Oversized Wool Half Zip

As part of my winter sewing plan, I am trying to reduce the size of my stash.  To do this, I am not only rehoming fabric that I no longer think I will use but I am also trying really hard to make most of my winter wardrobe from my stash.  My remnant aquisition habit has well and truly been tamed at this point and the only fabric added to my stash this year has for the most part been already made up apart from 3 pieces which I have plans for.  Part of my mantra for some time has been that unless I have immediate plans for it, it stays in the shop.  There will always be more fabric so I don't have to buy it all!  This all leads to my long term plan of making less and wearing more.  This is going to be a hard one for me because I really like to make!  I do find though that I have to be ruthless with the amount I part with just to fit it in and this doesn't sit well. I do donate to charity shops and have my favourites that I donate to but I have heard horror stories about where most  textile waste ends up and the thought of my lovely handmades rotting in a landfill is almost impossible to contemplate.  I aim for 30 plus wears with anything I make because although some things will well and truly exceed that, my wardrobe app tells me most things don't and that needs to change.  Today is a case in point.  I am wearing a pair of jeans that have been worn well more than 30 times with a merino tee that also falls into this category with a handknitted pullover that would be lucky to have been worn more than a handful.  So why has my pullover only been worn a few times but been made a couple of years?  I just haven't put in the time to work out how to style it.  I really like todays look so maybe this one will finally be on repeat. This all leads me to my latest top.

When the cold started to creep in in autumn, I had a hankering for a half zip sweat.  I have been seeing these everywhere lately and my 17year old son has bought a couple of particularly retro versions recently that bear more than a passing resemblence to the ones I wore myself as a teen in the late 80s and early 90s.  I was feeling quite nostalgic to the point, I really wanted one!  I knew that if I got this right, I would live in it all winter and hopefully winters to come.

Because my stash didn't yield any fabric that would do the job, I went down to The Fabric Store during their VIP sale recently and bought 1.5m of Japanese Knit Coating, Owl.  It is quite a loose weave knit that is more suited to a pullover than a coat.  I would actually liken it to fleece because of the weave and the textured finish.  It is deliciously soft and spongy and best of all it is 67% wool so perfect for a Christchurch winter.

Next, an evening flicking through my generous stash of Burdastyle magazines (buying these is another of my habits I have recently  kicked) yielded Burdastyle 12/2017 116.  I haven't made anything from this issue as yet so it was about time I did.  A quick Google search revealed very little.  In fact only one person had made this as far as Google could tell!  I wasn't put off though so traced it out.

I actually traced the second to smallest size in this sweat because it is massively oversized.  I traced the size that would work with my hip measurement and just knew the rest would be fine and indeed it was.  The actual biggest challenge with this entire project was finding a zip.  I visited every shop in town looking for a metal tooth zipper in the correct grey and ended up shortening a rescued one from my own stash.

Most of the construction for my top was done on the overlocker.  I added a band to the bottom of my version instead of the elasticated hem that the pattern called for and did the same for the sleeves.  The fabric I chose although squishy wasn't overly bulky and had enough stretch so this worked well.

Once I completed my top, I showed it to the 17 year old who is shaping up to be a very well dressed young man and invited his opinion.  The verdict is, it is all right but the collar is a bit big.  It is a good thing then that I am not 17 years old because I love it!  Yes, it is oversized which I usually avoid at all costs but who doesn't love cozying up in an oversized wool pullover on a cold winters day!


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