Sewing

Throwback Thursday: Jasper Surprise!

Welcome to Throwback Thursday! Today we’re talking sweater dress with a surprise:

Pattern:  Paprika Patterns’ Jasper, which I was lucky enough to obtain from a Perfect Pattern Parcel.  (Remember those?  So awesome!  I still regret not buying the boys one…it had the Knight Hoodie in it!  Alas, I did not know I’d have a boy then…)

Completed:  January 2016 (I only remember this because I got it done the day before, maybe day of, my cousin’s baby shower!)

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I decided not to wear makeup (OK, fine, I put a little lip gloss on…) for this blog post, but I did brush my hair.  :P  I don’t wear makeup on a daily basis, so I find the prettifying process the biggest hindrance I face (ha!) when it comes to actually getting photos of my makes taken.  I decided to not give a f*ck for today’s post!  :)  Shout out to breastfeeding for the nice skin.  I’m scared to quit you.

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The fabric is a wool sweater knit from Fabric Mart.  It’s rather scratchy and stiff; it was not a great choice for this pattern.  I would definitely go with something more drapey and soft next time, like a lightweight sweatshirt knit or heavy french terry.  Ugh, the itch factor:  I have to wear long sleeves and leggings under it (though, that’s not always a bad thing during Wisconsin winter).

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The stiffness of the fabric especially didn’t help the collar look good on me; it really needed more play.  With a bigger bust, I always find that higher collars really accentuate it.  I don’t feel like the pattern samples look quite this modest, and that’s probably because of my fabric choice.  Or maybe I’m just makin’ shit up.  I may lower the neckline regardless when I attempt this next.

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I’ve been meaning to blog this for over a year now…long ago I had mentioned to Lisa (Paprika’s designer) on Instagram that I’d made her awesome pattern nursing compatible and that I’d let her know when I blogged it.  Well, since then she’s had her first baby, made her own nursing-adapted Jasper, and just wrote a nursing hack tutorial two weeks ago.  Time marches on!

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Do I look like a pissed off librarian or what?

So, you wonder, how would one nurse in this dress?

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LIKE THIS!

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Oh yeah, I put invisible zippers in both princess seams, starting at the armscye seam, and for the most part, it worked like a charm (this is the exact way Lisa also did her nursing hack as well).  You can barely see the zipper pulls from the outside; here’s what the zippers look like from the inside.

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I took Cheeks with me to my cuz’s baby shower and was able to breastfeed him easily in the dress.  Mission accomplished.

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Sis, Cheeks, Cuz and I at Cuz’s shower!

But like many missions, there are often improvements that can be made.  I almost always have to do an FBA, and Paprika’s blog has a couple of great tutorials on just that, one on how to add a touch of room to the bust, and another if you need to add a large FBA.

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I didn’t really think through how this pattern would work functionally for nursing before I began, other than the fact that it needed a way to open and close.  What I really didn’t consider was how this would work while pumping.  Also:  I’m lazy.  So, I took a shortcut and used the “add a bit of room” FBA directions with a size 5.

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The result is functional, but not optimal.  The princess seams with the adjustment I used are really not over the full part of my bust (AKA my nipples), which means I had to yank everything over a bit to breastfeed, and had to REALLY futz with it all to pump, since both sides of the dress had to be out of the way.  Not cool, dude.

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If I did it again, I’d definitely go a size down in the bust and waist (4) and use a proper FBA to get the princess seams where they actually need to be.

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I also found the hips to be a bit tight on this when I first wore it, so I’d probably stick with at least a 5 or maybe go to a 6 (and I don’t consider myself excessively hippy or anything, so something good to note if you’re thinking about making this).  I’ve lost quite a bit of weight since I finished this, which is why the whole thing is loose to fitting well in these photos.

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Overall, I really like this pattern, and especially enjoy the little touches such as the collar (with strap and button) and hood options, cuffed sleeves (could even elongate them and add a thumb hole!), princess seam shaping, welted kangaroo pockets…I’m a sucker for details.  There will be more.

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And there it is!  Finished 14 months ago, finally shared with you all today.  Thanks for stopping by Throwback Thursday!

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6 thoughts on “Throwback Thursday: Jasper Surprise!”

  1. It looks like a fab pattern and such a genius idea to make nursing friendly aka peek-a-boob :D I’ve never seen invisible zippers used the there but it’s fab!!

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