Do you ever have those moments where you’re half way through doing something, and you step back and think, ‘What the hell am I doing?’ I had one of these moments not long ago, while I was sitting at my sewing machine, drowning in a pool of my own sweat. 33 deg, 98% humidity, and I’m sewing a freakin’ coat. Do I not know where I live?! In winter we barely hit single figures at night, let alone during the day! Just goes to show how stinking cute this coat is.
Anyway, the reason I was buried in fleece and felt was because I was pattern testing Lisa from Big Little Patterns‘ Wild Things Coat. It’s a ridiculously cute and versatile pattern for animal themed coats for kids. I made a Tiger cowl from this pattern last year, and when I got the opportunity to test the coat, I couldn’t resist.
The pattern has options for tonnes and tonnes of animals, adn includes hacks for even more, but I free-ranged and created a tiger.
I used some orange fleece I picked up last winter from Spotty, and some black felt to create the stripes. I had some issues (lots of issues, I may have even dropped some sweary words) with the first lot of felt I had (the squares), but once I got some of the stuff off the roll, things got better. It’s fully lined, so if it needs to be warm, you can add an extra layer of snuggle with flannel. I used a cotton poplin with a super cute monkey print, but you could use anything from voile to quilting cotton and even proper thermal lining.
Just playing an imaginary recorder (the best kind of recorder, IMHO!)
When I was planning my tiger, I decided that it needed stripes on the back, sleeves and hood. The arms were simple – just a matter of eye-balling where my stripes would go, pinning and stitching on before construction. The back was the same – eye ball, pin and stitch. The hood needed a different approach though, and I needed to construct the hood first, then attach the stripes. I found it easiest to get the little man to model the hood outer first, then I (gently and carefully, doing my best to avoid stabbing my child in the head) pinned the stripes in place.
The instructions were super easy to follow, and allowed for some free ranging if needed. I pattern matched the lining because I had plenty of fabric, and actually cut the lining sleeves upside down, so that the monkeys would be in the right direction when turned up. There is a bit of length to the sleeves so that coats can be worn for two seasons, which is a great idea. I imagine that once the little man grows out of it, Princess Busy will also get plenty of wear out of it.
Anxious to start your own version? Visit the Big Little Pattern shop and purchase your pattern.
And just for shits and giggles, this is all I can think of any time someone says tiger.