In addition to my red raincoat, I decided that I wanted to take a regular coat on my travels with me, and I wanted to make it from fabric in my stash. I had some ponte in various colours and settled on black or ivory as both colours are really useful in the winter. But which colour to choose? OK, I wanted both, so a reversible coat was a no-brainer. Then came the pattern decision, and the Tessuti Sydney Jacket won the day.
Here is my coat being modelled outside Christ Church College in Oxford.
This coat is warm, comfortable, doesn’t crease, and is washable. Here it is in the Christ Church quadrangle.
The Sydney jacket is an open coat, but I wanted something I could fasten. I made it before and fastened it with a clasp, but because this is reversible, I needed something more flexible. I decided to use some lovely snaps that I bought in Iceland.
I am sure that these are readily available everywhere, but I have never seen them before or since. They are perfect for this coat, and I have tucked them in under the collar so they are not at all visible. This building is the Radcliffe Camera which is a science library designed by James Gibbs in neo-classical style and built in 1737–1749
A sort of back view, still in the grounds of Christ Church College.
There is a Harry Potter trail at Oxford, and we didn’t realise it, but we went to a few of the most famous locations. This is the great hall, which they used as inspiration for the Hogwarts dining hall.
I am gazing in wonder at portraits, but also some amazing stained glass. The window below depicts Alice in Wonderland (Lewis Carroll was a graduate of Christ Church). Can you see Alice and Charles Dodgson (aka Lewis Carroll)? Can you see all the characters in the book at the bottom of the window? I thought this was extraordinary.
There is a door at Oxford which inspired Narnia, but sadly it was hidden by builders. I was so disappointed. However, this gorgeous staircase features in the Harry Potter film. How wonderful is that vaulted ceiling?
And the white side of the coat do I hear you ask? Well, I wore it for yet another visit to Blenheim Palace, and teamed with a cloche style hat, giving it a slightly 1920s air (or does it give it a slightly daggy air??)
I am posing in front of the Victory Column erected by Queen Anne in 1705 in honour of the 1st Duke of Marlborough.
All I did to make this coat reversible was to sew two coats and then sew them together. The issue is with the raw edges and keeping both sides level. I pondered this for a while as I am not the cleanest cutter, so I took the needles out of my overlocker and used the cutting blade to go round the whole coat, thereby creating the cleanest edge I could. It also had the effect of making both sides very level.
And a slightly closer view with the bridge in the background as the sun sets through it. I love that bridge! A bit of trivia: the bridge has 30 rooms in it, but Capability Brown flooded the lower levels to make the Great Lake even greater!
A side note on this coat – I can fit a lot of clothes under it, which is useful as it’s getting pretty chilly here, and I have gloves stuffed in the pockets, hence those bulges (they’re not me, I promise!)
And just to finish this post, I thought I’d put up a couple of photos of the grounds at Blenheim Palace; the light was lovely and created some beautiful photos.
And finally, Blenheim being dressed up for Christmas.
Note: both ponte fabrics were from Knitwit. I am wearing black ponte Stylearc Elle pants, fabric also from Knitwit.