I’ve knocked off a few more garments for my winter work-at-home wardrobe – all designed to look good on videoconferences while being ease to sew, take care of, and comfy.
First up – the Harper Cardigan/Jacket from Style Arc.
I bought this poly-rayon-spandex ponte some years ago, intending to make a dress for work with it. Then I realized I didn’t want to wear something so hot and heavy, not to mention raspberry pink, so the ponte went back into the stash.
I figured I could use 1.5 yards of it to try this simple jacket, which I got for free from Style Arc when I bought something else. Three pieces – what could go wrong?
Sometimes I feel like I am hypercritical of commercial sewing patterns. But there’s no overlooking the sheer number of odd things in this.
Issue #1 is the center-back seam, which you’re supposed to sew as a French seam since it can be seen from the outside.
Good luck sewing a French seam on a heavy fabric such as ponte. A flat-felled seam seemed more suitable, so that’s what I did (added .5 cm seam allowance to provide for a bit of extra room).
Then there’s the finishing issue. This has no facings or anything – in fact the pattern says you can leave the edges raw if you want to. I did not want to. I mean, that’s just dumb. So I dug out the manual for my serger and did a three-thread “rolled wave” treatment on the edges.
Then there’s the closure issue. This pattern originally came with some jumbo hook-and-eyes – you set the hooks in the shoulders and the eyes on the tips of the fronts. Since there’s no facing or anything to hide the hooks, the pattern provides a postage-stamp sized patch you’re meant to sew on to cover where the hooks are sewn on.
This is the laziest things I ever heard of. The design could have benefitted from a rethink – maybe a button and loop or a decorative tie would have made more sense? I played around with various fixes before saying the heck with it and sewing on ordinary hook and eyes.
Here it is closed, and you can see how the front pulls against the hook and eye on my shoulder. I will buy some larger hook and eyes when I get around to it – maybe – and try it again.
The next garment is a simple t-shirt out of a lovely rayon/spandex blend. This is Jalie 2805 – a pattern pack of four T-shirt options (jewel neck, V neck, mock turtleneck or Henley).
I like this pattern for the fit and ease of construction. I plan to whip up a few more this winter.
Finally, I made a pair of the Jalie Eleonore Jeans – a pull-on style made out of woven fabric with at least 20% stretch. These don’t take a lot of fabric, so I had plenty left over from my shorts project this summer to try a full-length pair.
The shorts were tight at the knee so I thought I’d made flares for my full-length pair. This is a simple change – just slash up the center to just above the knee, cut into each side to create a hinge for the leg, and spread.
I added length at the hem also. No picture of the finished project, sorry, but they are comfortable and look nicer than a pair of yoga pants for working at home.
I now have half of my six projects done! (Well, technically that dress is not done but I just cannot with it right now).
What should I do next?