Design a site like this with
Get started

Cozi by name, cosy by nature

I pattern tested for one of my favourite indie pattern companies again. The Pattern Scout’s patterns are really cool, totally wearable, every day garments. What I love about these patterns is that there are always options so you get more for your money and they are so hackable.

The latest from Pattern Scout is the Cozi Jacket, an oversized cropped zipped jacket with funnel collar or hood, and with deep a waistband and sleeve hem, which can be elasticated. It can be made from a wide range of low stretch fabric, woven or knit. Talk about options! The size range is from a US 0-30.

I started off making my test version out of some rather garish fleece I had stashed away in my craft coffin- a large chest in the attic where crafts and failed projects go to die! I had bought the fabric some 10 years ago when my youngest was a toddler intending to make some cute things from it and never did.

I cut a size 14, Version A, funnel neck.The jacket came along nicely and quickly, turned out a bit big though. I did everything apart from adding a zip and elastic.

While making this toile, I couldn’t get out of my mind some images of padded, quilted denim jackets I’d seen in Gap. I really wanted to make one even though I hadn’t quilted anything before, I didn’t have any batting and I had just under a week to make it!

I did however have some denim and some beautiful Ankara fabric that would look great as the lining. And I did have the fleece- how different is that from batting? Not much, I decided.

And so I got to work. I unpicked the fleece toile and then cut the pattern out in the denim and the Ankara. To make the jacket up, I sandwiched the fleece between the denim and Ankara and pinned them together. I decided to go for a simple grid design. I played around a bit to learn how to use my quilting tool, which stitch to use and how big my squares should be. It was fun learning a new thing with my fairly new machine.

With each pattern piece I chalked a line down the centre as my guideline. I chose a basic quilting stitch and worked my way straight down and then straight across. For the pockets I did a smaller grid and for the back I did squares along the lower half but left the top with just the vertical lines. It was all very easy, the quilting tool made sure that my lines were straight. But it was very slow. I’m glad I persevered though.

I love the denim with the wax print

The actual cozi jacket is an easy make and the instructions are so clear and easy to follow. But I made things difficult for myself by sewing with padded, lined fabric. My seams were so thick! I was joining six layers of fabric together. When I came to add my zip, my machine made lots of angry noises and I managed to break a needle! I couldn’t add tape to the inside of the zip to finish it or do top stitching along the zip and pocket edge for fear of breaking another needle.

I love so many things about this jacket. Lining it in this beautiful ankara was very pleasing. I love making garments that are truly unique, one offs. If I had more time and will power, I could have worked out how to make this jacket reversible, but I had neither! Besides, I feel that when you’re pattern testing it’s kind of respectful to stick closely to the designer’s intentions. My inside seams are visible and not super tidy but I still love to look at the fabric and smile 😊

When I made my toile, I was ok with the sleeve length but with my denim one,as I tried it on and moved around in it, I felt it could do with a bit more length, about an inch. I wasn’t sure what to do. The pattern has the cuff and waistband included in the sleeve and bodice pieces respectively, you just fold them up. Because I had intended to do that, I had made sure I didn’t allow the fleece fabric into the cuff and waistband allowance, because it would have made the hems too bulky. I decided I would add a ribbing cuff and Casey, aka Pattern Scout was happy for me to do that.

The ribbing cuff was a good move, I have longer than average arms and it’s good to have a jacket that doesn’t expose my wrists. Several of the other pattern testers were reporting that the sleeves were too long, not me!

Sometimes when I sew something, I spend a lot of time looking at it, trying it on, twirling about in it and saying “I can’t believe I made this!” I did all of that with this jacket, I’m so proud of it.

I really enjoy being a pattern tester. There’s something about being involved in this process that gives you an appreciation of the work a designer does. I also pick up tips on fitting and adjusting and learn and glean ideas from the other testers. But one of the best things is that it makes me try something new. I don’t think I would have chosen to make this jacket as I am a bit of a lazy sewist, I love those quick and easy projects. At one level, this is quite a quick project, but not if you quilt your own fabric. I also tend to get stuck in a style rut and pattern testing can help break this.

Many small pattern companies can’t afford to pay you, the minimum they offer is a free copy of the pattern to test and a completed one at the end. Some like Pattern Scout give a little stipend to help with the cost of materials. Some may totally cover the cost of materials and give you access to other free patterns, it varies.There usually isn’t a requirement to do a review or plaster it all over your social media, but hey, if you love the garment, you’ll want to.

I see pattern testing as a win win situation, the designer gets to iron out any issues with their pattern and I get at least a free pattern and some experience to tuck under my belt. As long as I don’t say yes to everything and over burden myself, I’m happy to pattern test. I do try only to test what I like the look of too, what I think suits my style.

So yes, the Cozi is a winner for me. You can find it here. You can also see a round up of some of the jackets made by the testers here. Lots of great inspiration there. I’m planning to make a fluffy, snuggly one to wear at home because our old house is a bit draughty. My daughters have put in their orders too.

I’d be interested to hear your thoughts on pattern testing 😊

Published by The Unpickstitch Papers

I'm a teacher, baker and own clothes maker. I like to read, I like to work out. I wish there was more time in the day to do life. I have 1 husband, 2 daughters and no dogs yet, though I'm working on wearing my hubby down!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: