Thursday 13 May 2021

Not quite summer

There is a saying in Scotland "Ne'er cast a clout till May's out!" which basically means May might be officially a Summer month but that doesn't mean it will be warm :)  

I have had some softshell fleece sitting in my sewing room taunting me every time I walked past it for a couple of months now. Given the less than summery weather we have been having lately it seemed like the perfect time to finally break out of my comfort zone and make the rainjackets for the grandsons that I have been dithering over.



I did it! It was definitely a challenge working with a fabric that doesn't take kindly to pins or ironing (I found that one out the hard way!) but the end result was worth it. That is not to say the jackets are perfect by any means but fortunately their owners are not bothered by the imperfections :)

The pattern is once again from Ottobre Design in the 4/20 issue so I have been procrastinating over making this for several months as you can see. 

The original pattern includes a hood that can be attached and detached with snaps and I did intend to make them too, but when I came to that stage I realised that the layers of the collar were a bit too thick for the snaps. I managed to fit one snap at the front but only just so rather than tempt providence I cut my losses and did without the hoods. Next time I will trim the seam allowances inside the collar stand so that I have a bit more room to work with! 

You can see one of my other problems in the photo above, the two sides of the separating zip (a first for me!) are attached separately and I managed to get the alignment slightly out of sync on the bigger of the two jackets. It meant that, originally, the zip was sticking at the top where it was overshooting the teeth on one side but some vicious pulls with pliers to remove another tooth on the higher side and oversewing the ends eventually sorted that out. I have never had to shorten a zip by removing the teeth before, it was not quite as quick and easy as the YouTube tutorials make it seem :)

There are several zips on these jackets, as well as the front zip closure each of the two pockets have zipped closures too. Installing a zip without pins or the ability to iron the fabric was pretty nerve-wracking I can tell you. I am really pleased with how they turned out given how much winging it went on in their construction!


I try to avoid changing the threads on my overlocker as much as possible, because it is a bit of a faff, but I couldn't resist using this lovely rainbow thread for the jackets and I think it looks great, don't you? 

Two perfectly matching bright zip pulls from  Northwest Knots to finish the jackets and they were ready to send off.

I am pleased to report that they both fit their recipients (always a worry when I try a new pattern) and have been thoroughly tested in an extensive puddle jumping test, which they passed with flying colours :) 

Now on to some t-shirts and shorts for when May's out :)


  1. The Jackets are great - well done! And a great bodge to equalise the zip! I’ve been swapping the zipper pulls and /or using teeth from two different zips to make them a bit funky- fun but fiddly! The pocket zips - without pinning? look fab! The trim works really well!

    trim zip pocket pull

  2. Oh these are adorable! I absolutely love them, how cute must the boys have looked whilst carrying out the puddle test!

  3. Hi, I hopped to you from somewhere? That raincoat fabric, a few tears ago I made an awning from nylon tent fabric for Hugh, to go on the back of his camping trailer, The upholstered, canvas man suggested to use double sided sticky tape, outside the stitching line, and that made it a lot easier. I had to remember not to have it too close to where the needle went. Pins just would not go through. Love all your goodies for the grandsons. My Mum was born in Cambuslang, in Lanarkshire and came to New Zealand in 1909 when she was 6. Her Dad was a tailor, my Mum was a professional dressmaker before she trained as a psychiatric nurse.She sewed everything for me, the cow covers, the boat cushions and my wedding gown.


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