Guest Post by An of Straight Grain

Hello everyone, and happy Monday! We’re back at it again with our final guest post for the Best of Fall pattern review series. I am so excited to welcome An from Straight-Grain as a guest today! I actually found An through Jessica, who posted a link somewhere to the adorable coat pictured below. Since then, I’ve fallen in love with An’s style. There is something so simple, yet striking, about her work. She and I share a love of Japanese fabric, so I never tire of looking at the beautiful dresses she’s made for her daughter. Plus, I can’t help but adore her daughter’s little bob haircut , since my own Abby-girl has the same style! If we didn’t live on separate continents, our daughters would certainly be friends. Thanks so much for being here today, An!
Read to the bottom for a chance to enter a giveaway by The Fabric Fairy!


Hi everyone, I am An from StraightGrain, and I’m so thrilled to be guest-posting here in this great series! My favorite fall pattern is Dear My Kids’ Double Breasted Coat, which I bought via their Etsy shopa good year ago. I made one last year, another one this year, and I’m pretty sure that I’ll make a lot more in the years to come (if not this year!).

The pattern is very affordable, and it has very detailed instructions and illustrations. This makes it ideal for beginning seamstresses.

But aside from these practical considerations, it’s just a beautiful design! Remember what little Caroline and John-John wore on their father John Kennedy’s funeral in 1963? Me neither, because I wasn’t born yet, but I’ve always been in love with picturesof the blue double breasted coats the tiny toddlers were wearing. DMK’s double breasted coat has that same classic style.

The pictures which accompany DMK’s pattern show it more in a ‘Spring’ version, made with regular cotton, but I like it most as a Winter’s coat in a wool-mix. So what changes did make to the pattern?

In terms of styling, I added some buttons in the front, to make it look more like a classic double-breasted coat. I also added piping (an idea I saw here) for a more vintage look. The original pattern instructs to use lining fabric on one side of the collar, but I used outside fabric on both sides, to create a more professional look.



To make the coat warmer, I used insulating facing throughout (I ironed it on the wrong side of the outside fabric), but I don’t feel like it does much. So next time, I think I’ll just line it with fleece.

One thing I changed is that I added facing in the front of the coat. It’s warmer, more professional, and it makes sure that the lining is not showing on the outside of the coat.

Finally, I’ll end with two little tips which might be useful. (1) Before you start, take a pen and write  on the instructions where you will insert a loop to hang the coat. I planned to sew in a loop, but I forgot, and regretted it later. (2) A friend of mine who also made the coat, used the embroidery function of her machine to put her daughter’s name on the inside of the jacket. It looks incredibly classy!

Caila, thank you so much for having me here! I’ve really enjoyed reading all the previous posts in this series.


Aren’t those coats amazing? This post gets even better because you have a chance to win THREE YARDS OF FABRIC (with free shipping) from The Fabric Fairy
I cannot say enough good things about this shop. Megan is one of the nicest shop owners out there. She is quick to respond to questions, very helpful, and runs a great Facebook page. I bought the fabric for Hudson’s awesome Space Shirt, and the fabric for Abby’s Retro Love Racerback Dress from her shop. The Fabric Fairy is especially well known for carrying an amazing array of fold over and ruffle elastic:
To enter the giveaway, simply answer me this in the comments section below:
What was your first project sewn with knits? Or, what would you LIKE to sew with knits, if you’ve never done so before?

You have until midnight on Tuesday (tomorrow), Oct. 23rd to enter! Don’t miss out on this excellent giveaway! (And check back tomorrow for one last giveaway!)


  1. says

    As a grown up my first item with knits were two little peasant style dresses for my daughters in chenille (stretch velveteen, don’t know the correct name)

    Would love to win!!!

  2. says

    I love to sew with knits! I actually made a wrap dress with knit from Joanns (of all places) and loved how it turned out. Now, I’m addicted!!! 🙂 I’d love to win!!! 🙂

  3. says

    Knits are my fav once you figure out how to not make them go wonky! I just love the comfy fabric. I honestly have NO clue what my first knit project was, but my next knit project is to make the Banksia in jersey. Cannot wait!

  4. says

    I have used that pattern many times…always with GREAT results!!! In fact Antropologie did a similar coat (VERY SIMILAR) last year and it listed at $198!!!! I will be making it again soon. I actually think the coat could be cute in knits ( Spring like). Fingers crossed..would love to WIN!!!

  5. says

    The first project I remember sewing with knit (mind you, I’ve been sewing since I was 8 years old) was a Barbie swimming suit. I made dozens of them. Not sure what the fascination was other than it was a quick project. My most recent project with a knit was this weekend when I made my 6yo daughter a long-sleeved ruffled bolero to wear with her beloved Hello Kitty t-shirts!

