Whoo hoo Coco Black is finally done! My Sashiko Happy Coat Yarn Experiment is complete. It’s time to take this baby for a spin and review the results!!! I finished it last night and given it was a warm day today I had to get my butt into gear early in the morning to capture these pics for my completed Stonewashed/Whirlette version of my Sashiko Happy Coat. She is WARM (and so was today)!!
First, some pics. Second, tech talk and I will spam you with more pics....
And some full length pics on my Veronica mannequin:
It's paired back and restrained - I really wanted to make a Happy Coat that would suit someone who perhaps wasn't keen on the embroidery, as well as offer a non-wool alternative.
So how does the Stonewashed/Whirlette Combo perform from a technical perspective?
SUMMARY OF THE PROJECT:
Coco is a Size Small exactly as written in the Sashiko Happy Coat pattern except:
· 2 strands of Yarn A is replaced with 1 strand of Stonewashed with 1 strand of Whirlette for all the Bodice Collar and Sleeve pieces
· Yarn B or C is Catona, but I have only used it for slip stitch trims and a few small embroidery motifs on the Collar and Button Tabs
· 3 strands of Whirlette was used to edge and seam the Collar to the Bodice, and to edge the Cuffs and Coat opening
· 2 strands of Whirlette was used to make the Button Tabs for the Cuffs and the Back Bodice
· 1 strand of Stonewashed with 1 strand of Whirlette was used to edge and seam the Sleeves to the Bodice
Main Coat fabric of dc flo rows using a 5mm hook:
Pre-blocked 16 sts & 14 rows to 10cm
Post-blocked 15-15.5 sts & 14 rows to 10cm
Video is really the only way to see how the fabric moves (or doesn’t move) so you can assess drape, so I recorded these short takes (please forgive the awkward modelling... or have a good laugh if the mood takes you!!): It doesn’t have the bounce of the merino, but it does have good swoosh capabilities, and I am giving it a thumbs up.
I love how it swings and moves, and given this is a cotton/acrylic blend, that comes down to a suitably relaxed stitch gauge to allow the drape. This also prevents it from being too heavy.
Coco weighs in at 1098 grams as the complete coat (vs my Curio Spring Our Tribe/Alpaca Rhythm version size Small Coat No.2 which weighs 924g). So that's a big positive!
Here is the breakdown:
Collar: 100g (65g Stonewashed; 35g Whirlette)
Bodice : 658g (428g Stonewashed, 230g Whirlette)
2 Sleeves: 206g (134g Stonewashed, 72g Whirlette)
Trims, Button Tabs, yarn used for assembly: 79g (64g Whirlette, 15g StoneWashed)
My original estimates are at the bottom of this table which was originally shown at the beginning of the experiment when I compared Collars:
Total actual Stonewash used in Coco Black: 642g
(13 x 50g balls but you would need an extra 1 ball for swatching, so a total of 14)
vs the original yardage estimate was 833g (17 x 50g balls).
Total Whirlette used: 401g
(4 x 100g balls, but you would need an extra 1 ball for swatching and it’s at the limit anyway, so a total of 5 balls are needed as originally estimated)
Total Catona used: 25g
(1 x 25 or 50g ball would be enough to do very small areas of embroidery as I have done, but if you wanted to work all the Bodice Embroidery as well, I would guess a total of 4 x 100g Catona balls would be enough)
Conclusion: Overall, the yardage estimates are pretty good then – you are likely to have a few (3-4 maybe) Stonewashed balls leftover if you have already ordered according to the above table, but that would be enough to make a beanie or a cowl or mittens. See the bottom of this post for a revised yardage.
THE SIZE COMPARED TO THE SCHEMATIC:
As laid flat, it comes very close:
45cm across the bust vs 43.5cm on Schematic - bit extra room isn't bad
35cm across the back vs 35cm on Schematic - yay
88cm length shoulder to hem vs 88cm on the Schematic - yay
17.5cm Upper Arm ½ circumference vs 17.5cm on Schematic - yay
55cm Sleeve length vs 57.5cm on Schematic - hmmm
Over all I am very happy with the fit, but the Sleeves are a smidge short. I am not sure why this length seems affected when the whole Bodice Length matches okay, but it may come down to it’s weight under gravity. Maybe the Sleeves could have benefitted from adding 3 or 4 stitches in length. But this is still a “maybe” - I have found cotton garments tend to grow a little with time and gravity during wear, and I have only just finished it and popped it on, so this may not be my final answer.
