Wednesday, 23 December 2020

Ankara Tamarack Jacket

My love for the Grainline Studio Tamarack jacket pattern developed slowly. As in, it took a couple of years. If this pattern was a potential partner, they would have written me off long ago! My interest grew over time, but it took the vision of an Ankara (AKA African Wax fabric) version that finally made me commit to the plan and I begun to gather supplies. Then a couple of weeks ago the time came to give back the overlocker I'd been borrowing. I looked through my list of potential sewing projects to work out what I could make next that could be made entirely on a regular sewing machine. Although the pattern suggests rather than specifically dictate to do so, I felt that binding all the bulky seam allowances would be the best way of finishing the innards. Therefore, it seemed like a good time for the Tamarack project to rise to the top of my 'to make' list. 


Last Spring, I saw a woman in a supermarket car park with a really bold puffer jacket. I can't remember exactly what it looked like, but the print reminded me of an Ankara design and my mind went straight to the potential options that were dwelling in my stash. This particularly length of Ankara fabric was brought back for me from her honeymoon in Ghana by my good friend Anna over ten years ago. She told me about the overwhelming awesomeness of the vast fabric market where she bought it, but she knows me well as she picked out the perfect print and colour way for me.  

Shortly after receiving it, I made some of the fabric into this 1950s style retro dress (pictured above). And a year or so later, whilst pregnant with my daughter, I made a dress using the Made by Rae Trillium dress pattern, then called the Washi dress pattern (pictured below). 

Historically, I have kept very few of my me-mades once I have stopped wearing them. However, I kept both of these because of how amazing this fabric it. So I harvested what I could from both, and located the final piece leftover from the original length. Even so, I had to piece the fabric together in a couple of places: around the shoulder/yoke area on both the fronts and the back pieces. I was able to pattern match pretty well, AND I was able to stitch along the joining seams during the quilting step, so I think they are effectively hidden. Finally, I pieced the scraps together to make the self-binding. There really is very little of this fabric left now!

The Tamarack pattern directs you to use the same fabric for both the inner and outer layers. Obviously that wasn't going to happen with mine due to the limited fabric, plus I wanted the ease of taking it on and off that you get with a traditional, slinky lining fabric. I got this navy viscose lining remnant from Fabric Godmother, and made bias binding from the leftovers to bind the pocket edges and all the internal seam allowances. 

The other element that I had to purchase for this project was the quilt batting/wadding. After reading the advice on the Grainline blog, I decided I wanted to source some wool batting rather than cotton for a warmer jacket, but i just couldn't find the size required (twin) in stock anywhere in the UK. As a second choice, I went with a batting made 100% from recycled plastic bottles. I flatter myself by thinking that my green-washing radar is pretty well tuned, but you wouldn't believe how thick they were laying on the 'this product basically saves the world' message in the packaging! It completely ignores how much energy is required to extract usuable polymers from that 13 discarded plastic bottles, and to turn them into quilt batting (which is then wrapped in plastic and shipped to Europe from the US). And looking at the reviews in the comments section of the website, some other customers seemed to have taken the 'I bought this and have just saved the world' perspective on board! Lols. Anyways.


As I say, I wasn't always sold on the style of the Tamarack jacket pattern. Chatting with Mr SoZo about this, I finally figured out that it reminds me of two things: A) the kind of jacket that an elderly Chinese farm worker woman might wear, and B) detachable lining that might be part of a Very Practical Coat. Once I'd made these stylistic links and the question was no longer bugging me, I was honestly much happier to go ahead with the project! 

As with almost all patterns I use, I made a couple of initial adjustments to this one. I blended between sizes at the side seams (my waist and hips usually fall into a size category that is one size larger than my bust), and pinched out about 2cm from the length of the torso on the front and back pieces to account for my short-waistedness. Being able to make these simple (and now automatic) adjustments is such a blessing, and would be worth learning how to sew for even if I didn't actually enjoy it!  

The trickiest part of the project was the welt pockets. When my batting arrived, it was thinner that I expected, but that was partly to my benefit as the construction of the pockets would no doubt have been more difficult if it was been thicker. I declared life too short to pattern match the welts, and once the binding was added to the edges, I think the mis-match of the welts looks fine. Due to the limited amount of fabric I was working with, I was able to match the pattern at the centre front, but couldn't align the colours of the design. 


I wasn't able to collect all the relevant materials for this project until recently, and because Autumnal jacket weather had passed, I'd kind of shelved the project in my mind until the Spring. However, we've had an (alarmingly) unseasonably warm couple of days lately so I got to wear this out in the world yesterday for the first time. I still feel the elderly farm worker vibes are present, but I also believe that the bold fabric print off sets those vibes enough that it looks pretty stylish. The fit is comfortable, plus the sleeves are narrow enough that it might prove a useful layer underneath my grey Cocoon coat when the temperature really drops and I want to give my Buffalo Check coat a break. 

There have been some amazing quilted coats and jackets popping up on IG recently. If a suitable quilt appeared in a charity shop, I'd be tempted to make it into another Tamarack jacket, with the quilting stage having been done for me. And even if I don't use this particular pattern again, my eyes are definitely opened to the stylistic and thermal qualities of quilted clothing! 


Jason Bennett said...

