Anorak- by Megan Hanna

Sewing has been a part of my life for over 40 years.  There have been ‘dormant’ stages when the kids were young or when I didn’t have a place to set my machine up.  For the past five years I’ve explored the Modern Quilting movement.  Recently I’ve gone back to garment making and have been thrilled to discover many wonderful online, Canadian fabric suppliers.  

This jacket was made using the softshell fabric in Simple Feather, aqua.  We live on the west coast and spend a lot of time outdoors, so the weatherproof/fleece combo sounded perfect.  The pattern is ‘Landgate’ and it’s from Merchant & Mills, a British company.  I used both serger and sewing machine to make the jacket.  The construction thread is a cotton/poly blend.  The topstitch thread is Superior Masterpiece and the needle was a size 14 universal.

The softshell fabric was much easier to work with than I thought it would be.  During cutting and piecing it didn’t slide around at all.  There’s enough give in the fabric to ease a curve into place but not so much that it stretches where you don’t want it to.  The only place where I ran into any difficulty was with the zipper.  With the zipper, the inset, the hood and the hood facing there is a lot of bulk.  If I were to make the pattern again, I’d do this part differently.  

I must admit that I had my doubts as I was sewing this jacket.  Were the feathers too ‘flashy’?  Why did it seem so huge?  Who could I gift it to if it didn’t fit me?  Ugh… there was a definite funk going on.  But, when I got it all together, with the hems done, the sleeves shortened and with reflective cording/toggles/cord ends, I loved it.  There will be many damp Vancouver days when this jacket will brighten things up.