There must be something in the air, because I know of several sewing friends who all made this pattern recently!
It’s the Tessuti Berlin Jacket, which is a cardigan/kimono style boxy shape. Tessuti is well-known for having several of these unlined modern jackets that are constructed with overlapping raw seams, instead of traditional right-sides-together seams. The examples I’ve seen made in boiled wool of heavier wools look transitional coats (not for proper winter, but for weather just above freezing). My two versions (yup, another one is below) are more like cardigans because I chose lighter fabric.
The first thing I have to say is that I liked this pattern, but it’s not as unique as I expected. For this ponte version I just serged it together like a normal cardigan, and I think the end result looks a lot like many other patterns. If you already own the Paprika Opal, the Named Esme Maxi Cardigan, or any other boxy drop-sleeved cardigan, then you don’t really need this pattern.
That said, it was fun to sew! I graded from a L at the shoulders to something slightly larger than the XL at the hips. I wanted to fit to be boxy but not massively oversized, because I plan to wear this like a cardigan. Tessuti’s size range has always been a bit disappointing, but I’m happy that they have recently released two patterns in “plus sizes“, aka. size 18-22. On their website they say they’ll continue to release larger sized patterns.
The star of the show here is this amazing jaquard double knit! It is a discount end from Fabricland, and came in two .7m cuts. That basically decided how long my jacket would be, although I did manage to extend things with some piecing in the collar and a banded hem for extra length. This fabric and pattern fit into my goal to dress more boldly – I felt good in it all day at work after taking these pictures!
Here’s what the jacket looks like inside out – I thought it might help to show the style lines and construction! The wrong side of this jaquard is pretty amazing! In real life it’s a bit too green-gold to flatter my skin, but I like the flashes of colour when the jacket opens.
Speaking of fabric that is great on both sides… My first version was supposed to highlight this bonded scuba-and-grey-marl-knit fabric I also got at Fabricland this year.
Royal blue is one of my favourite colours, and I really thought this was going to be awesome… but halfway through making it, I realised that the polyester sheen of the blue was never going to look luxe!
I think all in all, the fabric is just a bit thin for this pattern, and so it drapes and hangs wrong. It’s not awful, but I don’t get a spring in my step when I put it on! I could undo a few seams and make the whole thing reversible, or make the grey side the “right” side… but I’m not sure that shapeless light grey will be any more successful.
I did do the proper overlapping seams on this version though, and it was fun to try. I used chalk to draw a line on the wrong side of the fabric, and made sure the overlapping fabric lined up perfectly while I sewed. This made it all pretty easy, and it’s wasn’t as fiddly as I feared!
So… could I count this as my #sewingdare from Caroline and Helen at Love To Sew to make a coat? I know it’s the very simplest version of outerwear, but I hope it *just* sneaks into the category!
Whether or not these jackets get some wear or lots of wear, I’m happy to have sewn them! I used up stash fabric, tried a pattern I’ve wondered about for years, and had a fun couple of hours of sewing. (Update: I wore this all weekend as a sort of robe layer over pyjamas, and it was great!)
Have you sewn any any Tessuti patterns? I love the Isla top and the free Mandy Boat tee… I just bought the plus-size Eva dress, which is just weird enough that it might fit perfectly into my new bolder wardrobe. I find their patterns fascinating though – they are copies of hand drawn patterns, where you can actually see the marks of the pen. What do you think?