I'm very happy to be able to introduce you to our newest pdf pattern, the Darcy Coat. I'm particularly excited about this launch because the teaser I put out on instagram a week ago received the biggest response of any launch I've done. I'm always pleased to hear a good response to a new design but this one is special to me.
I first designed this coat in the winter of 2020. I had planned to release this style for my previous business (Henri London, a sustainable women's clothing brand). I had the sketch pinned to my wall for months and we finally developed the coat pattern as a piece to release at Henri for AW 2021.
Throughout this pattern development I started to build the Modern Sewing Co. business and my attention started to shift more towards this new business and the possibilities it held. It's fair to say the pandemic brought enormous challenges to Henri London as a small fashion brand with a shop in Hackney and small batch ethical sourcing in India.
I made the decision to close Henri to swap my supply chain challenges for a world where people are their own supply chains, making clothes from their own homes. It was the best decision I ever made but one of the sore spots was that I had REALLY envisaged this coat looking beautiful in our 2021 AW collection. I was gutted that this piece didn't get its moment to shine. It's such a simple design but one that I was really proud of so it was bitter sweet letting go to that vision.
But here we are in 2023 and I've worked through the winter to bring it not to factories and shop floors but instead to home sewers across the world. It feels really special to bring this design with me from Henri and let it have it's moment in a different way; giving the template to you to decide how you want to shape your own version of it. Which feels like a nice way for this design to be in the world.
As always with a pattern launch email, it's a long one! Have a read of the garment details below and let me know your thoughts!
The fit of the Darcy Coat is oversized with dropped shoulders, wide sleeves, a wide body and long three-quarter length (although some would consider this practically a full length piece).
This wool version is fully lined and hand finished, although you can also opt to leave it unlined for a lighter weight finish.
Please note, when I say it's oversized, I mean it's oversized. If you're looking for a neat fit this isn't for you. It shouldn't swamp you but there is plenty of room for movement and that's exactly how it's meant to be. I'm size Small/UK 10, 5'10 tall and I wear a size 10. It fits over my biggest bulkiest jumpers but it also drapes really nicely over light layers too.
(This fabric is mid-weight wool from a deadstock shop in Shepherds Bush.)
The dropped shoulder really benefits from a shoulder pad and you can see the smooth curve of this shoulder is supported nicely. This gives it a smarter finish which is great for a wool version. If you're opting for an unlined version you might prefer not to use one, it's something you can utilise depending on the look you're going for.
One of the main features of this coat is the sleeve tabs which add pleats to the sleeve. This is a feature I love and it has a couple of functions as well as being decorative. The tabs nip in the bottom of the cuff to stop drafts going up the wide sleeve, a handy feature for colder days. And they also help to manage the amount of volume in the coat, stopping the excess fabric from flapping around and getting in the way.
But mostly they're a nice design feature and they always stay pleated up on my own jackets.
I couldn't release this coat without adding a belt option. I think it's a lovely feature to add to a coat sewn with a light fabric. Admittedly I haven't worn this belt with the coat as when layering over wooly jumpers it can feel a bit bulky but I think it would look lovely in a lighter weight summer jacket in gabardine or heavy linen.
In terms of the collar, I had fun creating this shape. It'a quite a statement and I think it adds a touch of class to this relatively simple design.
The second sample I've been wearing is this waxed cotton version. This is a mid-weight dry waxed cotton (bought from Raystitch) and I paired it with brass snaps for the front fastening and the sleeve tabs too. I left this version unlined for a lightweight, causal feel which works really nicely.
While collars are still fresh in your mind you might spot that this one is slightly smaller. If your fabric is lighter weight you can always trim the edge off to create a smaller collar like this one.
The patch pocket variation comes with this coat pattern for 2 reasons. It is an easier pocket to sew which means it's a coat that intermediate sewers can use. And I've also found it works better for fabrics such as waxed cotton which I find doesn't have enough flexibility for neatly sewn welt pockets.
The sleeve tab comes in 2 widths, a wide one for fabrics such as wool or a narrow one for thinner fabrics.