This jacket is so cozy and comfortable, I almost don’t want to turn on the heat inside in order to just keep wearing it all the time – almost…. I used the City Cardi pattern from the Autumn/Winter 5/2012 Ottobre Magazine, and a wonderful thick wool knit that actually looks like hand knit on the outside and is backed with a smooth jersey on the inside. I got it online at mood fabrics, and just wish I would have gotten more when they still had it in stock. Would have made for a lovely blanket, couch cushion, or vest for my husband, etc., etc….. Did I already say that I love this fabric?
Some tips for working with Ottobre patterns: you will have to copy your pattern from a sheet with multiple patterns, so it really helps to have a good lighting situation. To my taste the Ottobre pattern sheets could be a little less crammed, but then again I appreciate getting many patterns for just the price of one magazine – thus worth it, especially when relieved with a little swearing now and then.
Fabric choice: even though the fabric description of mine said that it basically had no stretch, I actually found it to have just the right give for this jacket. Especially with the raglan sleeves I think it is important to have some stretch in order for the shoulder part to really lie flat. A boiled wool knit could also work really well for this jacket.
Sizing: having studied several pattern reviews of this jacket, I found that some experienced the sleeves being a bit tight. Since I made the Minoru jacket with raglan sleeves where I also found this type of sleeves a little tight, I decided to actually go for making a muslin! Luckily this jacket does not have many pattern pieces, and I reduced the number even further by leaving out the collar completely, so I had the muslin ready in no time. Am I glad I made one – it helped me find out exactly how much wider I would want the sleeves and where to add the width. Overall I went for a size 36 (my measurement of 86cm bust is right between size 36 and 38 with Ottobre), but adjusted the upper part of the sleeves up to 42, and the sleeve in general to 38, especially since the fabric I used is rather thick. Sounds like tons, but the differences between the sizes are not that much, and I really played with all those sizes here, adding most under the arms and half way up the shoulder seams and then not so much near the neck area to avoid an overly wide neckline.
Sewing: Sewing this jacket together is super easy, even more so since I did not make any hems, trying to avoid the extra bulk created by thick wool fabric, but also wanting a bit of a “rougher” look by just serging the edges with a contrasting color. I topstitched all the seams to create flat seams. For the sleeves I stitched the seam allowance down by hand, since I have not found a good way yet to do topstitching in sleeves with the machine. If anyone knows, please let me know!
Details: I chose to not use a zipper and instead added sew on snap buttons which I covered with bits of the cosmos fabric my husband and I had designed in the summer. It was the perfect color match for the coat. I secured the pockets with small Xs in a very narrow zig zag stitch to have another color highlight with the benefit of securing the pocket.
Since I already claimed this to be the coziest autumn jacket ever, you probably won’t be surprised that I am quite sure to use this pattern again, maybe in a bolder color of boiled wool knit or with a french terry cotton, possibly lining it in order to make it into a reversible jacket… who knows!
In case you read this because you are planning to make this jacket for yourself: enjoy!