It kind of all started a few years ago, when I was making Catie’s wedding dress with her and Daisy was making the groom’s tweed suit. I was impressed. I mean, a tweed suit… you know you’ve arrived when you can make a tweed suit, right?
I expected it to be, you know, fine, but to look home-made, if you know what I mean. In reality it was magnificent. She said that tweed, far from being difficult and requiring years of secret knowledge acquisition, was actually really biddable and forgiving to work with.
So I threw down all my other projects and immediately went shopping for tweed. And then got distracted by other things, and years passed, and anyway, long story short, not long ago, Steven asked me about making him a tweed suit and I signed up on the spot. Nothing like a client and a deadline to sharpen the attention span.
So we went shopping, at a fantastical place, fantastically named The Fancy Silk Store (Birmingham) Ltd. and bought our tweed, a lovely, thick, brown wool tweed with rust accents. We considered silk for the lining, but I advised against it because Steven is going to actually wear this suit a lot and silk tends to perish quite quickly. We chose a deep-dark-purple-brown polyester lining that suited the fabric beautifully and will last.
I then had a bout of anxiety and imposter syndrome so bad I found ALL the excuses not to start. That lasted a few months.
But in the end I got over it and just got to work. Of course, it wasn’t nearly as bad as I was making it in my head. Things pretty much went fine, and tweed *did* turn out to be quite nice to work with.
Horse hair interfacing not so much. I think I will do some more research there.
At least half of the project, time-wise, was fiddly hand finishing. I don’t mind that so much, because while it’s tedious and time consuming, you can at least watch old episodes of Buffy while you’re doing it.
And the whole thing came together beautifully in the end. I was almost absurdly proud of it.
Even the fact that the last part, the waistcoat, had a whole string of sort-of-disasters that required whole parts to be taken apart and re-cut, and one welt pocket that got sewn together three times before I got it right.
Thursday arrived and so did Steven. I’d finished everything I could do without a final fitting, and he patiently waited for me to hem the trousers and finalise a few other things. And then, the moment of truth. See for yourself.
Steven was gratifyingly pleased, which is always nice. He says he will be wanting a lighter, summer suit as well. Hooray!
With that under my belt, I’ve decided to run a course to teach *you* how to do what I did. Join me the first week in September at I Make Everything HQ for the first ever Tweed Suit In A Week course.