I'm so excited right now, I just have to share my testimony on this Forum.. The feeling of being loved takes away so much burden from our shoulders. I had all this but I made a big mistake when I cheated on my wife with another woman  and my wife left me for over 4 months after she found out..  I was lonely, sad and devastated. Luckily I was directed to a very powerful spell caster Dr Emu who helped me cast a spell of reconciliation on our Relationship and he brought back my wife and now she loves me far more than ever.. I'm so happy with life now. Thank you so much Dr Emu, kindly Contact  Dr Emu Today and get any kind of help you want.. Website ( Via Email or Call/WhatsApp cell number  +2347012841542 

Deborah Ken said...

ALL THANKS TO DOCTOR0LOVESPELL I have been in bondage ever since my ex leave for another woman, It was really hell for me and everybody told me to forget about him but i could not because i love him so much, Things get worse until my friend introduced me to this great spell caster Dr. 0love who have save so many life and relationships and i contacted him through his email or whatsapp him on: +12017812375 i explain everything to him and he cast a spell for me immediately after 24 hours, everything turn around and my boyfriend came back to me on his knee begging for forgiveness that i am the one and only woman in his life now. i was surprise i have never seen such a miracle in my life. I am so thankful to this man and i will forever publish his name Dr 0love visit his FB page: or view his website:

Rose Mile said...

Getting your lover or your ex back has been made more easy by this powerful spell caster called Dr Odion. I am Rose by name and i am from canada, the only reason why i am on this site is to thank this powerful spell caster called DR. Odion and you can improve your relationship success by contacting him through these details ( Or call +2348136482342) This powerful spell caster did me a huge favor by helping me get my lover back to me within the speed of light and since then my relationship has been perfect.

any problem of yours.He is specialized in the following:

(1)Spell for protection from danger
(2)Spell for magic
(3)Spell for same sex love
(4)Spell for healing
(5)Spell for invisibility
(6)Spell for riches and fame
(7)Spell to get a good job
(8)Spell for strong love and relationship
(9)Spell to bring your ex back
(10)speII for Lottery
This man has great powers and is incredibly generous.You can contact him on

nat king cole said...

Am here to testify what this great spell caster done for me. i never believe in spell casting, until when i was was tempted to try it. i and my wife have been having a lot of problem living together, she will always not make me happy because she have fallen in love with another man outside our relationship, i tried my best to make sure that my wife leave this woman but the more i talk to her the more she makes me fell sad, so my marriage is now leading to divorce because she no longer gives me attention. so with all this pain and agony, i decided to contact this spell caster to see if things can work out between me and my wife again. this spell caster who was a man told me that my wife is really under a great spell that she have been charm by some magic, so he told me that he was going to make all things normal back. he did the spell on my wife and after 5 days my wife changed completely she even apologize with the way she treated me that she was not her self, i really thank this man his name is Dr ose he have bring back my wife back to me i want you all to contact him who are having any problem related to marriage issue and relationship problem he will solve it for you. his email is he is a man and his great. wish you good time.
He cast spells for different purposes like
(1) If you want your ex back.
(2) if you always have bad dream
(3) You want to be promoted in your office.
(4) You want women/men to run after you.
(5) If you want a child.
(6) You want to be rich.
(7) You want to tie your husband/wife to be yours forever.
(8) If you need financial assistance.
(10) is the only answer to that your problem of winning the lottery

Contact him today on or whatsapp him on +2348136482342

Anonymous said...

Five weeks ago my boyfriend broke up with me. It all started when i went to summer camp i was trying to contact him but it was not going through. So when I came back from camp I saw him with a young lady kissing in his bed room, I was frustrated and it gave me a sleepless night. I thought he will come back to apologies but he didn't come for almost three week i was really hurt but i thank Dr.Azuka for all he did i met Dr.Azuka during my search at the internet i decided to contact him on his email he brought my boyfriend back to me just within 48 hours i am really happy. What’s app contact : +44 7520 636249‬

Brittany Seiber said...

To know more about Chief Dr Lucky you can visit his website (
 A friend that suffered from Herpes and was cure with the help of this great herbal doctor (Chief Lucky) so i decided to contact him for help in getting rid of my families genital herpes virus 1/2 which i did and all i was told to provide was just some useful information and some materials used in preparation of the natural cure and that i did and now i am the happiest person on earth because i am writing this testimony of mine with joy and happiness in my heart to the whole world to know that natural remedy is real because i am a living testimony of Chief Lucky traditional herbal cure and i want you all to contact Chief Lucky via his email: or WhatsApp him +2348132777335 am sure he will help you too.

deja merald said...

Its a real miracle Till today i still imagine how dr 0love brought back my man after he had vowed never to set his eyes on me again. he had even set the date for his wedding with another woman before i contacted dr 0love.
He told me to leave everything to him because i told him if the wedding takes place i would commit suicide.
After he cast the spell for me my man came back to me and said he wants to still marry on that date and the woman he wants is me and am so happy to announce that our wedding is coming up in 2 weeks time and i am still in contact with dr 0love till date because he is a very powerful man and a man to be trusted. CONTACT DR 0LOVE ON email: OR whatsapp him on: +1 (201) 781-2375 You can also visit his FB page:  or view his website:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...