Hoodie Vest

 

I bought some green jersey a while ago with the idea of making something “Robin Hoodie.” I wanted something that was snuggly for keeping my hands and neck warm when it wasn’t chilly enough for a jacket, but colder than just t-shirt weather. In other words, I was looking for an excuse to make up a pattern.

Cutting the Pieces

The whole thing is made twice and then sewn together, so all the seams are inside like a pillow case. When you have cut all the pieces you should have:

  • 4 hood halves
  • 2 left shoulders
  • 2 right shoulders
  • 2 backs
  • 2 left sides
  • 2 right sides

I have photographed all my pattern pieces on an inch grid so you can get my scale. I started with one of my own t-shirts for sizing, so you could use your own t-shirt to make one of your size.

Back and Front

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The Back is folded on the center. Make sure to cut on the fold so that you get an entire back. Cut out two backs.

For the Fronts cut out two, then flip it over and cut out two more so you have two left Fronts and two right Fronts.

Hood

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Like the Fronts, you will end up with four of these pieces: two left and two mirror image rights. If you used your own t-shirt to adjust the size, you will need to adjust the length of the hood bottom to match your neckline length. You want it to be approximately 1/2 inch longer than your neckline.

Side Panel

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The side panel is asymmetric, with a front and back. Like the Front and Hood, cut two pieces then flip it over and cut two more for the other side.

The length depends upon your arms and where you wants your pockets. You will end up folding the end up to make a pocket that hits your arm, so the height and depth depend upon your size and preferences. If you have enough fabric, just cut extra length and shorten as you need. If you are tight on fabric, assemble the rest of the hoodie first, and then take personal measurements (which is what I did).

Assembly

All seams are a standard 5/8th inch allowance. I was using jersey, but I used a simple straight stitch for all stitches and started and finished all seams with 1/4 inch back stitch.

Step 1: Attach Shoulders

Take one of your Backs and one pair of right and left Fronts. Sew each shoulder to the back on the shoulder seam. Do this twice, to both sets of Backs and Fronts. This is the “Body” of the hoodie.

Step 2: Sew the Body Together

Take both of your bodies and lay them wrong side out, so that the raw seams are on the outside and the finished seams are on the inside and pin them together.

Sew it all closed, but do NOT sew over the neck opening, leave that open. Start at one end of the neck opening and sew around the entire body until you get to the other side of the neck opening.

Now you should be able to turn the body inside-out though the neck opening, so that the raw edges are inside and the finished seams on the outside.

Step 3: Stitch the Neckline.

Now you can stitch the neckline together.

Step 4: Sew Your Hoods

The hoodies are the same. Take a pair of last and right hood halved and sew them up the center seam to create a single hood. Repeat this for the other pair.

Step 5: Sew Your Hoods Together

Take your two hoods and put one “inside” of the other, with the wrong side out and finished seams inside. You are trying to get the front edges of the hood to line up. You can use the center seam to help match the pieces. When you are done, pin the front edges of the two hood together.

The easiest way to do this is to start by matching the center seams and pinning there. Then work from the center towards the edges.

Now sew the front edges together. Once again, do NOT sew the neck openings together.

Now turn your hood right side out, so that the finished edges are on the outside.

Step 6: Attach the Hood

I am not good at handling lots of layers of fabric at once, so you might also want to do some basting here.

Take your hood and roll the raw edge of the neck line about 1/2 into the hood. As you are doing this, use pins to keep the roll in place and even. Now set your sewing machine to a basting stitch or the longest stitch you can. Sew around the hood to keep the roll in place. Sew your basting stitch close to the 1/2 inch in, to make room for your final stitch.

Now with your raw edges safely inside of your hood, you can start pinning your hood to the neckline of your body. Since the hood is dual-layers, you should be able to put the visible seam of the body into the hood. Since the hood’s neckline is slightly longer than the body’s, there should be a little overlap at each end.

Once again, the easiest thing is to start at the center seam, pin the hood in place and work your way towards the ends.

Once pinned, sew the hood to the body. Your seam should be “below” the basting stitch. make sure not to sew over your basting stitch, as it will make it hard to remove.

Once the hood is attached, this stitch should be the only visible stitch and it should be wrap the remaining raw edges from the body.

Use a seam ripper to remove the basting stitch.

Step 7: Make the Sides

Think of these as pillow cases. Take two pieces and sew them together leaving some of the bottom open. Then turn them right-side out to hide the raw edges and top stitch over the opening to close it.

Do this twice to make both sides.

Step 8: Attach the Sides at Front

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The front is the easiest part. Pin the “strap” to the bottom of the shoulder and top stitch into place. Here you can adjust the arm scythe by attaching it a bit higher or lower.

I attached mine about 1 inch in and did a little shape for decoration.

Do this for both of your sides at the front.

Step 9: Attach the Sides at Back.

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This is a little creative draping, as the pattern wasn’t “snapped” for the back. As you can see from the stitch, the back strap starts even to where I hung the front strap and is also the full strap width into the back.

I pinned the top of the back strap into the back where I seemed to hang the best on my body with my arms. Then I curved the remaining length of the back towards the edge of the side panel, so the bottom of the seam would end at the edge of the side panel. If I had sewn it straight down, you end up with about 1.5 inches of side-panel as a flap in the back.

So once pinned, sew down the top of the strap, then sew along the curve until you get to the end.

Do this for both sides.

Step 10: Pockets.

Now that you have the full body, hood, and sides, figure how where your pockets should hang. Fold up the ends of the side panels and top stitch the sides together.

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