Grainline Cascade Duffle Coat: DIY Plaid Checked Wool Duffle Toggle Coat

Grainline Cascade Duffle Coat

Hi Friends,

Today I am sharing my most recent make – hot off the sewing machine just yesterday in fact – the Cascade Duffle Coat by Grainline Patterns. I also like to think of it as “The Coat that Almost Broke my Machine.” More on that in a moment.

Grainline Cascade Duffle Coat

I did not plan on making another winter coat this year, having made one back in February this year. Whilst I love that coat (the fit, the warmth, the colour) I am finding it is not too practical to wear. The basket weave is actually quite prone to getting snagged on handbags and doors and I decided I wanted a more practical, every day kind of a coat. What I really wanted was a red coat and I was so close to ordering some red wool coating, but in the end I decided I should try and sew from stash. Making this coat from my stash means I have used three pieces of wool coating up this year and am now happy to purchase some new wool coating for next time 🙂

Grainline Cascade Duffle Coat

The outer fabric I used is this one. It is a lambswool/ cashmere/ tencel blend. It behaved well during sewing and pressing. I cut interlining from a heavy brushed cotton and treated it as underlining, maching the interlining to the front and back yokes, the main front and back body pieces and the lower front and back bands (see details on my purple wool coat for more information on how I did it last time). This coat is heavy and warm. The hood of the coat is lined using a sherpa style (?) fabric and the body of the coat is lined with a viscose lining. I hand made the toggles using scraps of leather and leather cord. The heavy metal zipper is a YKK one.

Grainline Cascade Duffle Coat
Grainline Cascade Duffle Coat – Back lining and sherpa style hood lining
Grainline Cascade Duffle Coat
Grainline Cascade Duffle Coat – zipper detail and self made leather toggles

As ever, my full review for this pattern can be found below. I just wanted to say that this is a wonderfully drafted and devised pattern. The pattern includes separate back and front lining pieces, facing pieces for the hood, sleeves and hem of the coat and the instructions talk you through bagging the lining out – which personally speaking I love. There is a comprehensive sew along and instructions for making your own toggles if you wish. I also used Jen’s tutorial on how to match plaids when you sew. Plaid matching on a coat like this was not too pleasant! I ended up having to order another metre of fabric and recut one entire front side because I was not happy with how the checks had fallen. After consultation on instagram I decided to go with a bias cut front centre band but re-cut my pockets to be on the straight of grain. Oye! The headache that caused. In the end I am pretty happy with how things worked out, although hindsight is, of course, a wonderful thing.

Grainline Cascade Duffle Coat
Grainline Cascade Duffle Coat
Grainline Cascade Duffle Coat

As I mentioned above, this coat is heavy and warm. During the final stages of maching the lining in, my machine decided it didn’t like sewing through 7 layers (!) of wool, cotton and interfacing, and blew a fuse. You can get the full story on instagram. Fortunately I have a wonderful sewing repair man who did a speedy and relatively inexpensive repair for me and the second time around I lengthened my stitch length and things worked out ok. I am so proud of the finish on this coat – and that’s largely thanks to the brilliant drafting and instructions of this pattern.

Pattern Review

Pattern Description:
The Cascade Duffle Coat is a fresh take on a classic shape featuring a slight A-line cut, toggle front closure, and a hidden zipper band to keep the coat shut tight against cold weather. The hem of View A hits at the hip while View B’s falls to mid-thigh. Although View A is shown with a collar and View B with a hood, both are interchangeable allowing you to create your own perfect coat.

I made view B.
Pattern Sizing:
0 – 18.

I cut a straight size 18 with a few tweaks.
Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?
Were the instructions easy to follow?
The instructions (at least the sew along which is largely what I followed) are amazing. Nothing else to say about them!
What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?
I love the finished coat. Such a professional finish. I love that separate lining pieces are included and also facings for the hood, sleeves and hem. I also love the hidden zipper band and the toggle front closure. The only thing I perhaps don’t love is the sleeves seem to have some drag lines at the top of the sleeve. I added a thin custom made shoulder pad and sleeve heads which did seem to help.
Fabric Used:
Outer: lambswool/ cashmere/ tencel blend.

Hood lining: sherpa style fleecy lining.

Body of coat: viscose lining.

Hand made leather toggles.

Interlined with brushed cotton.

