Belted Sweater | Pattern Hack
If you know me, you know style and comfort are my jam. Therefore it seemed only natural to want a hooded version of the #DPLBELTED jumper in my wardrobe. This pattern hack is so simple and arguably easier to sew than inserting the neckband - as IF this design couldn’t get any better! Okay I’m biased, but you guys love it too as it’s our best seller, so staying true to our mission of enabling you to go beyond sewing, today is all about pattern drafting techniques that can be applied to any neckline: menswear, womenswear or childrenswear - but c’mon, it looks pretty awesome as a hack on the Belted Sweater.
DRAFTING THE PATTERN
Print your pattern as normal, making any length adjustments where necessary - for reference, I abolished the cuffs on the sample above though did not change the sleeve length. Next, mark your seam allowance around the bodice necklines and the neckbands as shown.
Measure your front and back necklines along the top now-marked stitch line, take note of the measurements.
Align the stitch line of the back neckband to the back bodice and repeat on the front pieces, tape or stick in place.
Time to draft! Square off a line on a large piece of paper (you can stick newspaper together and use a biro or Sharpie if you need to be resourceful!).
The line should be at a right-angle with the vertical to the right side of the paper. The length of your vertical line is your desired height of the hood, so the longer the line, the higher the hood. It’s a good idea to take a measurement of your head height to ensure you have a minimum length to work to.
Next, draw a line 6CM parallel to the horizontal base line, and another parallel line 4CM in from the vertical line, this will be your facing and drawstring channel.
Halve your front and back neckline measurements before adding them together. So if your front neckline measured 21CM your new measurement would be 10.5CM and if your back measured 16CM your new figure would be 8CM, add these together (totalling 18.5CM in the example). Draw the length of this line between the two horizontal marks ensuring the end of the bottom touches the closest vertical line.
Working from the left of the diagonal line, mark your half back neckline measurement along the line. This will be your shoulder seam notch.
Square off your hood from the centre back and along the top. Next we are going to draw a line through the shoulder notch, curving it up by 0.5CM from the centre back, through the notch and down 1CM towards the centre front.
Now let’s draw in the hood!
Mark the half way point on both the top horizontal line and the left vertical line.
From the point marked on the vertical line, measure out a minimum of 4CM. The bigger this measurement the deeper your hood will be. The sample above was fairly dramatic (in keeping with the oversized proportions of the sweater). From your centre back point on the neckline, draw your hood in through the 4cm (+) marker and smooth your shape into the halfway point of the top line. You now have your completed two-piece hood shape.
To finalise the pattern ensure you add your seam allowance, as the facing and drawstring channel has already been incorporated it is not necessary to add seam allowance onto this, though of course you can, increasing your facing from 4CM to 5CM etc.
If using an eyelet or buttonhole for your drawstring cord, make sure you mark the placement onto the pattern. If your facing is 4cm, centre the mark in the middle. In this example that would be 2cm from the vertical edge of the centre front and fold line of the facing, and 2cm up from the neckline.
Finally add in any notches (your shoulder notch and facing fold line) and draw your grainline parallel to the vertical edge. Label what the pattern piece is, the size and how many pieces to cut in cloth.
CONSTRUCTING THE HOOD
Pin your two hood pieces right sides together and sew. Press.
Neaten the edge of your facing in your chosen method before inserting your eyelet or buttonhole where marked. Folding your facing over and press.
Turning your hood right side out, take your chosen drawstring (optional) and thread through the facing channel feeding out of the eyelets/buttonholes either side. Carefully stitch down your facing ensuring you don’t catch the drawstring.
Let’s attach our hood! Pin your hood right sides together to your new bodice pieces, matching the notch at the shoulder and aligning the hood’s seam to the centre back with your centre fronts neatly placed. Pin and sew.
Turn everything the right side out and we’re done! If you’d like to abolish the cuffs too, simply finish the sleeves in the same manner the instructions guide you to do on the hem.
Try This Simple Hack Yourself
If you haven’t already, you can grab the Belted Sweater pattern below and exercise your creativity with hood proportions and detailing. I’d love to know how you get on with being your own pattern drafter so please make sure to tag me in any Instagram posts of your creations!