Hello everyone! Finally, I have joined hundreds (maybe even thousands) of other seamstresses all over the world, and sewn my first Indie Pattern. I chose the Kelly Anorak Jacket – Closet Case Patterns as my first Indie because I’ve wanted to add more outerwear to my wardrobe. Also, I was very curious about this one because so many women are sewing her.
What is an Indie Pattern
You may be familiar with the Big Four Pattern Companies – Simplicity, Vogue, Butterick & McCall’s. There are also Independent Pattern Companies. These consist of independent pattern designers who create their own patterns (Indie Patterns) and make them available to the public for purchase through either printed material, pdf downloads, or both.
Fiona, with Diary of a Chainstitcher, has constructed a list of Indie Pattern Designers that she was able to find through her own search. Wow! I had NO idea there were so many (and this is not even ALL of them). She did a great job organizing the designers by category, making it easy for us to find what we’re looking for. I was very happy to see a good number of designers for menswear. There’s even a category for “Sewing Books” by Independent Designers. It is definitely a “growing industry.”
I’ve heard that sewing with Indie Patterns is preferred by some seamstresses. Since this is only my first, I don’t have enough experience with Indies to choose one over the other. I plan to sew with more Indie patterns this year, so that I’ll be able to make a determination as to my preference later on. I’m really excited about incorporating these patterns into my library, and I think the Kelly Anorak Jacket – Closet Case Patterns is a great start.
What is an Anorak Jacket?
Believe it or not, I didn’t know this jacket style was called “Anorak.” I’ve seen this style, and even worn it ( I have a hooded one in my closet that I purchased many years ago.). I wanted to know the meaning of this term, so I went to online dictionaries, and below are a few definitions I found.
- The Free Dictionary – A jacket with a hood, especially one that provides protection from harsh weather.
- Oxford Dictionary – A waterproof jacket, typically with a hood, of a kind originally used in polar regions.
- Wikipedia – A parka or anorak is a type of coat with a hood, often lined with fur or faux fur. The hood protects the face from freezing temperatures and wind. The Caribou Inuit invented this kind of garment, originally made from caribou or seal skin, for hunting and kayaking in the frigid Arctic.
Kelly Anorak Jacket – Closet Case Patterns
As I mentioned above, I’ve seen many seamstresses sewing this jacket, so I wanted to give her a try. Being that it was my first Indie sew, I wanted to really take my time with it and get as much information as possible before starting. My first step was reading the instruction booklet that came with the pattern to get an idea of the ease or difficulty, and style of the written instructions. Next, I went to patternreview.com to read reviews on this pattern from other seamstresses. This is something I do often, as some reviewers alert us to issues encountered when sewing the patterns, and give suggestions or solutions to overcoming them. Finally, I went to the Closet Case Files Blog to check out blog posts for a Sew-Along they did for this jacket. Armed with information from all three sources, I felt ready and confident that this would be an easy sew, not different from what I’ve done with other patterns.
I’m very pleased with the outcome of this jacket. I will probably make it again, but in a larger size so that it may be worn over bulky sweaters. I’d also like to make it as a vest. It really is a nice construction, if I must say so myself, and should last a long time.
Traditionally, the anorak jacket is constructed of a lightweight fabric, but I chose to make mine with a medium/heavy weight, camouflage denim. I also opted out of the hooded version and went with a stand-up collar. The traditional anorak is lined, but I left mine unlined. The pattern does not include instructions for a lining, but you can use the pattern pieces for the front, back, and sleeve to construct one. There is a tutorial on the Closet Case Files Blog on how to add an interlining to this jacket for warmth. So, while I didn’t sew a traditional anorak, I had an idea of what I wanted mine to look like, complete with styling options. It turned out exactly as I envisioned it. Of course it looks great with a pair of jeans, but I also see it being worn over a cute pencil skirt and fitted t-shirt. How about throwing it on over a maxi skirt/dress, a pair of booties, and newsboy cap? I think I see more of these jackets in my future.
FYI: I purchased my camouflage denim from Manny Fabrics, a local fabric store in the Garment District of Downtown, Los Angeles. They don’t have a website but if you’re ever in the area, they’re located near the corner of Wall Street & 9th Street (around the corner from Michael Levine Fabrics). I have linked to other fabric options below.
Create the Look!
What About You?
Have you ever sewn with an Indie Pattern? Who is your favorite Indie Designer?
Thanks for stopping by!
Remember: When you live in your DESIGN, it is from there that God SHINES!
All Photos Courtesy of CEMO!