THE SEWING DIVAS sewing, design, fashion

April 10, 2009

Jacket Watch

Filed under: Designing,Inspirations,Musings,Tailoring — georgene @ 8:50 pm

More coverage this week of what The Ladies Who Lead are wearing – there’s always lots of coverage over at the Huffington Post, in their Style section on the right side of the home page. Sometimes it’s more than just fluff pieces or photo essays. Michael Henry Adams has an interesting piece with some historical background with photos on Eleanor Roosevelt and perceptions of the First Lady. Readers of Cathy Horyn’s On The Runway blog over at the New York Times chimed in with 6 pages of comments so far on her latest post about the First Lady’s fashion choices. It’s a hot topic, and there are a lot of different opinions.

There is also a rather breathless piece with photo essay, with a headline that Hillary Clinton is ‘channeling’ Michelle Obama because she wore a silk flower and a wide belt under her jacket. dove-grey-jkt

I am not sure I would go so far as to suppose that HRC is taking fashion cues from the First Lady. A silk flower pin does not in any way remind me of the sparkling pins that Obama tends to wear. You may remember that Madeline Albright was known for her vast collection of brooches when she was Ambassador to the UN, and later as Secretary of State in the Clinton administration. the Museum of Art and Design in NYC will be showing an exhibit of Albright’s pins in Sept. of 2010: Read My Pins, The Brooches of Madeline Albright.

I love them too, and have been working on my collection for many years. A pin can make all the difference on an otherwise bland outfit. For a bolder statement you can put a bunch of them on, or pile on several silk flowers in related colors massed together as a bouquet.
Her dove grey jacket is really pretty – she was at an event with the Prime Minister of Australia this week.

Notice the center front zipper, the shawl construction turnback collar, and the center sleeve seaming. The smile pockets are a nice touch. I really like the fit on this jacket, softly shaped, none of the tightness in the sleeve from last week’s London jacket.


The monochrome pale grey palette is lovely, with the shades of grey reflected in the silk rose, the darker sweater underneath, and the belt we see peeking out from the jacket at the waist, not to mention the darker grey pearls.

Here’s how I imagine the technical sketch for this jacket. Its worth noting that the ¼” topstitch needed to make the zipper work is carried out at the cuff, hem, as well as down the center front and collar turnback. I am sure that there are nice big facings everywhere, but the ¼” topstitch gives it a nice unity.



  1. This is a very nice jacket and a pretty color.
    I like your sketch drawing, it would be a great jacket to make.

    Comment by Ann's Fashion Studio — April 10, 2009 @ 9:05 pm

  2. I like this jacket. It reminds me a little bit of Vogue 7976 (a Sandra Betzina pattern), except the Vogue doesn’t have the great front pockets. Do you know of a pattern like Ms. Clinton’s jacket?

    Comment by Linda — April 10, 2009 @ 9:36 pm

  3. I like this look too. It’s softer and more becoming than the blue jacket.

    Comment by Nancy K — April 10, 2009 @ 9:50 pm

  4. These are wonderful posts Georgene. I love your analysis. Keep ’em coming!

    Comment by Gorgeous Things — April 10, 2009 @ 9:53 pm

  5. I really like the pockets – those look like curved welt pockets, which I’ve never tried, but keep meaning to. Great jacket and good look overall. – Heather

    Comment by luckylibbet — April 10, 2009 @ 10:17 pm

  6. The new outfit, jacket, belt, brooche and the color looks very pretty on her.

    Comment by Els — April 11, 2009 @ 6:58 am

  7. When I saw those photos, the first thing I said to myself was…”Wait a minute — how many times have we seen Hillary Clinton with a jacket that was NOT buttoned up/zipped up?” Forget the flower and belt thing – I think the message is that now that Hillary is doing her last ‘big thing’ (and I do feel that Secretary of State is her last big ‘do’), she’s decided that she’s going to dress the way she damn well wants to. For all she always claimed to not have any interest in fashion, if you look at photos of her from her White House days, she was very much someone ‘of the moment’ – given her height, ‘that moment’ (long voluminous skirts, big shoulders) did not do her a lot of help, but she was not exactly wandering around in burlap sacks during that period. And I feel that now that she doesn’t have to try to exude the sense of ‘I’m a serious person/I’m the possible commander in chief’, she can let some of her inner fashionista out and have some fun here. Frankly, I think the open jacket/belt look is very attractive; it gives the perception of a waistline, which those of us who are short and a little thick in the middle really need. I think it’s a great outfit.

    Comment by Toby Wollin — April 11, 2009 @ 10:04 am

  8. Hillary is actually attractively dressed! The jacket is a little long to suit me but very lovely. I am not a fan of hers but if she is going to represent the USA I would like her to look good doing it. What’s next…a dress? I think I would faint if she wore a dress with a jacket. Keep surprising us Hillary!

    Comment by Linda T — April 11, 2009 @ 10:40 am

  9. This by far the most attractive I’ve ever seen her.

    Comment by Birgitte — April 11, 2009 @ 1:03 pm

  10. All of her jackets seem to be fingertip length, which translates to 29-30″ from the HPS (high point shoulder at the side neck) on most ‘average height’ people.

    Comment by georgene — April 11, 2009 @ 3:12 pm

  11. Now all we need is a pattern with smiley pockets 🙂

    Comment by Kathy — April 11, 2009 @ 5:04 pm

  12. Loving this series 🙂

    Comment by Linda — April 12, 2009 @ 6:01 pm

  13. This ensemble is well put together. The hint of a belt with that large buckle and silver shine is just perfect against all the shades of grey. Home run, Hillary!

    Comment by Bunny — April 13, 2009 @ 6:35 am

  14. This is certainly a better look than the blue jacket we saw previously in terms of fit and style for her. Love these posts, thanks Georgene.

    Comment by Summerset — April 13, 2009 @ 6:00 pm

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