Here’s a true fact: it’s literally impossible for me to buy a blazer that fits. I’m hardly that far from the norm—an average American size 14/16 (UK 18/20), and OK, I’ve got big boobs (38 H) but so do lots of other people. But do any brands cater to this? No siree!
Then let’s take it one step further: what if I actually want a high quality blazer, made with gorgeous fabrics and proper tailoring inside? Forget about it!
Which is why my first proper Cashmerette Auburn Blazer is such a joy.
Designing this sewing pattern and being able to sew it in whatever fabrics I choose means for the very first time in my life I have a luxurious, well-made blazer that fits all of me. Not having to compromise with boxiness, or huge shoulders, but actually fit each part of me properly.
That’s profound stuff!
I have always been such a fan of statement outerwear—despite the lack of an ability to actually purchase it for myself—so when I made my first “proper” Auburn Blazer (i.e. not a sample made of muslin!) I decided to go full out.
First up, the main fabric. I decided to buy some iconic Harris Tweed, a nod to my Scottish childhood growing up in the Highlands. Harris Tweed is known the world over as an iconic woven wool tweed, made on the Isle of Harris, off the west coast of Scotland. They have a whole range of options from tartans, to checks, herringbones and plains, and it was an agonizing time deciding which too choose.
In the end, I went with this wonderful saturated, jeweled, deep plum colour, called “Rich Purple 212”. I knew it would make a statement but also go with a lot of my wardrobe, including my often-worn stripy Concord T-shirts and jeans.
However I couldn’t limit myself to just one option! So, for the undercollar, I used a magnificent purple/cream herringbone (NHB3) which is a fun surprise hidden underneath. These little details are just one of the things I love about sewing!
Then for the lining, another big decision. I am a huge fan of statement linings, so I wanted something bold that would coordinate with the deep plum. Keeping my jacket firmly planted in the British Isles, I headed over to Liberty of London and decided to use this phenomenal new silk satin print, called ‘Coastal Parade‘, together with a co-ordinating lavender duchess satin flat piping.
Again, far from a cheap option! But you know what? I am worth it. My curvy, busty body, that works so hard to create these sewing patterns, is worthy of a luxury garment. Not only that, but I really spent my sweet time making it, and I know it’s going to last for years. So perhaps expensive upfront, but I expect the price-per-wear is going to be great.
It’s the combination of the fit and details which I think make the Auburn Blazer shine.
Princess seams that work for an H cup…
That angled single welt pocket…
And I decided to make a fabric-covered button from the tweed to keep the elegant look.
For this mini photoshoot, I headed up to Broadway Tower, a local landmark that sits atop the hill that overlooks the village where I’ve been living for the past year. I channeled all my country squire vibes and thoroughly entertained some locals who wondered who this under-dressed woman was (it was FREEZING!) and why she was leaning against walls at a jaunty angle. The things we do for fashion!
So that’s the story of my Harris Tweed Auburn Blazer—and it may well not be my last! I’ve always wanted a soft grey blazer, and I might just have to fire up the iron, get out the clapper, and start tailoring again soon…