Sunday, April 22, 2018

The Jessi Hoodie

Ages ago - I feel like maybe as far back as late fall - one of the sewing groups I belong to on Facebook was hosting a sew along for the Jessi Hoodie by CoEmi.  I snapped up the pattern, bought the paper needed to print it off (It's a European pattern so required A4 - I made do with 8 1/2 x 14 " to accommodate the extra length needed and it worked just fine), printed and then assembled it all in short order.  Then proceeded to have zero time to sit down and trace the pattern out, add seam allowances and cut fabric out, let alone sew it up.  So it sat in a big pile on top of my desk until the beginning of March.

I've seen this pattern everywhere on Facebook for months now. It seems like ALL the custom fabric group sewists are especially crazy about it.  I really liked the look of it and thought it would be perfect for work, so I finally dragged my roll of tracing paper out and set to the business of tracing and adding seam allowances to all the bits and bobs.  It really wasn't an onerous task and now that it's done and I'm so happy with how it turned out I wonder why on earth I waited so long, other than time was, as always, at a premium.

I decided that my peached herringbone jersey from Blended Thread Fabrics would be great for the main fabric and instead of buying a co-ordinate for the rest, I decided to make do by utilizing as much of the charcoal Fabric Snob jersey from my ill fated New Horizons Vermont cardi that I'd made earlier in the year. (You never saw that one.  It was a complete fit disaster on me.  I don't know why I strayed from my beloved Blackwood Cardi in the first place).  So the cowl contrast was cut from the back of the cardi, the front side panels from the cardi fronts.  I cut the cuffs off and used them as is, and did the same with the cardi bottom band, so cuffs and band weren't exactly as the pattern measures, but did the trick nicely. I was pleased that the only "waste" left over from the cardi was the front bands which were so bizarrely stretched out of shape they were garbage anyway, and the sleeves, which I'll save for contrast on something for the little boys.

I have really loved wearing this top and reach for it so very often on cooler days, so I thought I'd make another version.  This time I used a panel from the custom print company, Midnight Mountain Fabrics which is located in the city. Being from the flat as flat can be prairies, I've always been drawn to the mountains. Some might even call it obsessed with them. I love their majesty, ruggedness and beauty, so I couldn't resist the panel when the pre-order went up a few months ago.  I combined it again with a jersey solid from The Fabric Snob.  This time since I was starting out from scratch I used the pattern pieces for the cuffs and measurements for the bottom band.  I like the bottom band's width, but the cuffs feel just a bit too long and too snug for my liking.  I'd probably like just an extra quarter of an inch width and a 1/4 of an inch shorter for my personal preference.  I'm not sure if it's the difference in fabric, or if I totally used the wrong seam allowance (How on earth do you do that when you're the one that added the seam allowance in the first place...The mind.  It boggles sometimes! LOL), but this one turned out really relaxed and verging on baggy.  I've taken it in some on the side seams and will wait until it's gone through the wash a couple of times in case it shrinks then I may leave it in it's still "relaxed fit" state, or may take it in more - I just feel that the minute I take it in, is the minute that it's going to shrink like a beast in the wash and I'm going to be living in a world of so much regret.  So for the time being it stays as is.

I used the "BIG Jessi" pattern. (Wow!  Not sure how I feel about the naming of the pattern - thanks for pointing out the obvious there CoEmi, because we larger ladies might not realize we're bigger than your regular pattern size range already.  But whatever.  Slight annoyance aside, I wasn't going to let myself be put off by that.  Maybe it's a translation thing.  I don't know.) As for the nitty gritty pattern details, the fit is pretty good (if you follow your seam allowance choice you made...), and it's a nice flattering design.  It has one heck of a huge cowl - if you feel the need to hide your head in a shell like a turtle, this is your pattern. LOL!

Or if you'd rather, there's a nice big hood option as well. You also have options to put in pockets (I didn't bother) and if you're a nursing mama, the pattern tells you how to add hidden zippers along the princess seam lines to make it breastfeeding friendly. Certainly not a feature I'd need anymore, but might be quite handy for others.  I like that you can mix and match fabrics and that it's a perfect way to use those fun custom print panels that are all over the internet that I seem to be acquiring but haven't previously had a hot clue what to do with.

I'm am pretty much delighted with both my versions and am currently pondering if I should make a third version, but this time with french terry and just a regular jewel neckline instead of hood or cowl.  Although, the weather has been glorious, so maybe I should just turn my thoughts to spring sewing instead... we shall see!

Monday, April 16, 2018

Ooops! I Did It Again...

So.  It happened.  I didn't mean for it to happen, but there you have it.  I had some jersey in my stash begging to be sewn up and really, I should have grabbed a different pattern, because I think it is likely just a teensy bit possible that one should branch out and sew something different once in a while.  However, these days sewing time is limited and the pattern was sitting right there on top of the pile of patterns and Oooops!  I did it again.  I further added to my already overly extensive Molly Top collection.

I can't even say anything about it because once you've sewn something ten or eleven times and you've talked about it eight or nine times previously there's just not a whole lot left to say.

So lets talk about these recent fabric choices instead.

The first one is an oh so very soft poly/rayon/spandex jersey from The Fabric Snob.  It's drapey and did I mention oh so soft?  I did my short sleeved, v-neck mod for my Molly because it's currently my favourite way to sew it up.  (admittedly because for whatever reason I can easily sew a v-neck shaped band on a neckline, whereas doing a regular one I seem to manage to mess up every single time.WHY?!?! Its like the fact I can't make Kraft Dinner.  Or Jello.  I don't know... I'm just weird that way I guess.)

Sew Over It Molly Top

The second one is a jersey of unknown specification that I snagged a year or more ago out of the clearance bin at Fabricland.  It has Llamas on it.  You know I couldn't leave it behind.  But there is precisely no drape to it and somewhat less stretch than desired.  Plus there's just something about wearing an entire tee covered in Llamas (or maybe they're Alpacas - I'll have to check out their ears and decide from there I guess) that felt just a little bit too quirky.  But it does make one heck of a fine pyjama top.  And if you've got a top?  Well, quite frankly you might as well make bottoms (I used the Halla Patterns sleep shorts pattern  and they took all of ten minutes to whip up by the by).  So win win!  I got to use my llama/alpaca fabric, I got to sew another Molly top, and I have new summer pyjammies!

Sew Over It Molly Top

Now I'm going to try and take a bit of a break from Molly for a while, but honestly? I really can't make any promises...