Often us home-sewers focus on increasingly complicated makes as we push our skills and learn new techniques, but sometimes it’s nice to go back to the start and see how far we’ve come. This sleeveless hoodie was the first sewing pattern I ever bought, back when I thought that because t-shirts looked simple, jersey must be the easiest fabric to work with, ha! In fact, this pattern made me give up sewing for years and years until I actually went to a nightclass and learned properly.
As usual I was attracted to some bold colours, and I picked these two contrasting jerseys, one in teal and the other in coral orange. Both fabrics have folds and tucks that give a 3D texture in an almost ripple design. I sewed all of the seams directly on my overlocker, and then did some twin-needle top stitching for details. It was a little more effort, but I switched thread colour when topstitching to match the thread to each section of the fabric.
I actually ignored the pattern instructions for the armhole binding—the instructions said to add the binding before sewing up the sideseams, but this would’ve left visible, lumpy seams in the underarm. Instead I made the circular binding separately and attached to the armhole after sewing the sideseams.
I played around with the hood positioning, bringing it forward slightly to get a crossover effect. The drawstring is not part of the pattern, but I knew it would be easy to add, with a couple of button holes in the hood for threading the chunky cord.
These cool cord ends are solid metal and add a nice weight to the drawstring. One piece of advice, always buy more length than you think you need for drawstrings, bias binding, etc. I got a metre of the cord thinking it would be way more than I needed, but I ended up using 95cm of it, and that was for the smallest size.
I lined the hoodie in the contrast fabric so it is much more substantial in weight and sits better than a single layer of jersey. The underside of the yokes are also lined for some extra structure.
I made a feature of my new labels, for a slightly sporty edge. Now all we need is a little more sunshine and it’ll be the perfect top for a summer picnic in the park.
Have you ever gone back to your first garment/pattern—one that either inspired or terrified you? If not, it’s definitely something to think about—I found the process quite fun, and a little bit nostalgic…
Until next time, happy sewing!
Duncan
xx