Thursday, November 8, 2012

Nuts for Downloadables

There was a sale on Lekala patterns on I've always wanted to try them. I also paid for my first Burda downloadable pattern off of I have a tonne of patterns in my stash already, but you know how it is. My only regret is the printing and taping.

Lekala takes about half of the headache out of downloadable patterns. Unlike Burda, they give you your exact size from a set of 6 measurements (height, bust, underbust, waist, hip/belly, and hip). Also unlike Burda, they give you a seam allowance (either 1/2" or 1/4" depending on the style). Taping was made easier, because I could just match up and tape where the pattern pieces intersected, not necessarily the entire sheet of paper. Unfortunately, the instructions for these are shite. If you are an inexperienced sewer or have trouble thinking in three dimensions, you probably don't want to attempt these. As it is, I'll be faking it the whole way through. We'll see how it goes.

Here's what I got:

1. Lek4097: The bunnyhug (a.k.a. "hoodie". I'm trying to see if I can get this term to catch on outside of Saskatchewan). 
I pretty much live in these. I'm not a fancy dresser and most days I want to be comfortable and WARM. I'll probably use this pattern numerous times (whenever I can score fleece on sale). I love the shape of the hood. Construction seems pretty straightforward.

2. Lek4105: Asymetrical knit top. 
I like that it's different. I may change the sleeves, or make one with straight sleeves (without cuffs) and one as drafted. I can see this in a bamboo knit? Any other suggestions? I'm not sure about how the neck is finished, but if it uses a facing I may try to finish it with a bias strip.

3. Lek5870: Casual swing jacket. 
I have a jacket almost exactly like this in my closet already but it's shorter and red. I probably bought this one because I was wearing the red on a the time. I think it will come in very handy if I made it up in a neutral like khaki or grey, or even denim as shown.

4. Lek5913: Tunic. 
If I only saw the line drawing I wouldn't give this a second look. This is pretty shapeless, which I usually try to avoid, but I've been looking for an excuse to wear leggings and I have a couple of patterns for skinny jeans/leggings that I could pair with this as well. Any thoughts on what fabric I should use for this? Would Ponte knit be too heavy? A lighter weight sweater knit?

5. Lek4042: Cross-neck top. 
If I can get this to work out, I'll probably make a bunch of these. I think it will probably be a very easy make, and I can most likely serge together the entire thing.

6. Burda Gathered Shirt Blouse 10/2012 #117:
I've been inspired by Kristy . I have two very different plaids in my stash already that would work with this. One of them was purchased at Mood almost four ago. Originally it was to be a shirt, but on reading the reviews for that pattern I chickened out and it has been left as "too good to cut" for a long time. On our last trip to NYC, I found it again in Mood and realized that it is silk. I like that it is made from a woven fabric and it has an interesting design. This pattern comes as the full dress with cutoff lines for the top.

Right now? I'm finishing up a peplum top. I used a vintage 60s/70s pattern (I'll check the year when I post the finished product) that I graded down two sizes, gave an sba, changed the darts into shoulder princess seams, cut off at the waist and drafted a peplum. I really like the Vogue peplum top everyone is making now, but I prefer a v-neck and like to make things hard for myself. sigh.

I'm not sure how this trend will fit into my life so I didn't want to invest a lot of cash. I used a cotton chintz I got at a second hand store a year ago for probably $2 and everything else I had in my stash. The only investment was a crap-load of time. So far it looks like it's going to turn out. Fingers crossed.

If any of you have sewn Lekala patterns, please comment and let me know how it went. If you have any suggestions for fabrics for any of these, please let me know. I've been reading Tasia's posts about knits, but I'll take all the info I can get.


  1. Nice choices. I look forward to seeing your Lekala work.

  2. Oh- I did not need to see these- I love them all!

  3. I could wander the Lekala site aimlessly and drool over pretty much every thing on it for hours. (I may or may not have actually done this.) Anyway, they actually go together pretty well, or at least the couple that I have made did--be aware it was a couple of nighties, so you know, nothing too strenuous. The main problem I remember having was some "floating" lines because I may not have printed them on the correct size of paper--not a big deal for my project, but you might need a bit more precision for what you are making.

  4. Lekala have such great patterns... but I've yet to try them. So I'll be watching with a keen eye to see how they work out for you!

    1. Poppykettle (et. al), I think you would like them. I've burned through the two knit tops and the only thing I've had to alter is the shoulder width (made it 1/2" wider-and easy adjustment). Everything else was right-on size-wise. The directions are shite, but I'm sure you could muddle through. I found better instructions on the Lekala site here: