Cropped Girl’s Waistcoat Tutorial

My daughter is going to a birthday “disco” party tonight and she asked me to make her a sequined bolero style waistcoat. I started drafting the pattern by draping fabric onto her body, then realised that the vest she was wearing had the perfect armscyes for it and decided it was easier to just draw on that and cut it up. It was so easy and we really like how it turned out, so I thought I’d try my hand at a short and easy tutorial:-)

Here goes (-sorry about the picture quality, but if I’d had to get my camera out I probably would have never taken the pictures… Hopefully they are clear enough to tell what’s going on anyway).

With a marker, draw on your design on the front of the vest (have the person you’re making it for wear the vest while you do this or use a dress stand)

Draw half the pattern on the back. It’s important that you leave in the ease you want at the sides and back or in other words; watch how close to the body the vest falls and adjust this in the side you’re drawing. When you’re happy with this, draw in the centre back line, making sure it is straight. You’ll see that mine doesn’t look straight, but that is because I wanted less ease (or that the waist coat should be a bit more fitted than the vest).

(I think her little brother was hiding, so we wouldn’t notice it was already past his bedtime…)

My daughter, at this stage thought it looked a bit like a cow girls waist coat, so kept Yeeahaw’ing when I tried taking pictures of her…

Next, you cut out your design and end up with something like this:

(Yes I know, my next project should be a new ironing board cover, it’s just a bit too boring, so here it is burn-marks and all…)

Now you need to seperate the two pieces but cutting close to the side seam and shoulder seam, which leaves you with this:

Now you can use these as your pattern pieces and you will need to cut out two front pieces in your fabric and two in lining as well as one back piece (place the centre back line against fold in fabric) in fabric and one in lining. Remember to add one cm seam allowance everywhere.

Next, you sew the lining shoulder seams and side seams as well as the fabric shoulder seams and side seams, leaving you with what looks like two rough edged waist coats (I didn’t think you would need pics of this!)

After this you attach the lining to the fabric at the armscye face to face one armscye at the time, lining up the seams.

And here comes the tricky bit (there always is one, right?!):

You now need to grab the lining and fabric at a reference point for example where there is a shoulder seam or side seam, so you can see where the two sides should line up. Now turn the fabrics in face to face, so you can see how they should meet and pin.

(As you can see, we ended up with bits of sequins EVErywhere!)

Now, you keep pinning the sides together for as far as you can. This will automatically turn the garment inside out and as you have already sewed the armscyes, there isn’t much space for that. I would sew as much as I could, trim the seam allowance to 0.5 cm, turn it back out and repeat this last step again until left with just one small hole that I could turn the waistcoat through. (If this doesn’t make sense, I think it will once you are in the middle of it!)

Now all that’s left, is to hand stitch the last little hole and press!

We also spent 5 minutes sewing this scarf… I went shopping last weekend and couldn’t justify buying lots of fabric, and so just bought a tiny bit of this cotton. I then just hemmed the four sides and added the pom-pom trim. It has got to be the quickest project I ever mad. I love quick and easy projects, lazy me!

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