Butterick 5616: DIY Bleached Denim Jacket

DSC_2078
Butterick 5616 bleached denim jacket. Worn with McCalls 7745 polka dot wrap skirt and a white Grainline Archer shirt

Hi Everyone,

Today’s post relates to a denim jacket that I made a couple of months ago, using Butterick 5616. A me-made denim jacket has been on my to-sew list for a couple of years now, so I am glad I finally got it ticked off. There are quite a few different jeans jackets patterns around, but I went for this Butterick one largely because it has the front princess seams, which meant I could easily do a FBA. Most jeans jackets don’t have front princess seams: instead they have that triple piece panelling in front, and I just couldn’t see how to adjust the bust fit easily. Plus I didn’t want too boxy a fit.

DSC_2063
Butterick 5616 bleached denim jacket. Worn with McCalls 7745 polka dot wrap skirt and a white Grainline Archer shirt

To be fair, this jacket has already been worn quite a lot. And I do like it. But….there is still something off with it. When I started this jacket, it started as a very dark indigo denim (see a before picture here). I decided, as I was getting to the end of sewing it, that it looked awful. So I threw the finished jacket in a bucket full of thin bleach solution (1:1 bleach: water) for 20 minutes and bleached it. Prior to the bleaching, I also used some sandpaper to add some distressing. You can see from the before picture the bleaching was very effective, but…I don’t know if I should have another go and it could perhaps go down another couple of shades? And maybe a little more distressing? Possibly….

DSC_2069
Butterick 5616 bleached denim jacket. Worn with McCalls 7745 polka dot wrap skirt and a white Grainline Archer shirt
DSC_2062
Butterick 5616 bleached denim jacket. Worn with McCalls 7745 polka dot wrap skirt and a white Grainline Archer shirt

I will be honest; this jacket was a pretty challenging make. My sewing machine didn’t particularly love the thicker parts of the flat fell seams and initially I was a little disappointed at some of the thread nests inside the jacket. But, on reflection, it’s not soooo bad…in this case, done is better than perfect.  BTW, I did overlock the front yoke seam and the armhole seams.

DSC_2399
Butterick 5616 bleached denim jacket.
DSC_2397
Butterick 5616 bleached denim jacket.
DSC_2395
Butterick 5616 bleached denim jacket.
DSC_2390
Butterick 5616 bleached denim jacket.
DSC_2393
Butterick 5616 bleached denim jacket.

Pattern Review

Pattern Description:

Very loose-fitting jackets A, B, C, D, in three lengths, have princess seams, front and back yokes, slightly forward shoulder, buttoned fronts and topstitch trim. A, B: Below waist, patch pockets with buttoned flaps, three-quarter length sleeves with buttoned cuffs. A: Stand-up collar. B: Collar, topstitched band at lower edge. C: Hip-length, collar, patch pockets and cap sleeves finished with bias tape. D: Hip-length, sleeveless, collar, patch pockets with flaps and armholes finished with bias tape.

The description doesn’t make mention of the fact that there are two piece sleeves.

I made view B.

Pattern Sizing:

6 – 22

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?

Yes.

Were the instructions easy to follow?

The instructions are ok…but they will not tell you how to finish the seams or do flat fell seams, which are the traditional way to construct and finish a denim jacket like this.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?

Unlike most traditional denim jackets, I like the fact that there are princess seams in the front which I used to do a FBA. I like the finished jacket, although I am debating whether to bleach/ distress a little more. I don’t know if I love the cuff opening treatment. Adding an extension there might have been nicer?

Fabric Used:

A dark denim which I bleached to a mid colour using a thin bleach solution 1:1 bleach: water for 20 minutes after I had finished sewing (and topstitching) the jacket.

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:

  • 0.5 inch full bust adjustment
  • 0.5 inch sway back adjustment (adding removed length back to lower hem of jacket)
  • 0.5 inch full arm adjustment
  • Lengthened sleeve by 1 inch

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?

I don’t know if I need another of these jackets anytime soon, but never say never. Yes, I recommend.

Conclusion:

A wardrobe staple which you can make your own in so many ways. A great pattern to have in the stash.

See you soon friends.

DSC_2065
Butterick 5616 bleached denim jacket. Worn with McCalls 7745 polka dot wrap skirt and a white Grainline Archer shirt

 

Advertisements

Posted by

I love to shop, but I also love to sew my own clothes, and am currently on a mission to improve my (fairly basic) dressmaking skills. I confess to going into shops and being outraged at the prices of some (not very well made) garments (is it an age thing?) and think "huh, I could make some thing at least as good as that for less" (is it something to do with coming from the Indian subcontinent?) So this blog details my sewing endeavours, both good and bad....I love to nosey through other people's sewing projects....now everyone can get to see mine.

34 thoughts on “Butterick 5616: DIY Bleached Denim Jacket

  1. It looks terrific. I’ve been thinking about making one (never had an rtw denim jacket that fit properly across the bust!) and it’s inspiring to see how well this turned out. IMO no more distressing is needed. With wear, and if it’s just washed many times the denim will naturally age well.

  2. All that topstitching! Well done. I do like your look in these ‘younger’ casual pieces, like this jacket and your bibs.

  3. If you have to add some more bleaching, you can add it to areas where it would normally lighten up by painting on the bleach solution in those areas. Or you can just wear it because I think it looks amazing as it is. Great job on the jacket!

  4. Beautiful work on this tough pattern & fabric!!!
    If you’re wishing for a more faded look (like the wrong side of the fabric) I’d say bleach it again! Otherwise, leave it to mellow “naturally.” 😉 Lovely, lovely work!

  5. I like it just as it is. I wouldn’t attempt another round of bleaching. My machine doesn’t like top stitching denim. What If found a good workaround was using double regular poly thread in the needle. I got the visible top stitching I wanted without as much stress on my machine.

  6. A simple carpenter’s hammer will tame those thick, denim seam intersections for you. Sew your first pass, then take the item outside and whack at the thick bits with a hammer. This action will soften the fibers and condense them, so that the pesky too-thick bits are flattened enough to glide under your presser foot without breaking needles and snarling thread.

    Got to love a hobby where beating things with a hammer is an accepted practice. Woodworkers shouldn’t have all the fun.

  7. May I ask, what would an extension be on the sleeve? Would it be more like the sleeve on a trench coat, with that little epaulet sort of thing that goes round the cuff?

  8. Your denim jacket looks wonderful. I agree that bleaching improved it. I just finished a denim skirt and found that hammering the seams before sewing as well as a jeans needle which is a bit longer and has a very sharp point, helped immensely with the top stitching.

  9. This looks like such a useful piece to have in your wardrobe for weekends – the paler colour makes it more modern, I think, and more distressing would fit with that, but I’m in two minds about going lighter with it. Plus I’m impressed you flat-felled all those seams so neatly.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s