First of all, thank you, stitchers. Thank you for your emails and texts, and your very helpful feedback – like Kristine, who posted a bit about Bootstrap 8 1/2″ by 11″ assembly (thank you, Kristine!). Remember, I am here to help you if you get stuck!
So there’s no time like the present, to get started! Am I right?
This pattern comes with three pockets – a welt breast pocket, which I am omitting, and awesome in-seam pockets (I always think of these as “kidney-shaped”). We are installing our pockets first. And while we’re at it, we’re going to be doing a lot of two-row stitching. This means we sew our first seam, then sew 1/8″ from that first seam, then trim. Most of the robe is made up this way, with a slight variation when it comes to the pockets (as shown below).
So – let’s get started! Pin the pocket pieces in between the side seam notches, right-sides together, for all four pocket pieces:
Now, sew these pocket seams at 3/8″. I start about 1/2″ before the pocket, and extend 1/2″ past it, using a narrow zig zag – about 0.5mm by 3.0mm:
As I said, during construciton I’m going to stitch again 1/8″ from the first seam. Here for the pockets, this second seam will take the form of an understitch. This means I gently steam-press the pocket and seam allowance away from the body of the robe, and then sew a second seam catching all layers into the pocket side:
This understitching has two functions. One, as a second stitch into the seam allowance, it adds strength here. Secondly, it will keep the pockets from trying to “turn out” on their own. Shown below, the right-side of the pocket. The pocket piece is at the bottom part of the photo:
Once I’ve done this, it’s time to take that short facing seam at both the robe fronts, and the front facings we created, and stitch. You know, this seam:
After stitching you can stitch again at 1/8″ or simply press open (as I did).
Now, we are going to join our front robe (which has just been joined by this last seam), to our large back piece! It can be confusing here but the truth is, that back “scoop” on the back piece, will perfectly fit the neckline join we just created. I like to cut right to that point on the front pieces – right to that 3/8″ – and pin, pin, pin, sewing such that the back piece is against the machine and the front piece facing up:
Sew slowly. On your second pass, taper that second stitch line to catch right there at this point. Trim as per usual:
Now, we’re going to sew up our shoulder seams, to the sleeve. We have these handy notches to match things up. As per usual, I pin such that I’ll sew with the sleeve against the machine, and the robe body facing up:
Go ahead and stitch your second line of stitching, trim, and lightly steam-press these shoulder seams. I pressed toward the sleeve (not toward the robe).
Finally, let’s sew up those side seams, from the sleeve hem all the way to the robe hem! This is a great place to take the robe to a table, lay it out, and pin, pin, pin! Pull out the kidney pocket pieces and pin these pieces together – they should match up well, if you cut and measured correctly. When stitching this, seam I like to use a little piece of stabilizer at the start and finish of these seams to keep the machine from pulling the knit fabric into the feed dogs.
And when you get to your pocket, don’t panic! You want to make sure your side seams and pocket are all pulled gently but snugly away from the body of the robe. Leave your needle down, right where you plan to pivot. Lift the presser foot, pivot, and sew slowly around the pocket. Easy-peasy! It can be tricky not to push the second seam allowance “into” the robe, so sew slowly and adjust when you get to that picky bit.
See you soon!