Side Seams and Back Lining.
Looking at previous blog posts it appears that we have no information on the side seams. This is probably because it is not as photogenic as some of the other processes however it is just as important to do correctly as any error will result in a jacket that pulls and distorts. Generally, any problems on the inside of a jacket will severely affect the outside.
So, when the jacket comes back from a fitting we rip it down and if the facings are already finished we get to work remarking any alterations which the cutter has indicated and then attaching the back. The most common alterations are to alter the waist, chest and seat. This is marked along the side seam and the vent marked if there are side vents.
I will then press the back and attach a small strip of linen around the edge of the arm hole at the back. The back armhole is where the cloth will be on the bias so it needs to be supported so it won’t stretch out or fray. The back lining is then folded along the centre to make a pleat. When putting on the jacket this fold will open slightly making it easier to put the jacket on and prevent the lining from tearing. The lining is then basted to the cloth back piece, distributing a slight amount off fullness. The lining should then be able to move within the jacket when finished.
The front is then placed facing down onto the table and the back basted onto the side seams and stitched (matching any checks). When pressing the side seam it is crucial to keep the back straight and the front pulled around to open up the waist so that the final seam will lay flat and sit comfortably against the body. The excess cloth left in the jacket for any future alterations will need to be carefully pressed so that it does not pull.
The vent is then stitched closed with a neat diagonal line of hand stitching and the front lining basted down onto the back lining. Fullness is mainly distributed into the waist section for ease of movement. The hems are tacked up by hand and linings are then felled by hand after the jacket is completely finished.