This factor leads me to the length of the coat – I love how it is now, but maybe it will grow a bit too much with use? I don’t know the answer to this yet. I am 170cm tall, and it sits just above my knee. Only time and wear will tell if it will “grow” to a problematic degree but I doubt it. If I had have removed 6 sts in length around the Bodice, the “look” would not be affected and it might have allowed a bit of leeway there. On the other hand, I might be overthinking it (does happen sometimes!)
THE FINISHING DETAILS:
I decided to tack the Collar down so it’s permanently folded to maintain the parallel lines at the back of the Collar and keep everything in place. I used 1 strand of Whirlette for the stitching, keeping it relaxed so it doesn’t gather the fabric.
My coat used 15 x 25 mm buttons: 2 for the collar, 9 for the front, 1 each for the Cuff Button Tab, and 2 for the Back Bodice Button Tab. This was determined by me not being able to source 17 buttons as I crocheted 11 button holes down the Right Front Bodice. (Real world problems). But I actually think it would be fine with 7 buttons down the front (13 buttons total), as the lowest buttons are were the hips are and I probably won’t often wear them closed anyway. I used Whirlette to sew the front buttons and Catona for all the buttons on the Button Tabs.
BUTTON HOLE ROW INSTRUCTIONS: The button-hole row is worked from the hemline to the collar, the last stitch remains unworked as per Neckline shaping, and each button hole repeat is made of 6 sts: (2 dc flo, 2 ch, skip 2 sts, then 2 dc flo) (UK terms).
For your tweed-look SW/W coat, crochet in Main Fabric Pattern from the hemline until you have [(6 x number of desired button holes at front of coat) +1] stitches remaining, then work your number of desired button hole stitch repeats and leave the last st of the previous row unworked, turn, and work the last 2 rows as described in the pattern.
For my coat I ended up working Main Fabric Patt until (9 x 6) + 1 = 54 sts remained, then worked (2 dc flo, ch2, skip 2 sts, 2 dc flo) 9 times, left the last st unworked, then turned....
I am totally in love with the Button Tabs, but a simple detail on an otherwise fairly plain coat can be harder than you think to get right! They are sewn on along their top edge and side points, and loosely tacked at the bottom so they still cast a shadow line and look layered on rather than firmly attached. When there is nothing else to draw your eye, any crooked or wonky stitches are going to stick out like the proverbial dog’s set of reproductive glands... so take care!
I did mention in last week’s post that I stumbled at the finish line. It was with sewing the Back Bodice Button Tab to the coat. Late-night-Susan powered through sewing the tab across the back, buttons and all, and then when I hung it on Veronica (notice late-night-Susan ignored her own advice for attaching these sorts of things while hanging on a mannequin), it was sloping down on one side. Sigh.... time to go to bed instead.
Once upon a time back in 2018, I had sewn silk gorgette lining to the front lace panel of my competition Spider Lace Maxi Dress, then decided I needed to remove it to let the skin show through the holes in the lace. I was rushing late at night to get it ready for the competition, and in the slip of a stitch cutter I accidentally lacerated the crochet cotton at the top edge of the middle of the feature neckline on my competition dress, mere days before having to ship it to the CGOA!! Deep breaths!! Thank goodness I had the sense at that moment to place it carefully down, walk away, and not touch it until I had thought about how to fix it (which I then did successfully and it all turned out okay - phew), BUT.... I am never going to cut stitches to fix something in a rush again, and late at night is not the time...
So this was the reason for the delay to finish Coco Black. I was being sensible, and then I had to go to my day job. I sorted the tabs out yesterday afternoon after work in a calm relaxed fashion working with the coat ON the mannequin, and here we are! Good decision.
THE UPSHOT: 1. I love it!
2. Maybe add 3-4 stitches to the Sleeve length and remove 6 stitches from the Bodice length; otherwise, go for it.
3. Revised Yardage: Given my Small Coat used less yarn than I had estimated (and allowing for swatching) I will remove 3 balls of Stonewashed and about 50g of Whirlette from each of my original yardage allowances as follows:
for S (M: L: XL: 2XL: 3X: 4XL)
Scheepjes Stonewashed: 14 (16: 17: 19: 21: 22: 24) x 50g balls
Scheepjes Whirlette: 5 (5: 5: 6: 6: 7: 7) x 100g balls
As Coco Black: 1 (1: 1: 1: 1: 1: 1) x 50g ball
If Full Original Embroidery: 4 (4: 4: 4: 4: 4: 4) X 100g balls
If Full Original Embroidery plus extra around Sleeve Cuff: 5 (5: 5: 5: 5: 5: 5) x 100g balls
I hope you enjoy making your tweed version of my Sashiko Happy Coat. It has a totally different vibe. I wanted this one to be a classic look and my Leftovers version to celebrate colour overload, but the possibilities are endless! You can find my coat pattern on Ravelry and on Etsy.
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