THE SEWING DIVAS sewing, design, fashion

May 31, 2006

One that didn’t make it

Filed under: Closures,Couture Techniques,Embellishment — georgene @ 6:22 am

By Diva Georgene
I received this sample from a factory in China in an appalling state – the trim was awful, the buttons were awful, it was nothing like what I envisionned when I sent off the development.
So what? you may ask. Only that I spent countless hours renovating it: ripping off everything and reconstructing it bit by bit, from setting on all the trim by hand, adding an organza bias to the hem and cuff to give it a little heft.

Here’s the a view of the cuff before I added the passementerie trim.

All of this was done by hand – impossible to put this knit to the machine and control it.

A trip to Britex netted me an impossibly expensive remnant of Italian silk twill to use as a facing. The knit was too soft to hold up the front, and the factory had not followed my instructions to put in a facing with fusible. Since there was no way to get more of the knit, I could only hope to match the color.

I prayed that this shopworn remnant would look better when I brought it back from the cleaners. The color was spot on when I finally got it back and I was able to find enough ‘good’ bits to cut out a back neck facing and the inside front.

Altogether I feel like I spent a 100 hours, and hundreds of dollars in this make-over. Unfortunately it got the axe, so now it’s in the reject sample pile. Let me just say I have a better insight to the workroom at Chanel now. They do this with Linton Tweeds however. I am not sure whether this would be harder or easier than my ribbon stripe knit. Too bad it’s not my size, I would wear it forever. If you add everything up, it definitely equals couture, although it didn’t start life that way. 4-Pocket Jacket R.I.P.


  1. What a difference your makeover made! The jacket is gorgeous – a classic. Surely, you must know someone who is this size? It’s too beautiful to waste away in the back of a closet.

    Comment by Gigi — May 31, 2006 @ 7:12 am

  2. Gigi, I can’t bear to give it away. For the moment it’s in The Archives. You never know when its day will come!

    Comment by Georgene — May 31, 2006 @ 7:15 am

  3. I love your final version! I agree with Gigi, that it’s gorgeous.

    Comment by jemgirlca — May 31, 2006 @ 7:23 am

  4. I agree with Gigi, the jacket is too beautiful to languish in a closet. Perhaps you have a spot to hang it on display for a while. Maybe you can offer it up for production later on, or maybe it will make a wonderful gift sometime in the future.

    Comment by patsijean — May 31, 2006 @ 7:30 am

  5. Georgene – I’m not clear. Is this a sample garment that you “commisioned” to a Chinese factory? Could you explain a bit more about what you are doing? I saw your write-up on your visit there, but your assignment wasn’t clear to me. Exactly what is your latest design job?

    Comment by nina — May 31, 2006 @ 10:43 am

  6. I currently work freelance for various manufacturers in the USA, providing creative and technical design consulting. This particular jacket was part of a development package of knitted garments that went out to have prototypes made in China on behalf of my client last December. Although similar to what I did on my last trip to China and Korea, it’s a different yarn, different factory, different deal than my earlier post about my recent trip.

    Comment by Georgene — May 31, 2006 @ 1:14 pm

  7. This jacket is absolutely beautiful. You work is beyond superb.

    Comment by Wanda — February 12, 2007 @ 8:34 pm

  8. j’ai reconnu ton style le 2 janvier 2008 et ceci même après 30ans !! bravo surtout avec la traduction française.
    A Georgene, la dernière des élèves de madame Gogel qui fait encore de la haute couture…..
    Meilleures voeux à toute l’équipe et gros becs de Swizerland

    Comment by cat5 — January 2, 2008 @ 10:52 am

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