One of my goals for this year was to do a closet clean-out (which is mostly done) and look at creating some me-made clothes that I can rotate into my wardrobe for work calls or just slightly nicer options than my usual tee and jeans or leggings outfit. My new job doesn’t always require me to have my camera on during remote work calls, but there are definitely meetings that I do need to look a bit more put together, at least from the waist up.
I had wandered into Sew Liberated’s pattern catalog and really like her design sense and style. I have purchased 3 patterns from her (and will likely buy a couple of others) that I wanted to make in the (relative) short term. I decided to start with the Forager Vest since it’s a one-size fits all, loosely fitting layer, that doesn’t have a lot of fussy bits.
I found a slate-gray linen at Hart’s Fabric that I really liked, and then had picked up a yard of a fun mushroom/botanical print from Spoonflower to use for the very generous pockets. The pattern is really nicely written, although I think it is helpful that you’ve sewn something before as it has some finishing details that require a bit of proficiency to get a nice topstitching. I didn’t make any adjustments to the pattern except that I did French seams for everything and then topstitched them so all the interior edges are finished. (I decided that would be a good choice for this lighter linen to A) have all the raw edges enclosed and B) add a bit of structure to the seams.)
I paired it here with just a basic white tee and jeans but I think you could put it on over pretty much anything and it’d look great. It’s not a particularly heavy layer but because it’s so loose fitting, you could put on a sweater or a heavier top under it and still be fine. (The pattern is technically “one size fits all”, but it does come with some notes on how to adjust it if you wanted more width across the back.)
I mulled over making the back yoke out of the contrast mushroom fabric and I do think that would have been a cute detail, but in the end, since I was trying to refresh my brain about construction, I opted to use the same linen as the body of the vest. I might revisit that idea in the future if I make another one of these. The simple pieces lend themselves to a lot of customization if you want to go that route.
The pockets are SUPER generous. I easily fit a skein of yarn into one with room to spare. I don’t like to carry huge bags/purses with me, so I could toss in my smaller bag with my ID and cards into one side, plus my phone, and still be able to pop a project into the opposite side as well. I will likely not wear this for actual foraging, but if you are someone who tends to pick up things on walks or enjoys being a magpie-like collector, these pockets would work great for that!
I really enjoyed sewing this piece up and am glad I finally hauled out my sewing machine and got it constructed. I also have a simple top that’s a style I wear a lot of/have several commercial iterations of, and a loose-fitting dress that can be worn as a tunic or on its own up in the queue next.