12 March 2019

Fabric shopping for Eden

Fabric Shopping for Eden

Want to make our brand new sewing pattern, the Eden coat or jacket, and need a helping hand deciding on fabrics? It's Nikki here, and I'm bringing you a dose of drool-worthy coat and jacket fabric inspiration from some of our favourite online shops.

What we love most about the Eden coat or jacket is that it's so versatile. Make it in a wool coating for a snuggly winter duffle coat, or in a cotton drill or raincoat fabric for a lighter jacket. When deciding on what fabric you want to buy, have a think about what activities you want to do whilst wearing your Eden, or the climate you live in - or are visiting on holiday, you lucky thing - as this will guide your fabric choices.

Please bear in mind that we haven't handled these gorgeous fabrics ourselves (booooo), so we recommend ordering a swatch to check how they feel and handle in real life.

Fabric Shopping for Eden

L-R, top row: 1 / 2 / 3 / 4
L-R, middle row: 1 / 2 / 3 / 4
L-R, bottom row: 1 / 2 / 3 / 4

We could write a whole post about the different qualities of rainwear fabrics (actually, we're doing just that so keep your eyes peeled!), but here is a brief overview on what to look out for. When you're looking for rainwear fabrics you'll probably see them being described as either "water-resistant" or "water-proof". So, what's the difference? 

Water-resistant fabrics, such as ripstop and lightly waxed cotton will keep regular rain off you, but aren't guaranteed to keep you dry in very bad weather. Water-resistant fabrics will keep you dry if it rains while you're commuting to work or out on a gentle country walk, but not, for say, a storm during a mountaineering expedition. Waterproof fabrics, such as PUL and Goretex, are hardier, meaning no water can penetrate them and they will keep you dry in a full-on downpour. Some of these fabrics, however, can feel a bit plasticky or rubbery and aren't breathable so you might get a bit sweaty!

It seems that the stars have well and truly aligned to coincide with the release of Eden as there has been a recent flurry of amazing and exciting printed rainwear fabrics being released. We are being well and truly spoilt with so many gorgeous rainwear options.

You could also try waterproofing a cotton fabric at home with a wash-in or spray-on treatment by companies such as Nik Wax. Look out for an upcoming blog post where Tilly will share tips and tricks for sewing with water-resistant fabrics. 

It should be noted water-resistant and water-proof fabrics may require specialist cleaning and not all can be washed in the washing machine. Make sure you handwash in cool water with specialist detergent if you are unsure.  

Fabric Shopping for Eden
Clockwise from top left: 1 / 2 / 3 / 4 / 5 / 6

Eden looks particularly lovely when made in a medium-weight cotton drill, twill or gabardine - perfect for throwing on over a Cleo dress or Mila dungarees on milder days. The best thing about these sorts of fabrics is they are often available in the most beautiful colours, prints and hues so you can really let your imagination run wild. Cotton fabrics also have the added bonus of being machine washable so caring for your Eden will be easy peasy.

I've made myself an Eden jacket out of a cornflower blue 8oz cotton twill and I'm so excited at the thought of wearing it as soon as spring approaches. 
 Fabric Shopping for Eden
Clockwise from top left: 1 / 2 / 3 / 4 / 5 / 6

If you are planning on wearing your Eden coat in cold weather, a wool coating will be perfect for keeping you snuggly and warm. When it comes to sourcing wool, retailers may specify the type of fabric, such as "melton", "boiled" or "felt" wool or they may describe something as a more generic "coating". A coating is often comprised of a blend of materials, such as wool, polyester, viscose or even cashmere (oooh, cashmere...) and it's definitely worth ordering a swatch so to help you decide.

If you're planning on wearing your Eden coat somewhere really chilly you might want to interline your garment with Thinsulate to keep you extra warm. Thinsulate is a syntheitc fibre insulation layer used in clothing, and is used in garments designed for very cold weather. Heather from Closet Case Patterns has written an extremely informative article about how to interline a coat with Thinsulate if you want more information.

Fabric Shopping for Eden
Clockwise from top left: 1 / 2 / 3 / 4 / 5 / 6

Last but by no means least, let's talk linings. The hood lining, and the sleeve cuffs if you choose to roll them up, are excellent opportunities to show off a statement lining if that's your kind of thing. If you want to keep it classic, or if your coat fabric is particularly jazzy, you may want to keep the lining plain with a solid colour.  

For lining your Eden coat or jacket, try viscose, acetate, polyester, cotton lawn or even low stretch jersey if you're making a casual jacket. The world really is your oyster! Bear in mind that you'll need to be able to slide your arms down the sleeves of your coat, so if your chosen lining feels a bit structured - like a medium-weight cotton - it's a good idea to make the sleeves out of a slippery lining so your arms don't get stuck when getting in and out your coat.

In my opinion, using a low-stretch jersey lining in the short Eden jacket version is a game changer. It feels extra soft and snuggly and there are no shortage of beautiful or wacky jersey prints out there.

I hope this has inspired your Eden fabric shopping! Don't forget to tag us on Instagram @tillybuttons using the hashtag #SewingEden so we can see what you make.