- All seam allowances are 1cm unless otherwise stated.
- Pre-shrink machine washable fabrics: wash, dry and iron fabrics before sewing.
- Cutting pattern pieces
Note: it is important to cut the pieces on your main fabric, lining fabric, and quilting fabric the right way, as the front bodice includes two pieces (left and right) of different shapes.
- Main fabric: lay the main fabric with the right side facing up, place the pattern on top of the fabric with the printed side facing up, and cut the fabric.
- Lining and quilting fabric: lay the fabric with the wrong side facing up, place the pattern on top of the fabric with the printed side facing up, and cut the fabric (see the pictures in step 2).
2. Attaching quilting fabric to lining fabric
For the back bodice, place the lining fabric on top of the quilting fabric with the right side facing up, pin and baste along the raw edges with 0.5cm seam allowance. Repeat with the front right bodice and front left bodice pieces.
(As shown in the pictures below, I baste the quilt and lining first before trimming the quilt.)
Sew horizontal lines across the pieces with 10cm space in between, as shown in the picture. (It looks nicer if the lines are sewn at the same positions across the pieces, although this will not be seen from outside.)
3. Making collar
Attach the quilt to one collar piece using the same method in step 2. Place the two collar pieces with the right sides touching. Sew along the curved raw edge with 1cm allowance. Trim off 2/3 of the seam allowance. Turn the right side out and baste the bottom raw edge.
4. Sewing bodice (main fabric)
Place the front bodice left and right pieces on top of the back bodice piece with the right sides touching. Pin and sew along the shoulder seam. Open the seams and iron flat.
5. Attaching collar
Pin the raw edge of the collar to the bodice along the neckline, with the centre of the collar aligned to the back centre of the bodice. Sew with 1cm allowance.
6. Sewing facing to bodice lining (optional)
Place the back armhole facing on top the back bodice lining with the raw edge lined up. Sew along the raw edges with 0.5cm seam allowance. Fold in/down 0.5cm of the longer curve raw edge and sew along with 0.3cm seam allowance.
Repeat with the other facings.
7. Sewing and attaching bodice lining
Place the front bodice left and right lining pieces on top of the back bodice lining piece with the right sides touching. Pin and sew along the shoulder seam. Open the seams and iron flat. Sew along both sides of the seams.
Place the bodice main on top of the bodice lining with right sides touching. Sew along the edges except the side seams of the bodice.
Clip the seam allowance along the curved edges.
8. Finishing the bodice
Through the ‘tunnel’ around the shoulder, push the front bodice pieces to the inside of the back bodice.
It will look like this.
On one side of the bodice, align the side seams of the main fabric and pin them together. Align the side seams of the lining fabric and pin them together.
Sew along the pinned line all around.
Repeat with the other side, except this time you need to leave an opening of around 15 cm along the lining fabric to turn the bodice to the right side.
Turn the bodice to the right side and using hand stitch to close the opening.
9. Sewing the buttons
Cut a long strip of fabric measuring 2cm in length and around 110cm in width. (You can make two or three shorter ones as long as they add up to approx. 110cm.) Fold the strip in length with right sides touching and sew along the long raw edges with 0.3cm seam allowance. This should form a long casing.
Thread a hand sewing needle with two or more strands of thread. Stitch a few running stitches on end of the case, and put the needle through the case until it gets out from the other end.
Push/pull the stitched end of the casing through the tube to turn the right sides out.
Place the seam in the centre of the casing and iron flat. The side with the seam in the centre will be the wrong side.
Cut the casing into four of 9cm long (right side button straps), and four of 7.5cm long (left side button straps).
Take one 9cm strap, fold it in half as shown in the photo with the wrong side facing up, and align both raw ends to the marked end of one button strap on the Front Right Bodice pattern. Sew along the dashed line which is 0.5cm from the raw ends (i.e. the solid line).
Flip the strap to the left and sew along the dashed lines as shown in the photo below. Make sure the button loop is big enough for the button.
Repeat with the other button straps. (Note: Use the 7.5 straps for the Front Left Bodice piece.)
Sew the buttons on by hand.
Congratulations – now the gilet is finished!