  6. says

    My first REAL projects with knits were a series of shrired sun dresses for me and my daughter! 🙂 Some of the most comfortable and flattering dresses ever!!!!!! 🙂

  7. says

    My first “real” project with knits was a pair of Made By Rae’s BBBP for my daughter out of a recycled sweater I never wore. I’m now obsessed with sewing with knits for her, and have amassed a large collection of thrift store sweaters to make into pants and shirts for her winter wardrobe.

  8. says

    My first knit-sew was a tunic for my girl for last year’s KCWC. It wasn’t so scary after all! :). Thanks for the sweet giveaway Caila!

  9. says

    I love sewing with knits and almost cotton knits only. My first knits project is a long-sleeve PJ top using thermal cotton knits. It’s so stretchy and I kind of ruined it.. So far I prefer cotton interlock knits and baby rib knits than any other kind..

    Thanks for the chance to win~


  10. says

    Hi, I started sewing with knits 30 years ago when my children were small. Now I’m sewing for my grandchildren Abbie 9, Katie 7, Bennett 6, and Camden 3. Here in Maine we are a little slow being aware of knew things like fold over elastice and rufflfe elastic. Sounds like a lot of fun. Would love to win those things that are not easy to know about.

    Thanks for the chance to win,
    from the great state of Maine

  11. Beth says

    My first project with knits was a dress for my daughter, upcycled from an old tshirt. It was way too small when finished, so now I make ahead in sizes : )

  12. says

    I am having to rack my brain for my very first knit project. I love to sew with them now, but the first thing I really remember making was a Mod Kid pattern for my daughter. What really increased my knit sewing was purchasing my serger a year and a half ago! 🙂 I would say with my serger, I prefer sewing with knits to all other fabric. The challenge is finding good knit prints, which I am sure the Fabric Fairy could help me with. 😉

  13. Anonymous says

    First thing I made with knits… Okay, technically, fleece is a knit, right? Then it must have been the double-face fleece cardigan for my eldest son, who was 5 at the time.
    As for jerseys: that was a t-shirt. In a *striped* knit… Learned how to deal with striped knits the hard way, for sure 🙂

    Thanks for the giveaway!

  14. says

    I sewed some nursery items with knits for my oldest son years ago, but I am more comfortable with cotton. I need to branch out more and explore knits again. Thanks for the chance to win!

  15. says

    I just bought Rae’s Flashback skinny tee pattern and love it:):) thanks for this series , it has been helpful choosing patterns:):)

  16. says

    LOVE this jacket by An! So cute. My very first knit project was a ruffle flower thingy appliqued onto a onesie, way back in my early days of sewing. But I didn’t get serious about knits until more recently; I’m almost starting to like them more than wovens, now! Shocker!

  17. says

    My first project with a knit was almost exactly 4 years ago when i was sewing a witch custome for my baby girl (she now is 4 and a half years old and doesnt believe she was tiny enough to fit into it!) xo

  18. says

    My first introduction to sewing with knits was a pattern by Patty Young the Maya Knit dress. I totally fell in love with sewing with knits and love how they are so stylish yet soft and comfortable for my girls.

  19. says

    My first time using knits was technically a fleece blanket and fleece poncho for my daughter — but as far as regular knits go, my first REAL project was an infinity dress from McCalls

  20. says

    first thing i made out of knits was a dress for me and a
    dress for my little girl both out of the same fabric! we didn’t wear them at the same time though 🙂
    christy at nsw1 dot com

  21. says

    My first knit project was a t-shirt for my son. It was a total disaster, the neckline was wonky, the hemline puckery, the sleeves too short. He still loved it and used it a pj top. 🙂

  22. says

    This coat is adorable! I had always thought for my 1st knit project I would make a simple tshirt but I think I have charged my mind to modifying that to making a cardigan like you made 🙂

  23. says

    First knit project I did was this summer. It was a sleeveless shirt for my son and it turned out perfect. And I have plans for making some knit pj’s for my boys this winter. I’d sew more knits, but it is harder to find fun kids prints. 🙂 Thanks for a chance to win! 🙂

  24. says

    dont really love sewing with knits, but i think my first project was a pair of pajamas i made myself in high school

  25. says

    Ironically, i actually won a knit dress pattern from Lil Blue Boo 3 years ago which catapulted me into sewing. So the first project I ever sewed was actually on knits. I started out sewing with knits so it wasn’t scary–i didn’t know enough to be scared, i guess 🙂

  26. says

    My first knit project was the Sienna Dress pattern from Lil Blue Boo. I had no problems with it, on my 40 year old metal singer. Now, I have problems on my fancy new “plastic” Brother machine. Oy. Knits are my favorite, though–I have never had an issue until now 🙂

  27. says

    hmmm. I’ve started a few projects with knits, but only finished a dress/shirt for my toddler. (She wasn’t there when I made it and I underestimated her height.)

    annhnyc (at) yahoo (dot) com