After sleeping on it, I decided that the coat wasn't worth finishing. Even if it ended up looking okay - not a certainty by any means - there were enough places where it had gotten distorted that I would have known it wasn't okay, even if no one else noticed. So I decided to give my first Ottobre pattern a try, and cut the split-front miniskirt (#7) from the 5/2016 issue out of the plaid-ish ponte I'd used for the body of the coat.
There are things that could be better - for example, it didn't take a press as well as could be ideal, and that shows in the seam between the yoke and the skirt. But even so, this feels like a success, even if it's likely to spend more time in my closet than on me. And who knows, if I can make leggings that actually fit me right and stay opaque all the way up, maybe shorter skirts will play a bigger role in my wardrobe this fall and winter.
I made a size 48, based on my waist and hip measurements of 35" and 44" (or 46" if I use the accomadate-your-tummy method.) The fit isn't 100% perfect - I'm not sure if the lines in the front picture are drag lines or just because of how I'm standing - but it's fully wearable.
So thanks to a very satisfying little project after a week of struggles, thing-a-week week 1 is a success! I'm not sure yet what to plan for week 2. The coat failure has made me a bit intimidated by the prospect of trying something else well outside my realm of experience, but I do still need a transitional jacket, and have both pattern and fabric picked out for one. But this time, a muslin for sure.