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May 04, 2021
I'm really excited to be on the RCF blog today to share my favorite jacket! By far one of the best things about moving last year is I now live within an hour's drive from the RCF shop! I happened to be in the shop one day picking up fabric and I heard Diana mention that the shop's boardshort fabric would work for a Wheaton and I couldn't stop thinking about the idea!! I wasn't familiar with the boardshort fabric but I've sewn the Wheaton Windbreaker from Hey June three times in various fabrics and was eager to give it a go!
The boardshort fabric is a sueded microfiber that is 100% polyester. The main side feels soft and warm and the reverse has a slight sheen and is very smooth. The website describes the reverse as almost silky and this is exactly how I'd describe it! I picked the Tonal Light Teal Abstract Waves print from the California Dreaming collection by Kimberly Henrie. I LOVE the color and design of this fabric! Depending on lighting I feel like it is sometimes more blue teal or sometimes more green teal. I adjusted the exposure a tiny bit (4% lol) in the nicer pics to try to reflect the color I see most often with my eyes but didn't change the auto color from the cell phone shots so you can get a sense for the slight variations under different lighting and camera situations. I honestly love all the ways this fabric appears!!!
I'd never sewn boardshort fabric before so here are a few tips I discovered:
1. USE A NEWish UNIVERSAL NEEDLE/CONSIDER USING A WALKING FOOT- I used a newer universal needle and it worked well; well enough that I didn't need to try any other needle type! The fabric is sturdy (I didn't feel like it warped out of shape when cutting or with careful handling) but it did behave better when I used my walking foot when stitching.
2. USE AN EXTRA LOW IRON and CONSIDER BASTING- I also wasn't sure if I could fuse interfacing to the fabric but tried it on the pockets and the tricot interfacing adhered well. I definitely made sure to use the lowest possible iron setting and I ironed on the main side of the fabric instead of the shiny wrong side. I don't have a fancy pants iron but I did finally upgrade from the cheapest irons on the market from Walmart/Target. It's worth testing on a scrap first and you should use a press cloth. I didn't have any problems with the interfacing and I'm really glad I didn't skip it! I did a lot of basting for hem allowances and it helped me know exactly where to use my Wonder Clips.
3. USE WONDER CLIPS/WONDER TAPE- I did some unpicking (before realizing I should be using a walking foot) and the holes mostly disappeared with some steam from my iron but I also felt like I could still see them. I'm Team Wonder Clips anyway so it's not too hard to convince me to not pin but if you do, pin within the seam allowances. I used Wonder Tape on the pockets and on the hem band facings and it held well enough to sew without anything shifting. I will confess I did pin the back neck facing because it's hard to get the Wonder Tape positioned just right when pinning over my seam roll but I used the pins as sparingly as I possibly could and held my breath the whole time I sewed the seam haha.
4. FINISH RAW EDGES WITH A SERGER- the boardshort fabric tends to fray some on the cut edges. A simple zigzag stitch with a basic machine would help but finishing with a serger really kept those seams looking tidy. The center back seam of the Wheaton is a French seam and that's also an excellent finishing choice.
The Wheaton Windbreaker from Hey June Patterns is a casual, slightly cropped unlined jacket with dolman style sleeves and a three piece hood. It is designed for light to medium fabrics with drape. I wouldn't say the boardshort fabric is super drapey but since I've sewn this pattern before in a not drapey twill I knew the boardshort fabric would be fine. Plus it is specifically listed as one of the fabrics in the pattern so I wasn't concerned. I did choose to sub out the welt pockets though because I wasn't sure how well the fabric would press. I think I made the right call! I debated drafting pockets or possibly using the pockets from the Bryce Cargos since there was no way I was skipping pockets entirely. The next day a Joy Jacket by Chalk and Notch popped up in my Instagram feed the cutest shaped pockets. I had completely forgotten about the view B pocket shape! It seemed like it was meant to be! The little bit of interfacing at the top of the pocket was the perfect spot to test out interfacing. I did end up shortening them at the bottom by about 3/8 inch and perhaps the top is a smidge too high (if it were a contrast fabric it would be a bit too nearish the bust line for my preferences) but they are totally functional and totally cute!! I chose a cotton sateen fabric for the lining and decided to use it for the front facings too like @sew.becky did on hers. The reason I picked the lining fabric for the facings was because it was before I knew how well the interfacing would take to the main fabric. I love the little pop of color and how well it goes with the main fabric. I also added a hanging loop like I did on my other Wheatons. If you want to twin with me you can snag the Wheaton Windbreaker here (affiliate link).
Thanks for reading my musings on my favorite light jacket! Raspberry Creek Fabrics has so many amazing designs on boardshort fabrics that would be perfect for a set of Wheatons! An anorak style jacket would also be fabulous!
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