October 23, 2010

The awesome power of pattern tetris

Today, I'm once more making something from re-purposed leather (just like the short-sleeved jacket in the banner). And I'm not using just any old piece of leather clothing this time, oh no.

Last year, my boyfriend finally decided to throw out his old leather coat. It was really necessary, the top layer of the leather had been completely worn down in some places and little bits of the surface of the pockets had been torn. However, it was also the coat he had been wearing all the time when we started dating (almost 8 years ago now). And every winter since.
So, because I had already found out about the advantages of re-using old leather garments, I claimed it. Apart from the wear, this coat had another major disadvantage: it was made up from quite a lot of pieces and the front was full of pockets and closure-construction. As a result, that big coat didn't yield a lot raw material for me to work with.

The leather from the coat sat in my stash for quite some time. I wanted to make something good from it. Something I would wear. A lot.
A while ago, I finally made some sketches which came close.

A short jacket, with armhole princess seams, long sleeves and a big collar. The real thing will have a zipper in the left princess seam.

A short shell with princess seams was easy enough to make. The collar was hard to do either. Then came the difficult part: how to cut that jacket out of all those small pieces of leather...
Enter the powers of pattern tetris:

I will also use some black wool from my stash for the sides at the back, the sleeves and part of the collar.


  1. excuse my ignorance. what is pattern tetris?

  2. It's a joke. Tetris is an old-fashioned computer game which is a sort of puzzle with falling blocks. Like the blocks in tetris, I had to fit my pattern pieces as closely together as I could.

  3. Oh, this looks exciting! Gotta love pattern tetris :). With leather, at least you don't have to worry so much about grain, right? (Or wrong? I haven't sewed with leather since I stopped making barbie clothes, long before I even knew what a grain-line was...) I love the crazy collar!

  4. You have my attention. I am looking forward to seeing the end product very much.