We’ve just got some really cute organic jersey in from Lillestoff and I wanted to sew some of it to see how it handled. The latest Love Sewing Magazine included a free pattern for a kids hoodie called the Eclipse Hoodie which is always useful to have on hand as an extra layer (download here).
The magazine includes full step-by-step instructions with colour photographs but you have to download the pattern from their website. If you haven’t used PDF patterns before it is worth giving them a go – I use them a lot and find they can be a quick, convenient and cheap alternative to paper patterns. For this one, you don’t actually need to print page 1 of the download as it just shows you how to assemble the pages. I’m always careful not to select ‘do not scale’ when printing so I did do a bit of head-scratching on this one when they printed out and it seemed like part of the pattern at the edges of the paper was missing.
The extra text is visible on the PDF so seems like it was outside of the printer margins or something? However, when I lined up the pages next to each other I could see that pattern was OK. It just meant I had to eyeball the cutting line where the pages joined together. It would also be useful if they had a box on the pattern showing the correct scale just for you to check you’ve got it printed correctly (most designers put a 1″x1″ box somewhere).
I cut a size/age 2. There are three pattern pieces and the same piece for the front and back body. I cut the back first since it has the higher neckline, before trimming the neckline on the pattern piece and then cutting the front body.
The method for creating the hood is convenient but I don’t think it is the most economical with fabric. I chose to do the hood in a contrast fabric and I needed a 75cm length of the green fabric due to the size of the pattern piece and the fact it is cut on a double fold. This meant that I should have ended up with quite a lot of leftover fabric in this colour. It turned out I needed this extra fabric though as I didn’t pay close attention to the picture AND written instructions detailing the way the fabric should be twice-folded to cut out the hood, resulting in a failed first attempt and me needing to cut a second version!
If you choose a fabric with a directional print for the hood be aware that the pattern will be upside-down on one side of the head….another good reason to choose a plain contrasting/coordinating fabric!
The hood is very spacious and the way it folds over at the front is a really nice feature. All internal seams were done on the overlocker. The pattern didn’t state a seam allowance so I went with 3/8″ which is pretty standard for a jersey pattern.
Everything came together fine and matched up well. The sleeves and hem are finished with folding the fabric to the wrong-side and topstitching. I like to use 1/4” fusible tape to help hold everything in place, and then used a twin needle.
All in all the Eclipse Hoodie is a great little free pattern. If I make it again I might try to do something different with the hood so I don’t need to use quite such a long length of fabric.