Man, I love me some hoodies. I wear them year-round – even in the summer (because some people like to crank their a/c up to “frigid,” eep). I love how a well-fitted, soft hoodie can be the most comfortable piece of clothing in my closet. Here’s my sacred secret, though: my go-to hoodie was a ratty pile of SHAME. I really did wear it for everything – from cleaning the bathroom to keeping warm on a drafty airplane – and it showed. It showed in the form of faded, pilled black, bleach spots, paint stains, ratty edges, and a giant hole at the neckline (that was from a fight. Also, that’s all I’m going to say about that). I loved the way it fit, which is why I kept it long after it’s sad sorry state should have sent it to Hoodie Heaven (that’s my other sacred secret: I don’t repair my ratty clothing. That hole stayed in the neckline for OVER 6 YEARS. Yeah!!).
I’m afraid I don’t have a pattern to share, as I literally ripped up my ratty-ass hoodie and traced each piece onto paper, adding 3/8″ seam allowance. I didn’t make any changes to the pattern as I liked the way the hoodie fit pre-rip. And boy, did that hoodie want to be ripped up – the pieces were falling apart in my hands. Damn!
You’ll notice my stripes don’t *exactly* match up – on one side, and also at the top of the zipper. That’s ok, I’m not totally heartbroken over it. This is what happens when you push yourself to finish a project long after the mojo has dried up – you get sloppy. Usually, I put everything away and try to revisit the next day with a fresh outlook. I was cold, though, and since my hoodie was laying in pieces on the cutting table… I soldiered on. At the expense of a little stripe-matching, but hey, shit happens.
Figuring out the order of construction required a little forethought, since the length of certain areas (the neckline where the hood fits, the front where the zipper goes) need to be pretty precise. In case you are thinking about traveling down the same path of hoodie rebirth, here’s the direction I took:
1. Sew band to pockets, attach pockets to front
2. Sew front to back at shoulders
3. Insert sleeves
4. Sew up side seams
5. Sew hood seam, attach band to front
6. Sew hood to neckline
7. Attach bottom band
8. Insert zipper
9. Attach sleeve cuffs
Not too hard! It’s just like sewing a tshirt (in fact, I bet one could use the Renfrew pattern as a jumping off point, although you’d have to raise the neckline), just with an added zipper and hood :) If you are adding a hood, make sure the measurement of the bottom of the hood (where it attaches to the neckline) is the same as the measurement of the entire circumference of the neckline, minus the zipper. Otherwise, it won’t sit right!
The pockets have the usual knit band at the top (cut slightly shorter than the measurement, then stretched to fit), topstitched with a twin needle. I sewed the zipper in using the twin needle because I liked the way it looks – we’ll see how well that holds up, since it’s not usually the strongest seam :) Surprisingly, the zipper went in quite easily and I didn’t have to stabilize the seam like I thought I would. My knit was pretty stable, it might not work as well with really stretchy fabrics. If you are having trouble getting your zipper lump-free, sewing on a piece of ribbon or even fusing a stripe of interfacing really helps, fyi!
Ok, now I’m going to show you some shots of my sorry old hoodie. Don’t you dare judge me.
NOTE: Today is the last day for the Drape Drape Giveaway! I will be closing the entries at midnight, so get yer comment in!