1994: I had finally completed Nancy Mirman’s Kandu Coat. cover_kanducoat1 I chose my sister’s favorite colors, teal-green and purple, for the top of the jacket and gradually darkened the jacket to navy and black at the bottom so she could wear it with either color for work. (Well, okay, it really isn’t corporate enough…)

I enlarged the pattern slightly by choosing strips that were about 1/4 inch wider than the pattern suggested. I was on a mission to use all types of fabrics styles in my projects, so you can see all sorts of oddities if you look closely at the choices. My only regret is using a rayon challis print. Otherwise the fabrics are all cotton. The base fabric was a miswoven tattersall oxford shirting that I must have found on the 50 cent table at Hancock’s in the mid 1980s when I was so strapped for cash that I was vulnerable to the call of inexpensive but truly weird fabrics… lol. In any case, I had several major surgeries from 1993-94 so I had plenty of couch time to view this on the ‘design wall’ (a flannel covered cutting mat leaned against a chair.)


You can see a bit of the silk lining above the label I put on the inside back hem band. The jacquard lining is very comfortable and made me vow to always use silk to line jackets.



I added shoulder pads between the jacket and the lining to keep the jacket in position on my sister’s sloping/forward shoulders. Currently I’m the one who wears this jacket even though the colors are not the most flattering. The shoulder pads are somewhat too large and positioned too far forward for me, but I haven’t been worried about it enough to change them yet. If I were ever inclined to make another Kandu Coat / jacket just for me, I would lengthen both the body and the sleeves. Even with the cuffs folded down, the sleeves on this jacket don’t reach my wrists.

One fun and unexpected aspect of this jacket is that you can store small objects in the underarm area of the sleeve. This is a common thing, I think, with kimono, but this pattern doesn’t have that bag-shaped sleeve, so I was surprised to find how secure things were when stashed there. lol.