Pattern name: Cocoon Jacket by Sew Different, which is available in PDF or paper. I used the PDF version.
Description from the pattern: The Cocoon Jacket hangs off the shoulders in a relaxed, oversize fit. It bubbles out, coming in again just under the bum, enveloping you in cozy cocoon of warmth – hence the name. It has 3/4 length sleeves with oversize cuffs which can be made in a contrasting texture or colour, notches at the neckline and deep easy pockets. The front panels only are lined.
Size range: US 4-22/UK 8-26
Smallest fits: 33”/26.75”/36” (84/68/92cm), largest fits: 50.75”/44”/52.75” (128/112/134cm)
Size Range Rating: 3 – pretty standard for most indie and Big Four patterns
What size did you make? I made a combined US18/UK22 and US22/UK26
What are your measurements, height, and body type?
I am a 5’10” short waisted pear with narrow shoulders and legs that go for days! (or at least it feels that way ?) Bust/Waist/Hip: 43.5”/36.5”/52”
What adjustments did you make?
Due to my narrow shoulders, I always cut the shoulders, neckline and sleeves to match my bust measurement then gently grade out from the underbust to the larger size needed for my hips. In this case, I used the US 18 for the upper body and the US 22 for the hips.
Due to the simplicity of the pattern pieces, it took no time at all to redraw the side seamline using my hip curve before cutting out.
I didn’t sew it; I used a USLB machine and Sewfree tape to create the garment – added about 30 minutes to my total time.
I did not line the front as I felt that would be too bulky. Clean finished the front edge with trim. Did not hem sleeves. Left them as long as possible (for now).
What fabric did you use?
I used a 100% Poly fleece backed sweater knit picked up at JoAnn Fabrics. The pattern suggests medium to heavy weight wool, heavy knits or felts (also suitings, which I thought was odd).
What was the construction process like? And did the instructions make sense to you?
Instructions Rating: 3
I am not sure if it is a British vs American thing, but I found some of the phrasing clunky. The pattern designer makes up for it in solid illustrations.
Construction Process Rating: 5 for being super easy.
The garment construction is basic. No tailoring or involved piecing. 99% of the garment involves straight edges to straight edges.
How do you like the pattern’s fit?
The pattern’s fit seemed more oversized on the model on the pattern cover than it does on me. There isn’t as much room in the armscye as I thought.
Do you think the design works well for your particular body shape?
I am not sure if this jacket is for me. Maybe not the best fit for my shape as it scoops in under my bum (which, of course, is clearly stated in the pattern description ?), but that said, it is growing on me. I am thinking it might be cuter on shorter, curvy girls.
Will you make the pattern again?
I definitely want to make this again – want to try different fabrics such as an embroidered boiled wool I have my eye on and see what happens. I think this pattern has a lot of potential.
What fit or design changes will you make?
I think there are a few things that I would tweak if I were to make this again i.e.: lengthen 1-2 inches from the underarm to lower bodice seam, move pocket slightly towards the side away from center, and either make it a full sleeve OR cut it just at the elbow (being tall with long arms, I always find sleeve length to be awkward).
Do you have any advice on this pattern for other curvy sewers?
I would advise other curvy sewers to check the armscye finished measurement to make sure it is to your liking.
Are there any resources (blog posts, fitting books, tutorials) that helped you sew this piece up?
This is where I cheated. I am very lucky to have access to a USLB (Ultra Sonic Line Bonding machine) and heat press for bonding the seams with Knit Seam Tape (think like your rain gear that has that waterproof tape over it – but softer and stretchier for sportswear) through my job. I love that this pattern was a perfect for this type of construction! I know that this isn’t something that can be copied by the home sewist, but I think that it could be replicated by trimming your seam allowances to a scant 1/8” and then covering by centering with 7/8” wide grosgrain along the seam.
Final Fit Rating: 4 because it is an oversized garment without much shaping
Overall Rating: I am giving this a 3.75 because it is better than good but not great. I think the shape of the cardigan is far more interesting than most of what I have seen out on the market. I wouldn’t have normally purchased this pattern, but I am happy to have tested because it has given me a new blank slate to play with and make my own.
Note: I received this pattern for free from Sew Different, but all opinions about the pattern are my own.