I first saw the Halifax Hoodie by Hey June in the Indie Sew Instagram feed and almost, immediately I went a purchased it. Last year, I had an intense love affair with the Linden Sweatshirt by Grainline Studio. (I made about 5 of them!) But, I still felt the need for a zip up front hoodie in my life. Sometimes you just need the freedom to zip down and let a breeze come through. Or pop on the hood for a little added warmth. Hence, my rush to get this hoodie in my closet.
I was lucky enough to find this grey loop-back sweatshirt fabric at the Michael Levine Loft store in downtown LA. Then, while I was hunting for jeans zippers (for these jeans) I found this amazing neon orange separating zipper. I don’t remember the name of the store unfortunately but I do remember it was north of Michael Levine, on Maple. It’s very tiny with lots of beads and such plus a surprising amount of zippers spread throughout the store.
The zipper is a few inches shorter than is called for by the pattern so I shortened the body to accommodate. The shortening was a blessing in disguise because I had barely enough fabric. It took quite a bit of puzzling to squeeze it all in. There may have been some fist pumping in the air action when I got it figured out. ;) I really like the clean finish of applying the cotton twill tape to cover the zipper tape on the inside. You can see what it looks like on my Instagram.
If you’re looking for a sweatshirt pattern, this is definitely one to consider. It has five different views, including a pullover with angled seams and dip hem that looks super cool. The construction went really smoothly. I mostly used my serger which is super fast and easy once you get the tension right. Seriously it takes me way longer to balance the tension than to thread the blasted machine.
One thing I was thinking about when installing the zipper was what kind of stitch I should use. For knits, it’s important to use a stitch that has stretch but here we’re sewing it to a zipper tape that doesn’t stretch. So I just went with a regular straight stitch. Let me know if you have any advice on this. I also did a straight stitch around the hoodie/neckline to hold the facing in place. I don't think the neck seam will get too much stretching so I'm not worried about the seams popping. There just wasn't enough room to do my usual twin needle treatment.
There are a few minor changes I’ll do next time though. 1. I won’t serge the interior side of the pocket in the beginning, instead serging it together with the center front edge. 2. I might shorten the sleeves just a little bit. And I’ll definitely do this shorter length again. I’m 5’11” but the pattern is already long enough for my liking. 3. I’ll make the buttonholes for the drawstring on the hood much closer to the neckline. I’d also love to do an eyelet instead of a buttonhole for a really professional looking finish. 4. Figure out how to get a cleaner finish at the top of the zipper. My zipper had a flaw where the tops were partially cut off and I didn’t think about making sure it was finished until the very end. It was a little tricky to get it cleanly done but it worked out.
I love this sweatshirt soooooo much. I was working from home last week and wore it pretty much everyday, including out on a weekend night! It’s so comfy and oddly I think it’s kind of slimming. I don’t know if I’ll make another one soon but it’s definitely going in the success pile.