We've completed our coat exterior, our collar and our lining...now we just need to join all three pieces together!

The method I've used for the Goldstream Peacoat involves some handsewing along the hem of the coat and the hem of the sleeves. I've chosen this method since it is the simplest to wrap your brain around (bagging a lining can be pretty confusing for a first time outerwear sewist) and is a traditional way of inserting a coat lining. If you want to use an alternative method for attaching your lining to your coat, please go ahead! Options could include bagging it (no hand sitching involved! Sew as per this excellent tutorial) or hemming the lining seperately so that it hangs loose in the garment.

Ok, let's get started:

Place the coat exterior and collar together so that the right side of the coat is facing the undercollar.


Line up the notches and pin and baste in place.

Place the coat/collar combo and lining/facing combo with right sides together.  Keep the sleeves tucked into the center of the 'sandwich' out of the way of the coat edges. Pin the two layers together so all notches and seams match.

I like to begin my stitching at the center back neckline and work my way to the hem.  I then stop stitching and start again at the center back neckline working my way to the other side of the hem. Don't forget to sew one or two stitches at a 45 degree angle at the lapel corners so that it is possible to turn them to create a crisp point.

Grade the seam allowances and clip across the corners.

 

Flip the coat right side out...isn't this part exciting?! Take your time thoroughly pressing everything. Pressing is incredibly important at this step (and every step) to ensure a professional looking garment.

We are now ready to do some handstitching - we'll tackle the smaller portion of handstitching first by stitching the sleeve hems.

Turn the coat sleeve hem up at the hem notch and press.

Catchstitch the hem in place - don't worry about making tidy small stitches for this step. The main goal here is to keep the wool hem allowance adhered to the outer sleeve so that the folded edge of the hem stays crisp after years of wear.

Turn under the sleeve lining 5/8" and press. Place the lining over the turned up sleeve hem - it will overlap the raw wool edge 5/8". Pin it in place and then take your time slipstitching it. The sleeve could be considered finished at this point. If you would like to match the rest of the topstitching on the coat, you could topstitch 3/8" from the completed hem on both sleeves. I've decided to leave off this topstitching for Matt's version since his will be quite a formal coat.

Okay, we've had a chance to practice our handstitching, let's move on to the hem now and really apply our handstitching patience and skills!

 

Begin the hem by first stitching the coat and facing together: Position the facing and coat front with right sides together (so you are once again turning this part of the coat inside out, there is no need to turn it inside out completely). You will notice that the facing is angled while the hem is not. Place the raw edges together despite this difference. Machine stitch along the hem at the level of the hem notch which you will find on the coat front and lining pattern pieces.

Trim away the excess fabric and clip the corner thoroughly.

Turn the facing right side out and press. This is where the angled facing comes in to play. Instead of pressing along the seam line, allow the coat front to fall as it wants to so that the hem is a right angle. This will cause the seam line to angle up. Later, when we stitch the lining the fact that the facing is angled will minimize the exposed raw facing edge found on many tailored coats. I wish I had explained this more thoroughly in the instruction booklet as it is quite a nifty bit of simple pattern drafting!

Complete the coat exterior by folding the hem up at the notch (level with the completed facing hem) and press. Keep the hem folded precisely by basting 1/8" from the folded hem...this way you don't need to worry about it shifting as you hand sew.

Catch stitch the hem allowance in place just as we did around the sleeves.

The final step to complete the lining is, of course, to hem the lining material itself. Turn the lining under 5/8" and press. Just as we did on the sleeves, allow the lining to overlap the coat hem 5/8" and pin the lining thoroughly in place. This will be somewhat awkward where the lining joins the facing - tuck the lining corner between the lining and wool layers to find the point where you should start stitching.

Handstitch along the entire bottom of the lining. Once finished, you will notice that the lining seems too long - it wants to form a tuck.

This intentional tuck will allow the outer peacoat fabric to fall smoothly without ever puckering or bubbling at the hem due to the strain of the lining.

Wow! We really are almost done now! On Friday we will add our buttons and buttonholes.