I’m about a year late to the game with the Hemlock Tee, but I have to say, Grainline Studio hit it out the park with this *free* PDF pattern. At first I was a little freaked out by the one-size-fits-all cut, but since it’s designed for lightweight knits, this top’s really all about the boxy drape. And what a gloriously comfortable drape it is! It’d probably be even more flowy if I hadn’t accidentally cut off an extra 2″–3″ from the hem. Whoops. I made that mistake when trying to even out the bottom with a rotary cutter, not realizing that the stripes were ever so slightly offset. Long story short, this quickly turned into a cropped Hemlock, and I love it!
Most of my pants hit high enough that I don’t have to worry about flashing skin (it’s fall now, the time when us Chicagoans put away our bare skin until next spring). As far as construction, I used my walking foot and a lightning bolt stitch for the side seams. To finish the bottom and sleeves, I just did a simple turned hem with a slightly lengthened straight stitch. Next time, I’ll try a double-needle finish like the tutorial instructs.
I cut the neckline down a little lower than the pattern, which lead to some problems with the neckband binding. I thought I’d added enough length to compensate, but I had to rip out my first neckband and try again. Does anyone have a surefire formula for calculating neckband length? I know it probably differs depending on the level of stretch, but any tips are welcome!
I have high hopes to whip a few of these up for Christmas gifts, but for now, I’m focusing solely on HALLOWEEN. Halloween is kind of a big deal for me. Ever since I can remember, my mom’s always been a champ when it comes to whipping up creative costumes. As a toddler, I was a hand-sewn furry spider. In second grade, I was the R.M.S. Titanic.
There were many more, but that cardboard ship remains the costume to top. Bravo, Mom & Dad in 1998.
Last year marked the first time I sewed my own costume, a spring roll. It took forever, but it was gratifying to know I made the entire piece on my own. This year, I’ve decided to capitalize on my current haircut and go as Johnny Depp as Willy Wonka. And since my boyfriend is blond and light-eyed, naturally I suggested that he be Gene Wilder’s Willy Wonka. I’m planning on sewing the coats, possibly making the hats and canes, and then throwing together the rest of the outfit with items we already own.
I found this McCall’s pattern for $5 on Etsy and immediately snapped it up. It’s not exactly the style of the Wonka jackets, but I think it’s close enough to pass if we get the accessories right. (And the candy. We’re only allowed to hand out Wonka Candy, otherwise WHAT’S THE POINT?!) The pattern calls for a mid-weight wool or gabardine, but I’m hoping that it’ll work with these mid-weight corduroys I found at Textile Discount Outlet:
At just $3.95/yard, they were way cheaper than anything I could find online, especially when you take into account shipping charges. By the way, Textile Discount Outlet is an old-school fabric labyrinth that definitely deserves a visit if you’re even in Chicago. It’s not glamorous, but it does have an insane number of fabrics, notions, and everything in between.
I just got my pattern in the mail today and can’t wait to get started on these goofy jackets. Do you have any Halloween projects in the works? Let me know in the comments!