I set out to make the Ottobre 06/2011 Bathrobe. It is # 36 and called "Ju-do-ka-ko." I wanted to make it for Mr. T because he has no robe at the moment and because he loves martial arts.
We are a household of techies and video game freaks. All four of us from my husband down to Miss K love any form of electronic or video game. When I saw this "Geeks gone wild" pac-man fabric I knew I had to make something epic and awesome out of it.
Let's fast forward to the end product. Don't you love it!
fully lined with soft flannel
Eek! I love the chevron's!
Ok, now let me take you through the process.
TRACING: In the magazine there are a total of 10 pieces you want to trace out. There is a 1a front and 1a back as well as a 1b front and 1b back. The a's and b's attach. This was time consuming. It took me an hour and a half to trace and seam allowance it all. I traced a size 152 for T even though I knew he was a 146 because I didn't want it to be too small too fast. This robe pretty much fit me! (and I'm a small on top and a 10 on bottom). As I was tracing I pre-washed all my fabric.
FABRIC/CUTTING: Next comes the fabric. This project is a fabric HOG. The instructions call for 2 yards of the black shell, 2 yards of the blue flannel lining, and a little over a 1/2 yard of the red chevron. The black shell and red chevron are to be 58"-60" wide; the blue flannel 44" wide. I wanted the black fabric and it was only 44" wide so I ordered 3 yards to be sure. The red chevron was also 44" wide so I ordered a yard to be sure. The blue flannel I ordered 3 yards as well and it was 44" wide. **** THIS WAS TOO CLOSE FOR COMFORT **** I sweated, prayed, and begged the pattern to fit the fabric. Luckily the black is a 4 way print and I was able to literally eek out exactly what I needed. The flannel also was just enough. It was super stressful to cut this out. The red chevron was the hardest. The pattern piece #4 and #7 NEED the 60" wide. I had to piece this all together instead of having a whole piece. I also had ONE inch!!!! of this fabric left. Please, if you want to make this, order 60" wide fabric and save yourself the headache! Cutting took me at least 2 hours.
SEWING: After two days I finally sat down to sew. I traced one day, cut the next, and came to sew the third day. The first step is the pocket, this was a breeze. I did use 2 of the chevron for the pocket and not 1 of chevron, 1 of black shell like they called for. Next was the front band of red chevron you see all around the robe. There was no difficulty here but I had to piece together 4 pieces instead of the two because of the fabric issue above. Top stitching was utterly boring and thread gobbling but I got through it. The sleeve bands were also constructed the same way as the front band and was easy to do. Next you join the shell together - this was the fastest, easiest, and most rewarding part. No issues here. The same was to be said for the lining. Joining the shell and lining was where trouble began. First you place them right sides together and sew all around the front but keep the red band in between. This was easy and I had no issue. However, then the pattern states "Bring sleeve edges of shell and lining end to end, line up edges and pin them together, right sides facing and with sleeve bands in between, and stitch. Note that sleeve and lining are not within one another." WHAT?? HUH? I did not get this at all. A picture would have been a million times better. I could not envision this so I made do with my own way. I pressed the lining hem under, slipped it into the arm hole the way it should go (wrong sides together) and then top stitched around the outside on the very edge of the red band. I know it isn't right but T won't care and inside is where it looks goofy. (If anyone knows what they meant please, let me know).
see how the lining is folded and sewn to the band, this is the inside view
From the outside view below the stitching looks like it is part of the band's top-stitching
View from inside where belt is attached
View from outside where belt is attached
If you want to make your child a special robe - go for it! This project was LONG but worth it to see how happy T was when I gave it to him. This is a very time consuming project. It is also fabric consuming. Total cost of fabric was $45. Despite the challenges and time, I'm glad I made this robe. Would I do it again? I'm not so sure! Thanks for sticking with me on this long post!
Interested in the fabric?
Geeks Gone Wild Pac-Man Black 100% cotton
Urban Flannel Stripe Blue 100% cotton
Remix Zig Zags Red 100% cotton
~ Happy Sewing! ~ Kristin ~