First patterns for Fall – casuals

The second group of new season patterns from McCall’s and Simplicity. These ones are more relaxed (in my opinion !) My previous post, on new patterns in more formal styles, is here.

More on my recent themes. Another welcome 4-pocket pattern. And more comments on easy pattern alterations to get different styles.

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Tunic tops

A big overshirt, McCall’s 6401.


I love this sort of big shirt top. Though a gathered waist casing isn’t flattering on me. Pull in the waist tie lightly, just a slight styling element, a waist marker. A tightly pulled-in tie on an indented waist gives the ‘sausage effect’. Perhaps reduce the bulky gathers with darts.

Two collars, three yokes, four sleeves, two waists, two hem shapes, three lengths, with or without pockets. Goodness, how many options does that make ! All easy changes which could be made to many basic patterns.

Here’s a partial batwing top that’s not for me, but good for some body shapes, McCall’s 6400.


Made in knits. Aren’t these fun – orient yourself by the neckline curve at the top. Though I think you need a rather different body shape and personal style than mine to carry this off !

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Many styles (no blazers !)

Here’s a pattern to add to the few 4-pocket styles available, Simplicity 2153.


A good example of how simple changes in collar, cuffs, pockets, casings, trims, fabrics, can make everything from a dressy vest to a parka, prettier or more utility.

Three collars, four sleeves, three pocket shapes, two pocket placements, with or without collar/ waist/ hem casing or yoke trim.

Have you got a hood from another pattern, that you could add for more weather protection or another trendy style ? Measure the stitching lines of jacket neckline and bottom of hood, to make sure they’re the same length. Add extra to the bottom front of the hood if it’s too short, add tucks or pleats if it’s too long.

By contrast, for a pattern which changes the whole cut, here’s a one with multiple jacket styles, Simplicity 2150. Goes with the new season issue of ‘Sew Stylish’ magazine. ‘Sew Stylish’ always has advice on simple pattern changes,


Two princess styles. It’s easy to change neckline/ collar/ single or double breasted on a princess style – just change the centre front panel.
And two ‘dartless’ styles without body shaping.

Or how about Nancy Zieman’s version of the classic casual knit jacket, this one with wide neckband and optional styling ties, McCall’s 6408.


Two sleeve lengths, two body lengths, two hem shapes, with or without waist ties.

For a sporty casual look there’s a new waist length jeans jacket or vest, McCall’s 6406. Only for the trim of hip ?!


To make different versions – change collars, pocket shapes, top stitching style, add fun buttons, use bright or natural colours or a floral fabric.

And here’s a pretty bolero with cut on elbow length sleeves by Flirt Brooklyn, McCall’s 6407.


Lengthen the body – to hip, thigh, knee, calf, ankle. . . Lengthen or shorten the sleeves. Change the shape of the collar or front edge, or add a hood. Change button layout or add bows or clasps. Use embroidery stitches or trim round the edges. Home dec fabric or voile. Or a contrast lining fabric. A good basis for embroidery or appliqué. Another pattern that could be the starting point for many different versions if it’s your style !

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According to the preview in UK BMV magazine there are some lovely outerwear jackets and edgy co-ordinates to come from Vogue.

I do like the Simplicity Sew Stylish multi-jackets pattern, or Nancy Zieman’s version of that knit jacket classic. And the overshirt, though deep armholes wouldn’t be wearable under most of those jackets. And. . . 😀

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Patterns and links available July 2011

Explore posts in the same categories: current fashion, pattern making for clothes

7 Comments on “First patterns for Fall – casuals”

  1. sdBev Says:

    Yum! What delightful patterns you’ve found! I’m already eyeing something similary to McCalls 6401. I don’t like the sausage effect either but find I can raise the drawstring about 2 inches (or a little more) and avoid that problem. I like the batwing — on sombody else. Simplicity 2150 looks like it would be worth the money. 4 really different views! I need to look for Mccals 6407 I added many vests to my fall and winter wardrobe last year. I find that just a little extra is all I need most of the time. These bolero tops would be a terrific change but do the same thing. Thanks for sharing!

    • sewingplums Says:

      Thanks for the tip about raising the waist casing, Bev, I’ll try that ! I too put on a vest for a bit more warmth, so I do need more of them. I love the potential of that bolero pattern, but need a longer version on my body shape.

  2. Gail Says:

    Ah, you’ve done it again! I will pick up that Nancy Zieman cardigan jacket pattern today when I go to town. For my best look I will shorten it to a 26/27 inch length. I’ll also make a version for a longer sleeve and have a great relaxed jacket look for work! With my figure I will leave off the sewn in belt.
    Thank you for the great work you do. I really appreciate the bridge you build between commercial fashion and home sewing with an emphasis on making it work for the individual. I am using your wardrobe planning sheet to build many little capsule wardrobes to fit all my roles.

  3. Kai Jones Says:

    I really like the Nancy Zieman jacket (McCall’s 6408), and without your post I wouldn’t have found it–because I only look at the plus-size patterns on the website, and silly McCall’s doesn’t list this in the plus section even though it goes up to XXL (24-26).

    Oh heck, I see the Simplicity 2153 parka/vest pattern is the same!

    I’m almost done with the high cascade jacket inspired by your earlier post–just need to insert the other sleeve and finish the armscye seams (haven’t decided how yet).

  4. Bluemooney Says:

    I’m so glad to see the big shirts back, since the trend fits with my current inclination. Thanks for the jacket overview….decisions, decisions…

  5. sewingplums Says:

    Many thanks for your generous comments.
    I do enjoy hearing that people find my posts useful 😀

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