My Parklet Jacket

If you live in the Northern Hemisphere, you may be wondering why I'm posting a heavy jacket in the middle of May. But it was 55 degrees and windy last night in San Francisco as I did some outdoor dining and I can assure you that this jacket will get a LOT of wear. In fact, I've been wearing this every weekend since I finished it earlier this month to outdoor meetups with friends. 

While I am hopeful that COVID is winding down for now in the Bay Area (and I am now fully vaccinated!), we have been doing most of our socializing outdoors. It's been wonderful to connect with friends, some of whom I haven't seen in many months. And amid all of this I realized that the cute tops and dresses I've made over the past twelve months were not going to cut it for a chilly night in a bar parklet on Telegraph. So my parklet jacket was born. 



Pattern: McCalls Misses' Unlined Jacket #6531
Fabric: 4yds Robert Kauffman Big Sur Canvas in Canyon Brown
2 yds Minky Luxe Cuddle in Heather Henna
Cost: $125

I went all out with this jacket. Stonemountain was having a sale on their Robert Kauffman Big Sur Canvas so I ordered a few yards of that along with matching thread, snaps, zipper, cording, and cord stops. The matching thread felt like a real treat as I almost always just sew with black/white/gray. I'm glad I did it though as I did lots of topstitching and the matching color gave a really professional finish. And the option to have them match it for you when you order online takes all the guesswork out of it. I only wish I'd realized that they send 200m spools - I needed to go out and pick up some more. 

For extra warmth and luxury, I decided to line the whole thing in sumptuously soft minky fabric. I've always wanted to use something like this for an extra cozy jacket and I'm glad I did. It feels like wearing a teddy bear. 



For the pattern, I dug in my stash and came up with McCall's #6531, a loose-fitting, unlined jacket that has a sporty/parka look with rolled sleeves and the option to cinch the neckline, waist, and hem. It wasn't until I was ready to cut it out though that I realized I had a larger size range than I needed. I think I must have gotten this pattern at a swap and either didn't notice or didn't care. Luckily, the pattern pieces were pretty basic and I was able to grade down one size. Because it's a loose-fitting style, I wasn't particularly worried about getting the fit just right.

One reason I chose this pattern is that it has cut-on, loose-fitting sleeves. They are kind of a batwing or dolman style. Because I was using a bulky lining, I knew this style would be better for accommodating all that fabric than a traditional, close-fitting set-in sleeve. The pattern does not include pieces or instructions for adding a lining, but I found it was easy enough to do by cutting out the regular pattern pieces except for the collar and cuffs, and shortening the hems. 



Before I make up a new pattern these days, I like to read Pattern Review to see what others recommend. Many said they ended up sizing down, but I was glad that I cut the size (or close to it) for my measurements. This gave me enough room to add the bulky lining fabric and not worry about whether I'd still be able to get it on. Funny enough, many people also said the sleeves were too short and they had to lengthen by two inches or more (!). I'm not sure if it was because I was grading down from a larger size range or if I just have short arms, but the sleeves were plenty long enough for me!



One fun thing about this jacket is that it is designed so that you can roll the sleeves up. I knew that mine wouldn't roll quite so nicely in thicker canvas, but I still like the option for the hours before the sun goes down. I cut a facing from the canvas so that the minky lining wouldn't show through (and it meant less bulk). My one gripe is that the cuff closure for this jacket is just made by overlapping the cuff pieces. I think this could have been done more elegantly, but oh well. I also wish they included more snaps in the notions list for the cuffs (they recommend buttons instead) and for the pockets. I luckily had a few extra snaps in my stash for the cuffs so was able to add them here. 


Now I have the perfect casual jacket for the lake or a parklet bar. The only problem is the Mr. has one in a lighter shade of canvas and is a little annoyed that I had to have one for myself ;)

3 comments:

  1. I love this! what a perfect jacket for outdoor dining. the idea of the fur lining is so good. great way to use that pattern.

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  2. That is one gorgeous jacket! That color looks amazing on you.

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  3. The color is perfect, the jacket is beautiful, your guy can go kick a cow. ;) It looks really terrific, I like the rolled sleeves a lot!

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