Albion Holiday Test

I tested the Albion (Colette Patterns) and I feel so proud to have made a coat!.  Oh, sure there are places for improvement but my man wore it to work today and he got ambushed at the door!  My goal was to do a sort of muslin but I did not think it wise to use thin material to test the fit so I decided to use all the coupons I could and broke down on a trip to the local fabric store in which I normally only buy notions and thread.  Since I needed to make an XXL…that is a lot of fabric to work with but I was able to get shell and lining for $50.

The pattern is incredibly easy to follow and actually the toughest part is cutting all the pieces of fabric out, once that is done you are home free and the fun begins.  There are only two areas to watch out for,  one is the pocket positioning.  Make sure you do not creep too close to CF like I did. I  was not as careful in marking my fabric as I should have been.  The result is that my fourth toggles had to be buried under the pocket!  The only other choice was to seam rip and move; it did not take long to decide to snuggle the togs under the pocket a bit; so watch out on the positioning.  The second item is that if you are using a heavy fabric for the shell, I would consider using the lining fabric for the under piece of the pocket flap.  It is less bulky and lies better overall.  That is it!  It was so smooth and easy!

Albion test coatalbion on chrisMy man, sporting the  coat in front of the tree.  Ya know, for a test coat, to have your loved one be so proud of your work–well, that makes it all worth it!

I want to talk toggles.  There was only one at the store and I decided then and there to buy it, deconstruct it and make my own.  I searched and searched for the three things needed:  Horn, Leather or suede background, leather or suede strings.

tog suppliestogHere are the three items needed.  A piece of leather or suede; I searched for over an hour and then stumbled upon suede patches!  Just enough suede to make eight plus half moons without breaking the bank and needing to buy a bigger piece!  Then in the jewelry section I found this nice suede 1/4″ cording in several colors, (Naturally Chic).  The last thing was the surprising selection of horns from Italy in Hancock Fabrics!!

So, I measured my test toggle and determined that the strings were six inches each and were glued to the back of the half moon. I set out cutting the suede strings and half moons:

horns and  stringsuedeI used a glue that is called Tear Mender that I also found at Hancock.  It works really well and here they are coming together:

finished togsThe backs of the toggles are shown above.  Pretty simple process, I set a glass jar on top of the glued strings for a couple of minutes until they dried.  So, here is a close up of the sewn tog…I like how they turned out.

albion toggleIf you do not want to buy a toggle for the pattern, just bring a piece of paper and pencil into your store and draw around the half moon shape to use as a stencil!  I hope that helps, just think of all the shapes and colors you have at your fingertips when you get to decide!

I did not show the lining!!!! Here it is, bit of an awkward photo, but I know you will understand.


Love and happiness to everyone and to those that may be challenged with pain, keep your spirits up and take a lot of time to rest this holiday season!



Filed under Threads

4 responses to “Albion Holiday Test

  1. Great coat! Thanks so much for sharing the details of your process and your toggle instructions. At first, I didn’t even notice the proximity of the bottom toggles and the pockets–not until I read about it. So don’t give it another thought.
    Also, what a great tip about the pocket flap lining. I will remember all your tips next month when I plan to sew my own Albion. Congrats on a fine job!

    • Thank you for your comment! I had so much fun reconstructing the toggle that I wanted to share how easy and inexpensive it was. Now that my hubby has worn it, he mentioned that he would like the toggles even tighter, so I would recommend having the coat ON someone, latching the toggles and fiddling until they they are a bit snug. They have a tendency to droop a bit if not positioned correctly. Can not wait to see your coat! Happy Holidays

  2. Your coat looks fab! I just downloaded this pattern to make one for my husband. I love the outer fabric. What is it and where did you get it? Also, thanks for all the great tips on making your own toggles. I am definitely going to fashion my own!

    • Thank you! I normally shop on line for all my fabric, waiting for sales and free shipping. BUT, I was anxious to do a test and I wanted to do one out of the same type of material as the pattern calls for…wool. So I had a 40% off coupon to Hancock fabric and bought the grey wool blend there. The plaid lining was a wool blend flannel that again, I used a coupon for at JoAnn’s. My husband loves the coat although I had no idea how it would turn out, but I am planning to do another one with wool from Elliott Berman that they had on sale for $12 a yard! I love to find great fabric online for the same or less as the inferior, made in China, products that the box store carries.
      The toggles were a lot of fun and I have kept thinking of all the possibilities for the materials. M & J Trimming and Mood have great selections.
      Can’t wait to see what you do!, thanks again for commenting-

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