The pockets needed to be anchored to keep them from drooping down and causing them to gap. To fix this I used some bar tacks at the top and bottom of the pocket edge. And I also used a chain thread tack to hold the inside of the pocket to the edge of the front seam. This solved the problem and the pockets look great.
The third thing was I felt the shoulders where a bit to broad, they just felt to big. So I reduced the shoulders by about 3/4". Now I like my coat even better. Now it is just right.