One of the styles (my) contemporary teenagers like is a fairly shrunken, close-fitting version of the sweatshirt. I had cloned an existing one (which belongs to Tyo) for Syo, last winter sometime, which was successful but, like the original, very dependent on fabric stretch to fit. I wanted a version with a little more ease, that would work in less stretchy, classic sweatshirt fabrics. There are almost certainly patterns out there for this look—but I don’t own any of them, and I do own enough patterns that I should not be buying more for something as simple as a raglan sleeve sweatshirt.
Anyway, last night my husband sent me downstairs to sew while he played video games, and I cut out another Jalie Julia, but the fabric was dark and there’s white thread in the serger right now and I didn’t feel like changing it, so I looked around for a different project.
(The regular machine, on the other hand, had black thread in the needle and white thread in the bobbin, because Syo was apparently down there trying to alter a bra but she’s too lazy to change the bobbin thread. Or so I surmise, since the bra was still sitting on the floor. Because that’s life with teenagers. )
Anyway, so looking around for something else, I spied this fabric, which I bought my girls for Christmas presents last year. (This is what happens, teenagers, when you make the mistake of showing interest in your mom’s hobbies.)
I thought it was adorable and hilarious. It looks like sweatshirt fabric on the outside, but the inside is almost like a minky. And then when I was getting it cut we discovered it was flawed—some bad lines of staining on the soft white interior. It became steeply discounted and I became the owner of a ridiculous amount of it.
The kids thought it made great blankets (as most fleece fabrics do), and Tyo mused at length about making a giant pj sweater out of it, and a tiny cropped sweater for Syo, but nothing happened beyond that so eventually I packed it away into the stash.
But it would be perfect for white serger thread.
After a bit of digging I decided Kwik Sew 2893 seemed like a good place to start. While it’s styled like a baseball tee, it’s roomier than Jalie 3245, and the difference between a baseball tee and a sweatshirt pattern is largely about ease.
It’s a kids pattern but the XL is a size 12-14, which is about the same chest measurement as Tyo, and I figured if it didn’t fit Syo it would fit Tyo, and if Tyo didn’t like it it would work for Fyon, who is a very skinny eleven now. This is the convenient part of having multiple girls in the family, even if they don’t stairstep quite as neatly as they used to.
I wanted a slightly cropped length, partly just to use less fabric in this tester version, so I made it the length of the Extra Small size. This is still significantly longer than the sweater at the top of the post, and as it turned out, while it makes a short sweater, it’s not what I would call cropped.
At the last moment I decided to include the pocket, also in a size XS, because it’s nice for teenagers to have somewhere to stuff their phones. This was pretty simple, although more stabilization might’ve been nice. I did knit interfacing strips along the opening parts.
None of the grey ribbings I have in stash were a perfect match, but this one was the best. I could also try black at some point, that might be fun.
Anyway. While I was sewing it up I was convinced I was making a sweater for Fyon, but Syo tried it on and it fits her. It also fits Tyo but the length is awkward—longer than cropped but not as long as she’d like a normal length sweater. On the other hand she didn’t take it off and went on to sleep in it, so I guess it’s not that bad.
And it’s one tiny piece less taking up space in my stash.
4 responses to “Little sweaters”
Wait, who is Fyon? A cousin, or have a missed a daughter all this time? That fabric is super cute, and I love how it turned out!
(Also, we’re forever looking for young sewists to feature on the Sewcailists, so I wonder if your girls would do a little Q&A post with you? Like, what do their friends think about them wearing handmade clothes, when did they learn to sew, do they find sewing patterns they want to make/have you make, or are they always hacking things to be for teen-friendly? I know they don’t sew much, but I feel like haphazard alterations and poorly planned projects is exactly how I sewed as a teen!)
Fyon is my (formerly) “four year old niece”—she’s eleven now so a good candidate if anything turns out too small for my girls. 😂 Also, that sounds really fun, I’ll run it by them. 🙂
This is really cute, but not too cute. And it’s very lovely on your daughter. My 18 year old is just outwearing his size 12-14 pajama bottoms. He just gets longer. I certainly did not. Fyon is a handy person to have.
I wanted to know who Fyon is too! And what cuties your girls are. My child would not wear my things – or model them 😦