Lekala love

What’s not to love about a sewing pattern website that offers tonnes of patterns for $2.50 at worst? And 50c to add seam allowances?

Sandra introduced me to Lekala patterns in December. 
I was like ‘Are you sure about these patterns?‘ 
And Sandra said ‘Yes. Try on this exercise top for size.’ 
and I was like “Mmmm?” Sandra’s right. Sandra has the knack for pattern/fabric brilliance. 
Sandra’s a sewing technical wizard. I mean, she won last year’s Tessutis gridlock contest.
So I was thinking, “mmm. I’d love a new, cool jacket for the weekend‘. 
Not that I need a jacket. And  I wanted a pdf  pattern ‘toot sweet’. 
So off I go, Lekala looking and spotted something close to what I wanted and ‘bazinga’ out of the ether it came.

You’ll notice I’ve changed this to a v-neckline and added welt pockets. This bomber jacket works nicely with my purple pins. DH advised me to add shoulder pads and I did.

I’ll tighten the waistband ribbing by 1/3 on the next version. There is another version in the pipeline.

How’z that” for a sixer. A workable pattern for $2.50 from Lekala patterns.

Talk about a sewing diversion…
PS. This jacket is my wearable muslin so it’ll be thrown around a lot.

Technical stuff:

  • Remnant denim with woven lines of roses in the fabric.
  • Poly rib knit used on the cuffs, welt pockets, waistband and neckline.
  • Polka dot poly chiffon used for the lining and pockets (John Kaldor)
  • Open ended zipper used as the closure.
  • Shortened the sleeve length.
  • Round neck adjusted to V-neckline.

Feet to sew with
Making this jacket takes a bit of experience. What I mean by this is you’ll need to plan to use more than your standard sewing foot.
You’ll need to use your zipper foot and a foot to ‘stitch in the ditch’ with.
Topstitching is one of the cool features on a bomber jacket.

Choosing a rib knit
If the rib knit you use has no elasticity, add soft, wide elastic inside the rib knit.
Check the rib knit you use feels soft on your skin. This knit sits on your skin so if it’s scratchy, don’t buy it.

Also, don’t worry about buying an open ended zipper to size. I had to buy a 50cm zipper but I made sure the bottom end was sewn onto the jacket and I trimmed the top of the zipper to fit this jacket. I only needed a 25cm open ended zipper for this jacket once I made the neckline a v-shape. There’s no way I would have found ‘the right zipper’ in time. I bought my zipper from MyHung for $2.50.

BBQ shirt for DH

I think DH has been waiting for a shirt from me for a while now. He never asks for anything custom made, I find shirts with a missing button appear in my sewing room from time to time, or a tie that needs mending, but he never asks for new clothes. His eyes sparkled when he saw the fabric I chose for his shirt because he loves to travel, he loves to plan travel and is always ready to do a BBQ.

So I then chose an easy shirt style (Simplicity 5581) that I know DH would wear. Sewsewboy on PR has done many of these shirts in some amazing prints.

I did buy extra fabric to see if I could match the patterns but this didn’t happen. The patch pocket was not going to work so I ended up opting to put a welt pocket onto this shirt.

The main pattern adjustment was shirt length and as I’ve now seen this pattern is quiet full so next shirt will be small and not medium. Sewsewboy mentioned this in his pattern review.

As my friend Alison (Goosegreen) knows, it’s very difficult to match aqua fabric let alone get the matching thread. She kindly gave me the aqua linen piece I needed for this pocket. The aqua welt stands out and DH loves it. I’ve reinforced this pocket throughout construction and also finished the pocket edges with a single fold and tight zigzag stitching. Using Sandra Betzina’s Power Sewing book and having Angie Zimmerman’s guidance at her Sydney workshop helped me get this pocket detail right.

White thread and covered buttons are this shirt’s finishing details. I’ve also used armoweft for the interfacing and flat felled seams because this shirt will need as much reinforcing as possible because it’s a bloke’s shirt. DH asked for wooden buttons that I’ll now start looking for.

At some point, I’ll attempt the shorts when I do some more research on sewing for men. What have I created? I think DH loves this shirt.
I’ll also add single welt pockets to the Minoru jacket that I’ve finally cut out after 10 hours of muslim and adjusting the sleeves and collar fit. It’s been ages since I’ve done welt pockets so like fly fronts, the more you do, the easier the result.