The Richmond Sew-Along: Attaching the Lining and Finishing the Jacket!

And here we are, in the final stages of finishing our beautiful blazers! I have to be honest with you here and confess that I was going to write separate these last steps into two blog posts, but I just kinda messed up and so they're all here together in one epic saga of blazer-finishing... But don't worry, it's not actually all that much! After the last post, we had assembled our blazer lining, leaving a gap in one sleeve seam ready to turn the jacket the right way out. Now we're going to attach the lining to the actual jacket. You'll want to have your jacket laid out flat, with the facings pulled out, right side up, and then lie your jacket lining over the top, so the two are right sides together. Match the shoulder seams and pin the lining to the jacket all along the raw edges of the facings. I really believe that the diagram in the instruction booklet shows you this better than any photo could so I'm inserting it here. The only tricky aspect here is matching the curved back neckline of the lining to the curve of the back facing, as we have the old convex/concave issue again here. As with the curved side panel seams, you may find it helpful to make small clips into your lining, taking care not to go as deep as the seam allowance (e.g. keep the clips shorter than 15mm / 5/8 inch). Stitch the lining to the jacket facings but be sure to leave the sections at the very ends, below the notches, un-sewn. Once you've sewn the lining in place, you can clip the curves properly. Now we're going to attach the lining sleeves to the jacket sleeves. Firstly, press back the 1.5cm (5/8 inch) hem of the lining sleeve (wrong sides together). Next, make sure that both the jacket sleeves and the lining sleeves are inside out. Lay your jacket down and make sure the sleeves are lying flat, untwisted. Bring the ends of the lining sleeves to meet their corresponding jacket sleeve ends, without twisting any sections.
See how the sleeves on the right are simply folded, not twisted, to meet?
Insert your sleeve lining inside your main sleeve, so that your two sleeve parts now form a tube. Match the pressed/folded back raw edges of the lining to the raw edges of the main sleeve, and pin together, ensuring that you're only pinning through one layer of lining – you're going to sew along that fold in the sleeve lining. Sew around the raw edges of the two sleeve parts at 1.5cm (5/8 inch) in, taking care that you're only sewing through the single layer of the main sleeve and the single layer of the lining. This is tricky as the lining wants to slip around and it's all-too-easy to catch the wrong parts into the seam. I find it easiest to stitch with the lining uppermost, and to follow that pressed fold line. Once successfully sewn, you'll have a gorgeous join holding your sleeve lining inside your jacket sleeve. The sleeve lining is shorter in length than the jacket sleeve so when you turn them the right way out the seam joining them won't sit at the cuff, but inside and you'll only see the main fabric at the ends of the sleeves. Now we turn to the hem of the jacket. First, press up 5 cm (2 inches) all along the hem of the actual jacket (ignore the lining hem). At the front corners, where there's the cut-away, you'll only be pressing up 1.5cm (5/8 inch). Open out the pressed-up section so it's flat again. Now fold back your Front Facings over the Jacket Fronts, with right sides together. Stitch along the bottom of the Facings, stopping 1.5cm (5/8 inch) from the inner edge (you'll stop in line with the seam joining the lining to the facing). Trim the outer corner to reduce bulk.
You can actually trim off more than I've shown here...)
Now, take that free-flapping corner of lining and match it to the exposed corner of the jacket bottom edge. Pin them together, and then carry on pinning the raw bottom edge of the lining all along the raw bottom edge of the jacket. Stitch all along the bottom edge. Ooh, it's time to turn the jacket the right way out! Locate that gap in the lining sleeve seam and reach inside it. Grab the jacket inside and start to pull it through. It will be a squeeze and you'll want to be slow and patient, so you don't rip your sleeve seam open further. Just keep pulling until - voila! - you're jacket is suddenly free! Hand-stitch up the gap in the sleeve. Your only remaining raw edge is back down at the bottom front corner, where you have a little bit of Facing poking out. Tuck it under, and hand-stitch to secure. Now, provided all is looking well, all that remains is to create your buttonhole and attach your button! (If you have no intention of ever doing up your jacket, you might as well skip the buttonhole.) Check that the tailor's tacks marking the button positioning work for you, and once you're satisfied with the position, create a horizontal buttonhole through the right-hand jacket front and facing. Stitch your button onto the left jacket front to match. Unpick any unwanted visible stitches and remaining tailor's tacks. WE DID IT! Hurray, your blazer should be finished and ready to don and dance around in! (I won't say wear out and about, as that's not the way life is right now (#stayhome)). Here's a quick pic of me in mine – I'll be sharing more soon. I'm so, so pleased with how my velvet version turned out and have also run up another crepe one which I'll share soon to show you something a bit more spring-like. As for the velvet trousers I was making to create a suit – they were an unmitigated disaster! Everything went wrong; they've been abandoned. Never mind; I've enough velvet left to create a cushion cover so I can lounge in a particularly coordinated manner... If you've created a Richmond using this sew-along, please let me know. If you've any other questions about sewing Richmond, again, just let me know. I hope to see more of your beautiful blazers soon! Nina x
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