Heavy metal YKK zipper.
Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:

  • Removed 3 inches in length from lower lengthen/ shorten lines.
  • Shortened sleeves by 2 inches.
  • Used smallest size pocket positon for pocket placement (there is a 1 inch difference in pocket placement position between size 0 and size 18).
  • Graded out below waist by 0.5 inch at side front and side back seams.
  • 0.5 inch small shoulder adjustment.
  • 0.5 inch full arm adjustment.
  • Cut centre panel of hood, front and back yokes and centre front bands on the bias.
  • Added very thin custom made shoulder pads and self fabric bias strip sleeve heads to support sleeve shape.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?
This was a time consuming and involved project but I enjoyed it and am pleased with the outcome. I would actually consider making this again in a solid fabric – but not any time soon 🙂 Yes, I highly recommend.

Super professional finish and brilliant instructions. This is a cosy, fun coat with classic features.

We are off for a few days to the Georgian city of Bath tomorrow and I might just take my new coat with me. Enjoy the festive season!

Grainline Cascade Duffle Coat


Posted by

By day I work in the exciting world of pharmaceutical regulatory affairs, registering medicines (!), but by night I turn in to a sewing diva, making all manner of clothes in my beautiful sewing space (which you can tour using the link at the top of this blog). I love how sewing and sewing clothes that fit my curvy body continually challenges me. I enjoy working with all different types of fabric, and whilst I don't like to put restrictions on myself and say I won't buy RTW, the truth is that I probably rarely do buy it, preferring the fit of my own me-made clothes. I love to use natural fibres where ever possible and colourful coats are an obsession of mine! Sewing is both my addiction and my therapy. You can contact me at

44 thoughts on “Grainline Cascade Duffle Coat: DIY Plaid Checked Wool Duffle Toggle Coat

  1. What a lovely and practical coat. That’s a lot of work, so I take my hat off to you for sticking with it, it’s very stylish. Especially love the fur in the hood. Glad your machine was fixed too. I’ve got a couple of weeks off work and am really fancying making a coat too, whilst I have the chance. The Stylearc Stella pattern is in my stash. There’s some nice Burda magazine ones I fancy too. Decision time!

    1. Thanks Karen. I think this is one of those practical coats everyone needs: walking the dog, doing the school run, watching the kids sports etc. But the stylearc Stella is something completely different and I think my next coat will be more fancy.

  2. Thank you for this post. I have this pattern and some plaid wool coating purchased last year to make it. I will refer to your instructions when I undertake the project. You did a great job, excellent matching of the plaid. Beautiful coat.

  3. All the heart emojis!!!! You’re giving me serious motivation! A few questions, how tall are you? And, is there enough ease to skip the FBA? And did you go up a size to account for your interlining?

    1. Hey Renee. I am 5’3″ and I am approx 41 – 42 inches full bust. Can’t recall finished measurements on the size 18 but I did check it and felt there was enough to chance no FBA, and I think the fit is pretty spot on. No I didn’t go up a size to account for the interlining. I used a heavy brushed cotton, trimming out as close to the stitching line as possible, and I don’t think it adds too much bulk.

  4. Well done for persevering. I have just finished my own wool plaid cascade duffle coat…. It was an epic journey but worth it. I put both the front strip and the pockets on the bias as I had already spent literally hours pattern matching the stripes and could not face any more. I love your fleecy hood, the hood is so big there is definitely enough room to carry that off. Great job x

  5. Lovely job. I love how you cut some sections on the bias. It adds visual interest. I agree with the decision to place the front pockets on the straight grain and match the plaid.

  6. Wow! What a beautiful, but gloriously functional coat. This looks so cozy, Manju, and like the ideal coat to wear on a weekend in Bath. The bias cut front band is such a great bit of added interest. Once again, your skills are enviable!

  7. Wow! It’s gorgeous, and love your photo shoot in the woods! It looks super toasty, I could’ve done with it in Poland, we’ve just come back from a couple of nights away and it was feeeeezing! So glad your machines illness wasn’t terminal 😀

  8. Wow! Fantastic job! You had me at the first picture, but then you flashed me the pink lining and I was absolutely slain! Love it. 😀

    1. Thanks Tomasa. There is actually some pink in the fabric which hasn’t come across in the photos but that’s why I decided to go with a pink lining. Regardless I am very pleased with the finished garment.

  9. This is awesome! I bet you love it. It’s inspired me to make this ….I have some tan velour-type fabric that would work. Lovely job!

  10. Wowsers! Your coat is brilliant, and the check matching is amazing. Always time-consuming, but definately worth it. Love the pink lining too. Happy wearing!

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